Krishnamurti's Notebook

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Krishnamurti's Notebook
First US edition (1976)
Author Jiddu Krishnamurti
Country United States
Language English
Subject Philosophy, states of consciousness, autobiography
Publisher Harper & Row (US)
Publication date
1976, expande 2003
Media type Print (hardcover, paperback)
Pages 387 pp (full text edition)
ISBN ISBN 978-1-888004-57-1 (hardcover), ISBN 978-1-888004-63-2 (paperback)
OCLC 54040143
LC Class B5134.K75 A35 2002

Krishnamurti's Notebook is a diary of Jiddu Krishnamurti (1895–1986). He began keeping this handwritten journal in June 1961 in Los Angeles, and continued making entries for nine months, with the last one entered in Bombay, March 1962.[n 1] It was first published in book form in 1976 (see Original edition below).

Full text edition[edit]

The work was expanded in a 2003 edition (the so-called Full Text Edition), following the discovery in the year 2000 of additional diary pages.[1][n 2]

About the work[edit]

The diary describes Krishnamurti's world from the inside; in particular his experience of a strange condition he called the process, and the manifestations (often accompanying the process, at other times independent of it) of a state he refers to as the otherness.[n 3] The journal ends as suddenly as it begins.


As one sat in the aeroplane amidst all the noise, smoking and loud talking, most unexpectedly, the sense of immensity and that extraordinary benediction which was felt at il L., that imminent feeling of sacredness, began to take place. The body was nervously tense because of the crowd, noise, etc. but in spite of all this, it was there. The pressure and the strain were intense and there was acute pain at the back of the head. There was only this state and there was no observer. The whole body was wholly in it and the feeling of sacredness was so intense that a groan escaped from the body and passengers were sitting in the next seats. It went on for several hours, late into the night. It was as though one was looking, not with eyes only but with a thousand centuries; it was altogether a strange occurrence. The brain was completely empty, all reaction had stopped; during all those hours, one was not aware of this emptiness but only in writing it is the thing known, but this knowledge is only descriptive and not real. That the brain could empty itself is an odd phenomenon. As the eyes were closed, the body, the brain seemed to plunge into unfathomable depths, into states of incredible sensitivity and beauty. The passenger in the next seat began to ask something and having replied, this intensity was there; there was no continuity but only being. And dawn was coming leisurely and the clear sky was filling with light. – As this is being written late in the day, with sleepless fatigue, that sacredness is there. The pressure and the strain too.

Entry of 9 July 1961[n 4]

Comments and reviews[edit]

Krishnamurti biographer Mary Lutyens wrote in the foreword to the original edition, "In this unique daily record we have what may be called the well-spring of Krishnamurti's teaching. The whole essence of his teaching is here, arising from its natural source."[n 5] Elsewhere, she observes, "apart from its content, it is an extraordinary manuscript, 323 pages without a single erasure."[2][n 6] She devoted a chapter to this book in the second volume of her biography of Krishnamurti, Krishnamurti: The Years of Fulfilment. In it she mentions objections raised against its publication by Krishnamurti associates who had read the manuscript and thought that it presented a picture of Krishnamurti at odds with his public pronouncements. She also provides Krishnamurti's responses to these objections.[3] M. Lutyens had revealed the existence of the process in Krishnamurti: The Years of Awakening, the first volume of her biography of Krishnamurti published in 1975, a year before the Notebook.[4]

Roland Vernon, another of his biographers, mentions that prior attempts (by others) at revealing the existence of the process were suppressed by Krishnamurti, apparently in the belief [justified according to Vernon] that the "sensationalism of his early story would cloud the public's perception of his [then] current work".[5]

Shortly after publication of the Notebook in May 1976, Krishnamurti in an unusual move decided to write "for fun" his own review of it. This was partly reproduced in Krishnamurti: The Years of Fulfilment.[n 7]

The Library Journal stated in review, "[Krishnamurti's] insights are, as always, written in plain, nonsectarian language, and give perhaps the best picture we have today of the life of the spirit outside a strictly religious context."[6]

M. Lutyens wrote that the original publication "passed unnoticed by the press both in England and America",[n 8] yet the book did receive some contemporary publicity.[7] The work's stature has increased since: In its obituary of Krishnamurti, The Times (London), described it as "a remarkable mystical document",[8] while in 2006 the work was cited in a conference paper as "probably ... the most extensive documentation to date of a mystic’s inner thoughts, perceptions, and sensations".[9]

Following this diary's original publication, two other diaries of his were published in book form: Krishnamurti's Journal in 1982, and Krishnamurti to Himself in 1987.

Original edition[edit]

The first edition was published simultaneously in the United Kingdom and the United States, in May 1976.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ [As of 31 December 2010 this is considered the final entry for this diary].[1]
  2. ^ [As of September 2011 the 2003 "full text edition" forms the basis for this article].
  3. ^ Life-altering experiences (in Jiddu Krishnamurti). Article section describes the initial occurrence of the process (in 1922) and includes short reference to the otherness, which is alternately called by Krishnamurti sacredness, immensity, presence, etc. [This and all similar emphasis added].
  4. ^ US full text edition (2003) hardcover pp. 5n, 17–18. By "il L." [emphasis in original], he refers to a house near Florence, Italy, where he had stayed previously.
  5. ^ Krishnamurti's Notebook 1st US ed., pp. 5–6 (in "Foreword"). Retrieved on 2010-06-20.
  6. ^ [Pre-full text edition statements regarding the number of pages, the journal dates, and the publication's uniqueness (as a diary) among Krishnamurti's works, have been superseded].
  7. ^ Lutyens 1983, pp. 88, 212–213, 240 [in "Source Notes": no. 39]. "If knowledge is not the root of observation, what have you with which to observe? Can the many yesterdays be totally forgotten, which is the essence of freedom? He [Krishnamurti as the author] maintains that it can. This is possible only when the past ends in the present, meeting it fully, head-on. ... Let me add here that I am not a follower nor do I accept Krishnamurti as my guru ... With critical examination I find this book totally absorbing because he annihilates everything thought has put together." Excerpt from Krishnamurti's "review", dated 20 June 1976. M. Lutyens states that he must have "glanced" at the published Notebook. According to her, from the 1950s on Krishnamurti rarely bothered with his books; See also Neustatter 1976, article and interview published in The Guardian, 19 June 1976.
  8. ^ Lutyens 1983, p. 119.


  1. ^ a b McCoy, Ray (2003). "Foreword to this edition". In (author) Jiddu, Krishnamurti. Krishnamurti's Notebook (full text ed.). Ojai, California: Krishnamurti Publications of America. p. iv. ISBN 978-1-888004-63-2. 
  2. ^ Lutyens, Mary (2003) [originally published 1990. London: John Murray]. The Life and Death of Krishnamurti. Bramdean: Krishnamurti Foundation Trust. p. 210. ISBN 978-0-900506-22-2. 
  3. ^ Lutyens, Mary (1983). "Chapter 10: Krishnamurti's Notebook". Krishnamurti: The Years of Fulfilment. New York: Farrar Straus and Giroux. pp. 107–119. ISBN 978-0-374-18224-3. One or two people among the handful who read the manuscript were averse to its publication. They feared it would dishearten K’s followers. He maintains that human beings can transform themselves radically, not in time, not by evolution, but by immediate perception, whereas the Notebook shows that Krishnamurti is not an ordinary man transformed but a unique being existing in a different dimension from ordinary humanity. It was a valid point and I put it to him. His reply was, 'We do not all have to be Edisons to turn on the electric light.' Later he was to say to a journalist in Rome, who suggested that he had been born as he was and that therefore others could not attain to his state of consciousness, 'Christopher Columbus went to America in a sailing ship; we can go by jet.' What he was trying to convey in both these metaphors was, of course, that he had discovered arduously how to free men from sorrow so that now anyone could benefit from his discovery without having to go through all that he had gone through. 
  4. ^ Lutyens, Mary (1975). "Chapter 18: The Turning Point [through] Chapter 21: Climax of the Process". Krishnamurti: The Years of Awakening. London: John Murray. pp. 152–188 [cumulative]. ISBN 978-0-7195-3229-0. 
  5. ^ Vernon, Roland (2001). Star In The East: Krishnamurti: The Invention of a Messiah. New York: Palgrave. pp. 227–228. ISBN 978-0-312-23825-4. 
  6. ^ Bagby, Jeanne S. (1 October 1976). "Krishnamurti's Notebook". Library Journal 101 (17): 2068. ISSN 0363-0277.  Review (positive) of the original edition.
  7. ^ Neustatter, Angela (19 June 1976). "Krishna Murti (right) is the guru who, since cutting loose Anne Besant and theosophy 50 years ago, has preached transcendental development without building a commercial empire. Angela Neustatter reports on the diary he did not intend for publication". The Guardian (London). p. 11. ISSN 0261-3077.  [Includes photo. Variant spelling: "Krishna Murti"].
  8. ^ "Obituary of Jiddu Krishnamurti, philosophical and religious teacher.". The Times (London). 19 February 1986. p. 14. ISSN 0140-0460. 
  9. ^ Daniel (Jr.), Walter (June 2006). When is the Whole Greater Than the Sum of Its Component Parts in a Constantly Changing Universe? 'Explanation' in Science and Religion (PDF). Continuity + Change: Perspectives on Science and Religion. Philadelphia: Metanexus Institute. p. 22. Retrieved 2011-06-06. 

External links[edit]

  • "Krishnamurti's Notebook" (selections) – J. Krishnamurti Online [JKO]. Web document serial no./id: JKO 251. Krishnamurti Foundations. "J. Krishnamurti Online, the official repository of the authentic teachings of Jiddu Krishnamurti." Retrieved 2011-03-06.