Awakening and non-knowing

“The timeless non-state cannot be achieved because 
the mind cannot evolve towards it. The mind can only 
bring you to the threshold. Awakening comes 
unexpectedly when you do not wait for it, when you 
live in not-knowing. Only then are you available.”

                                                                      ~Jean Klein

4 thoughts on “Awakening and non-knowing

  1. Hi Martin

    Nice quote – this JK is very reminiscent in his teachings of the other JK! Did you post as a provocation or because you concur?

    Best wishes

    • I do not know much of the other JK. But I agree with Martin’s explanation of the two different viewpoints (paramarthika and vyavaharika) and thus I concur with the statement . I would add though that one needs to do more than just “live in not-knowing” – any simpleton can do that. Seeking to understand is crucial but awakening will come about in those little moments when you do not strive. As JK says “Only then are you available”.

  2. That quotation of Jean Klein reminds me of the following one of the Christian philosopher and mystic St. Augustine:

    What then is time? If no one asks me, I know what it is. If I wish to explain it to him who asks, I do not know.
    St. Augustine XI, 14

    The first part of the Jean Klein’s answer is akin to paramartha (contemplative, silent, ‘not knowing mind, and the second to vyavahara (discursive, conceptual mind). Yes, I would agree with that statement.

  3. Dear Martin, Sitara

    The way I interpret it is that moksha comes only when all concepts (including the ‘I’) are surrendered and one lives in not-knowing, and non-volition. But the ‘I’ clearly can’t DO anything for that to happen, because that implies an I. Hence why he says that it comes unexpectedly, when you do not wait for it, and Katha talks about grace, he whom the atma chooses.

    Interesting though that this implies that moksha is more than just knowledge of non-separation. It implies a step that is out of one’s control – self-evidently!

    So Sitara, I agree that initially one needs to think / reflect / meditate / study intensely to arrive at the conviction of advaita. And then one goes beyond knowledge (‘vedanta’), beyond the ‘I’ thought, to the silent awareness that we are. The other JK put it well when he said that when thought realises that it is forever limited, an outcome of its conditioning, of its past, then it naturally comes to an end (not through force) and in that silence, the infinite MAY come.

    Would you agree?



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