Beginnings of Learning

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Phoenix, 2003 - Education - 261 pages
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Krishnamurti believed that “education is the heart of the matter.” His longstanding concern with the nature and problems of education led him to found schools in India, England, and America, and his conversations with students, teachers, and parents form the major part of Beginnings of Learning. These lively, often intimate exchanges turn on practical, everyday matters as well as wider philosophical issues, as Krishnamurti encourages his audience to appreciate that the beginning of wisdom is self-knowledge. Jiddu Krishnamurti was born in southern India in 1895 and died in 1986. The essence of his teachings is that societal change and world peace can only occur through a complete change of individual consciousness.

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This is Krishnamurti's second book which I finished reading now. And what a wonderful book this is. Krishnamurti was an outstanding philosopher and thinker. He founded many schools in India, the USA and Brockwood Park in Hampshire, UK. This book documents his conversations with some of the students, teachers and parents at these schools (major one is Brockwood Park). The conversations ranged from anything to everything. The goal is to find how to help students/children meet the educational demands of the society without conforming to society's conventional values. The focus should be on self-awareness, self-learning, avoiding prejudices, learning difference between affection and sentiment, being peaceful and non-violent in true sense, not conforming to other's values, and acquiring spirit of cooperation.
The book is in the form of conversations. A student or questioner asks something and then Krishnamurti replies, explains and takes the questioners along with him. The QnAs are very valid for even today's times; perhaps more valid today to the wider audience.
You can also check my blog where I have also reproduced some paragraphs from the book:
It was an interesting and exhaustive read. I recommend this book for all who are interested in learning.
- Rahul

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About the author (2003)

Jiddu Krishnamurti was born on May 11, 1895 in Madanapalle, India. As children, he and his brother were adopted by Dr. Annie Besant, then president of the Theosophical Society. She and others proclaimed that Krishnamurti was to be a world teacher whose coming the Theosophists had predicted. To prepare the world for this coming, a world-wide organization called the Order of the Star in the East was formed and Krishnamurti was made its head. In 1929, he renounced the role that he was expected to play, dissolved the Order, and returned all the money and property that had been donated for this work. From then until his death, he traveled the world speaking to large audiences and to individuals about the need for a radical change in mankind. He belonged to no religious organization, sect or country, nor did he subscribe to any school of political or ideological thought. On the contrary, he maintained that these are the factors that divide human beings and bring about conflict and war, and that we are all human beings first. He was a philosopher whose teachings of more than 20,000,000 words are published in more than 75 books, 700 audiocassettes, and 1200 videocassettes. He died of pancreatic cancer on February 17, 1986 at the age of 90.

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