Only in Aloneness Is There Innocence

Most of us are never alone. You may withdraw into the mountains and live
as a recluse, but when you are physically by yourself, you will have
with you all your ideas, your experiences, your traditions, your
knowledge of what has been. The Christian monk in a monastery cell is
not alone; he is with his conceptual Jesus, with his theology, with the
beliefs and dogmas of his particular conditioning. Similarly, the
sannyasi in India who withdraws from the world and lives in isolation is
not alone, for he too lives with his memories.
I am talking of an
aloneness in which the mind is totally free from the past, and only such
a mind is virtuous, for only in this aloneness is there
innocence.Perhaps you will say, “That is too much to ask. One cannot
live like that in this chaotic world, where one has to go to the office
every day, earn a livelihood, bear children, endure the nagging of one’s
wife or husband, and all the rest of it.” But I think what is being
said is directly related to everyday life and action; otherwise, it has
no value at all. You see, out of this aloneness comes a virtue which is
virile and which brings an extraordinary sense of purity and gentleness.
It doesn’t matter if one makes mistakes; that is of very little
importance. What matters is to have this feeling of being completely
alone, uncontaminated, for it is only such a mind that can know or be
aware of that which is beyond the word, beyond the name, beyond all the
projections of imagination.

Jiddu Krishnamurti, The Book of Life