Krishnamurti, Jiddu (1895–1986)
Indian philosopher and spiritual teacher. Born May 12,
1895 in Madanapelle, South India, Krishnamurti was educated
privately. While still a child, in 1909, he was ‘‘discovered’’ by
Theosophist Charles W. Leadbeater, who had been promoting
the idea that the next world teacher would appear among Theosophists.
Leadbeater presented the young boy to Annie Besant,
president of the Theosophical Society, who took up his
Besant saw to his education and in the 1920s began to travel
the world with him. She organized the Order of the Star of the
East to promote his mission. Krishnamurti emerged as a talented
teacher but also began to question the role that had been
thrust upon him. In 1929 he publicly announced that he did
not accept the messianic role and withdrew from any association
with Theosophy. He continued from that time forward as
an independent teacher to those who were attracted to him. A
network of foundations formed in various countries to facilitate
his teaching activity and publish transcripts of his lectures.
Krishnamurti’s philosophical position stemmed from his
background in Hinduism and Theosophy, but he developed his
own unique iconoclastic understanding. He traveled widely and
addressed audiences all over the world. He attacked many
other Indian teachers then working in the West, some of whom
he believed were watering down Indian thought and exploiting
their followers.
Krishnamurti died in Ojai, California, on February 17,
1986, at age 90. A number of books were produced from the
transcripts of his talks and dialogues with various intellectuals.
Field, Sidney. Krishnamurti The Reluctant Messiah. New
York Paragon House, 1989.
Jayakar, Pupul. Krishnamurti. San Francisco Harper & Row,
Krishnamurti, Jiddu. The Awakening of Intelligence. New
York Harper & Row, 1973.
———. The First and Last Freedom. London V. Gollancz,
———. Life Ahead. London V. Gollancz, 1963.
———. The Only Revolution. London V. Gollancz, 1970.
Lutyens, Emily. Candles in the Sun. Philadelphia Lippincott,
———. Krishnamurti, The Years of Awakening. New York Farrar,
Straus, & Giroux, 1975.
———. Krishnamurti, The Years of Fulfillment. London J.
Murray, 1983.

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