Void: Creative Darkness

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Form does not differ from the void, and the void does not differ from the form. Form is void, and void is form. Perceptions, conceptions, and knowledge are also void. Form is form, and void is void. (Prajna Paramita Sutra)

The Tao that can be told is not Tao. The names that can be given to it are not its names. (Tao Te Ching, 1)

As I search for light in the darkness, I realize that as time passes, facts ultimately take shape relative to each other and me. The definition shapes itself according to me. With this approach, I can’t blame anyone, because there is no one I can thank or blame for my own life. I am the one creating my own reality. I then realize I can change reality by changing myself. Using this awareness to try to create, I presume to establish a partnership with God, but because this act of creation originated from my mind—my feelings, emotions, and fears, as well as my desire to possess—it is not a real creation. It would at best be a vulgar, incomplete, and probably harmful imitation of creation. “To be” gives way once more “to possess.” I presume that I can create and possess happiness.

At first, everything is fine. I start to give form to the reality I desire, albeit roughly, but over time, I discover that a new agony is waiting for me. There are two main causes of this suffering. Firstly, I cannot create everything I want. Secondly, my creations do not really make me happy. Within me, there is the growing restlessness a man feels when he perceives himself as poor, even when he has many possessions. I think I maybe want the wrong things. Should I instead be asking for the right things? I stop asking for myself, and I want for others instead, but this does not make me happy either.

I should discover my real ambitions. Perhaps I should stop wanting, but who is this “I” who wants? To discover my real ambitions and figure out who really wants them, maybe I need to understand who or what this “I” is who wanted them in the first place. When I start this quest, despite using different methods of psychotherapy and past-life regression therapies, my misery continues. I am unhappy, because I am still chasing a definition, and I am trying to own something that I call me. It is this me who changes and desires to change reality. Everything is shaped according to this me, but if all reality occurs according to me, who really is this little person I call me?

So, I forget everything I know about me in an impartial way, and I begin to observe what I call me. The first phase of observation is very difficult, because it is like holding a slippery piece of ice in your hands. It feels like I’ve captured me for a moment, but then it is immediately lost. Looking at me, I realize I am shaping it according to my own point of view. In fact, everything in this universe is taking shape according to my point of view. What I call me is not in a separate location from this reality either. I can observe me only relative to me. Me takes shape only relative to the intentions I direct at it. It is just like the physicist who intends to observe light as particle, so he sees a particle. Meanwhile, another physicist intends to observe light as a wave, so he sees it as a wave. So, what is light really? What is me? Should I abandon my observation for this reason? How can I observe me? How can the eye see itself? I think there may be ways to do this: I can see my own eye through someone else’s eyes or in a mirror. I start asking people to explain me to me. This effort is fruitless of course, because the person observing and telling me is observing me according to his own self. My mind becomes confused about how I can observe what I call me in a neutral fashion, as it is in reality. The I cannot observe me, because the moment it tries to observe it, it changes it according to me. Other people cannot observe me either, because they would change me according to them. Who or what am I? How can I ever observe me?

I give up finally. I know there is no way to observe what I call me. I sit still with no intention of trying to observe it. All intentions, all desires, and all definitions lose their meanings. I know these will change what I call me according to me. I know my knowledge is the obstacle stopping me from knowing, so I turn my mind into a mirror and start observing without the intention of observing. The observer then becomes the observed. Then gently, form becomes space, and space starts to transform into form. I do not question, and I do not expect. I have no intentions. I merely stop and look. I look, and I look…

The form then begins to dissolve itself. I begin to realize what I called me is a huge delusion. There is no me that can be separate and independent from everything. Above all, me does not exist. Whatever was defined as me, it is only a delusion. It is ignorance. What I call me is nothing but nothingness that assumes it exists. There is no me that knows.

As I continue to look, everything begins to dissolve and nothing but emptiness is left. This is the emptiness that underlies everything. Everything is created from this emptiness, but how can something that is empty create?

As I continue observing, a happy feeling starts filling me up inside. I cannot describe it, because I am in the emptiness. Still, I know that it is a happy feeling. It is a feeling similar to love and courage.

As the emptiness begins to shine like a light growing in front of my eyes, I experience my first enlightenment. I understand that I was not born, and that I will not die. As the light gradually increases, I know it is a true light. The emptiness is the light! It shines somewhere behind my eyes and fills the entire universe.

I continue to observe the emptiness. I feel my form turning itself slowly into emptiness.

The emptiness I perceive as light exists in all places and at all times, but at the same time it is nowhere at any time. I realize the emptiness is timeless and dimensionless. I realize it is like a pinhead compared to the entire universe.

I continue to follow the light, and while watching it, I realize it is itself the main reason for creation. I am surprised to realize that a consciousness exists inside the light.

The light tells me what it is: Light is a virtue!



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