Emptiness, Body, Mind, Life
Question: Knowledge of emptiness may lead to disinterest, negligence, dullness, and laziness towards the body, mind, and life. What is the purpose of body, mind, and life?
Emptiness is a misconception because anything we say about it is not true emptiness. Why is that? It is because emptiness is the experience before thinking. That’s really important. Many people get attached to the idea or understanding of emptiness, or maybe have an experience of emptiness, then try to hold on to it. The result of this is disinterest, negligence, dullness, and laziness towards the body, mind, and life.
To talk and teach about emptiness, I use the analogy of a mirror. The mirror has nothing in it. It just reflects everything as it is. So if your mind is truly empty, that means your mind and this world are not separate. When we have that experience and don’t hold on to it, then we connect with the world. Then it is possible to respond to the world with love, compassion, and wisdom. That is why call it great love, great compassion, the great Bodhisattva way.
So, first take away the idea of emptiness. What is emptiness? Where does the idea of emptiness come from? Throw it all away in your mind and wake up to what is in front of you right now. Then you’re truly engaged. When someone is sad, your mind is also sad. When someone is angry, you feel the anger. Then our purpose in this life becomes very clear because we see how we are not separate from anything in the universe.
Usually, we think we are separate from everything else because we create this separation between self and the universe. What is this self? What is this “I”? Everything in the universe has its job. What is a human being’s job? If we experience this point before thinking and don’t attach to it, we see there is this body, there is thinking, understanding, and emotion. How do we use all of that at the moment we are in right now to help this world? Then the purpose of body, mind, and life becomes very clear.
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