The Difference Between Blankness And EmptinessWhat is troubling is that I have found two distinct attitudes regarding the nature of this blankness.
In my search to understand the truth about reality and the self, I have come to a crossroad. I understand that the world is an illusion. That I am in some sort of dream where even this mind and this body aren’t even real. I understand too that within this dream there are glimpses of reality and that these glimpses are often a blankness within the objects around me. What is troubling is that I have found two distinct attitudes regarding the nature of this blankness. The first, that it is devoid of any quality, that it is truly empty. The second, that it is love (which is a quality. perhaps a quality of illumination). The first attitude I am sure is correct on some level, but it can be depressing. The second is more rewarding. However, I worry that the attitude that ‘the blankness that is reality is love’ is pleasing only because it is suggested that it is love. I am afraid that the blankness is love only because I believe it to be so.
I am starting to get the idea that if I interject the self into the blankness it may make more sense. That is, if what I understand to be my true self is the blankness, there may be clarity. Because if I am the blankness, the blankness cannot be completely empty, right? Or, maybe the depression that goes along with the attitude that reality is void of quality, is just a stage in shedding my skin of a conditioned way of thinking.
What are your thoughts?
The first attitude you describe is blank only in the sense that it has no objective qualities. But Knowing is there, Presence is there and ‘I’ is there.
It is not necessary to interject the self into it. It is already the self, already what you are. Is it not your experience that it is ‘you,’ whatever that is, that is seeing these words? Is that ‘you’ not knowing or experiencing these words and at the same time, is it not present?
Why do you feel that this knowing of your own being is depressing? It is only depressing if we superimpose a blank object upon it.
If we look at this presence that we intimately know ourselves to be, we find that all experience is permeated by it. It is intimately one with all things and is therefore known as love. At the same time it is never moved or changed by any experience and is therefore known as peace. See that this presence that you are, is simply ever-present untouched by all experience and yet intimately one with it.
It may not be apparent at first that it is also peace, love, happiness, freedom etc. However, if you simply stay with yourself, giving attention to your self, these qualities begin to shine through.
Don’t superimpose any qualities upon your self or adopt any beliefs about what it should or might be, but rather allow its qualities to reveal themselves in time.
You are right that what you are cannot be blank because, as you say, you are there. Knowing and presence is also there. That is already quite a lot!
It is you that illumine all experience. It is you that knows the blank depression, but the depression is not you. It comes and goes in you. It is known by you. Have no agenda with it. Take your stand as your self, this Knowing Presence, and see clearly that the depression is a sort of blank object appearing in you.
Divested of a sense of ‘me-ness’ this depression is simply a neutral bodily sensation appearing in you. It has no separating power, no power to make you feel one way or another.
Welcome this dull feeling into yourself along with everything else. Simply let it be. Be very loving with it. Above all don’t try to get rid of it. It thrives on your resistance to it.
Let the ‘me’ part of the depression fade away simply by being clearly seen for what it is. In time it will dissolve, but not because you have gone to war with it, but rather the opposite. There is only one thing these feelings cannot stand and that is being clearly seen. They thrive on inadvertence.
Yes, allow the skin of conditioned thinking and feeling to be fully seen. No more is needed. Allow the skin to fall away in its own time.
If you insist on an agenda, make it a loving, welcoming one. Whether these feelings die of love or neglect doesn’t really matter!
Please feel free to come back to me if anything is unclear.