Sunyata or emptiness does not mean that there is no existence of matter. I would appreciate that as well. Empty Words, pg. pg. This short phrase essentially sums up the linear continuity of life. Abstract A scientific analysis of Einstein’s theory of relativity proves that time and space are empty of inherent existence, in accordance with the Madhyamika philosophy of Buddhism. The Law of Dependent Origination (existence) and the nature of emptiness is neither the same nor different. Everything in the fleeting present is simply a means to satisfy these necessary impulses for life. I like the analogy of fire. 26. 8. Empty Words, pg. We seek obtaining a thing only until we achieve it. Dr. Peter Abas One of the four essential themes is the existence of a painful void. The conventional designation of phenomena does not point to inherently existent things, but are relative, relational characterizations, like large is to small, or as smooth is to rough. I have been studying for at least 3 years now. Ultimate truth is different in this regard. Moonshadows, “Taking Conventional Truth Seriously.” 2011, He also explains that if we cleanse them enough, we can move into Bhuta Siddhi, or mastery of the elements. Conventional truth is truth about phenomena that is inferred through cognition. Conventional and ultimate truth are interrelated ways of understanding emptiness. The direct perception of emptiness depends upon conventionally designated phenomena to discover that they are empty. But this is not to suggest that we are left with nonexistence or nonsense either. Instead, all objects are designated on the basis of relationally described characteristics and to be an object is merely to be characterized. Fire seems a thing unto itself it can not exist without dependence on these other objects. From the ultimate standpoint, there are no phenomena or for that matter standpoints. ~ Thank You for reading these details of how I have understood emptiness ("śûnyatâ"), the fruit of the religious philosophy of Siddhârtha Gautama, the "prince" of the clan of the Śakya's (ca. 11. This is the way of Madhyamaka." And if you are not empty, you cannot be there. The teachings on emptiness are concerned with HOW things exist, not IF and WHETHER things exist (UFO's Unicorns and Yetis) or WHY things exist (because God, The Devil or the Spaghetti Monster made them). Three forces instead of happiness for Schopenhauer drive our lives: Hunger, sexual instinct, and the ever-present state of boredom. This is a terrific digest of teachings. “Therefore it is said that whoever makes a philosophical view out of emptiness is indeed lost.”  Nagarjuna. Empty Because there is existence, There is non-existence, Because there is existence. Emptiness is an absence, a negation of inherent existence, nothing more substantive or eliminative than that. Truly greatful for this article and website. “Madhyamaka is Not Nihilism,” 2012, pg. For if it was taken apart it would no longer be identified as a table. stong pa nyid) — the absence of inherent existence in all phenomena, which was explained by the Buddha in the sutras of the second turning of the Wheel of Dharma, and further elaborated upon by masters such as Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti. Existential Emptiness The experience of emptiness is a universal, existential re-sponse to the human condition. The truth of "sunyata" and "existence", and "nature" and "phenomena" are not in conflict with each other. In the first place, it was considerably longer than the former. The emptiness of emptiness refutes ultimate truth as yet another argument for essentialism under the guise of being beyond the conventional or as the foundation of it. śūnyatā; Tib. 1. The Fundamental Wisdom of the Middle Way. ~ Many of the principles used to rule out total emptiness also preclude small pockets of emptiness. Change ). Conventional truth explains emptiness as dependent arising and ultimate truth demonstrates the “unfindablility,” the emptiness of phenomena. 38. Thank you for supplying this information. 2.  That is explained to be emptiness. If we are ever to embrace Buddhism properly into the West, we need to be clear about emptiness, since a wrong understanding of its meaning can be confusing, even harmful. Here lies the key to liberation. This is why it is so important to identify the object of negation to be only the inherent existence of phenomena, not their conventional existence, and to recognize ultimate truth as only that absence. The emptiness that Nagarjuna talks about deals less with the identity and essence of a thing, and instead deals more with the substance of which something is empty (Westerhoff). Yet there is another vital insight needed to explain why conventional and ultimate truths are not dualistic and this takes us to the doctrine of the emptiness of emptiness. Sunyata (Sanskrit) and Sunnata (Pali) translates as “emptiness” in English. Just as our lives function in this way, so do events and things we experience. The references used for this article focused on the brilliant works of Jay Garfield, Professor of Philosophy, Buddhist scholar and translator. Such reification is a conceptual overlay that gives the false impression that characteristics stand outside of thought as their own separate things. Emptiness as a human condition is a sense of generalized boredom, social alienation and apathy.Feelings of emptiness often accompany dysthymia, depression, loneliness, anhedonia, despair, or other mental/emotional disorders, including schizoid personality disorder, post trauma, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, schizotypal personality disorder and borderline … the necessary indissolubility of subject and object in the process of knowing is the concept of emptiness in Yogācāra. Thank you so much for this explanation, it has a stunning clarity and has helped to dispell much confusion on the subject. ~ The doctrine consistently upholds a non-foundational, empty relativity. When inherent existence is globally negated through ultimate analysis, conventional images do not then disappear, but no longer deceive. ( Log Out /  For instance, air is not considered to be fire because fire is not found in air. Existential Emptiness The experience of emptiness is a universal, existential re-sponse to the human condition. 10. We do not end up with objective truth in which our observations reference truly definable phenomena. To realize emptiness is to recognize that there can be no ultimate reference points and therefore no ultimate positions or views. Then once you recognize this, then it’s just a minute, it’s just a second, minute, to realize emptiness, to realize that one is hallucination. Oxford University Press, 2002. What we consider to be different things, depend upon other things to be considered different. Even in canonical expositions of the emptiness of things, the idea is often explained in different, and not obviously equivalent, ways. Nagarjuna’s doctrine of the emptiness of emptiness involves many reasonings that interrelate in deep and comprehensive ways. This essential theme of the existence of a painful void is fully explained through the feeling of emptiness, a feeling of a need to fill an empty hole, and a feeling of incompleteness. ~ This is the emptiness of phenomena and thus, their mere conventional existence, the only existence we can know or speak of. Something that is not dependently arisen, This same understanding can be applied to a person. However, our conventional reality is also deceptive. This penetrating and paradoxical insight reaffirms the emptiness of inherent existence including objects of knowledge. Heading across Osaka on a grey morning to the great modern domed Maishima Arena, and speaking on the occasion of the 125th anniversary of Koyasan University, he began by inviting the audience to chant the Heart Sutra together, and then delivered an ever more incisive and rigorous dissection of the journey from emptiness to compassion, as explained in the great Buddhist text. 5. However, so, just there, just there, that your mind has been holding on to this I, this real I, which I already explained before what it means, this real I. Translation and Commentary, Garfield, Jay L., Oxford University Press, 1995. The conventional designation of objects requires conceptual boundaries in which to single things out and ultimately there are no boundaries, no independent things to designate. As he puts it, “Our existence is based solely on the ever-fleeting present”. Amazing to see how this reasoning works. Only the conventional can name things, as conceptual abstractions amid a sea of interdependencies, without that sea being a definable whole either. Fire, like all phenomena, is unfindable because it has no separate nature. Ultimate truth does not point to a transcendent reality, but to the transcendence of deception.5  It is critical to emphasize that the ultimate truth of emptiness is a negational truth. Picture credit :probaway.wordpress.com, For the original text go to : https://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/s/schopenhauer/arthur/essays/chapter4.html. Emptiness as a Meditative State. What is conventional is like a label, a construct, a story. Ultimate truth or emptiness does not point to an essence or nature, however subtle, that everything is made of. Realizing Emptiness of the 'I'; How True Existence is Projected; Dedications. Emptiness as a human condition is a sense of generalized boredom, social alienation and apathy.Feelings of emptiness often accompany dysthymia, depression, loneliness, anhedonia, despair, or other mental/emotional disorders, including schizoid personality disorder, post trauma, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, … It speaks to the empty interrelation of all phenomena no matter what is being designated or labeled. ~ Moonshadows, pg. Also, if anyone has any suggestions for the upcoming posts (topics, changes, etc.) Emptiness was therefore said to be the ultimate non-existence of the things we see. I love logic and sharing/debating anything with anyone. Phenomena are mistakenly perceived and conceptualized as self-established, each with their own core nature that makes them what they are. For example, there are consequences in distinguishing a snake from a rope and that sense of being right matters.1  If there was no reliability to our everyday assessments our activity would be senseless. This is a stark pessimistic comment which begins to peel back the layers of optimism common to philosophy and make us exposed to Schopenhauer’s version of pessimism. They are now just as non-existent as the past but the feeling remains beyond this. That, being a dependent designation Is itself the middle way. Conventional truth is the ladder by which the deceptive structure of its own conceptuality is ultimately undermined. In “On the Vanity of Existence,” Schopenhauer argues that life’s futility: is revealed in the whole form existence assumes: in the infiniteness of time and space contrasted with the finiteness of the individual in both; in the fleeting present as the sole form in which actuality exists; in the contingency and relativity of all … This leads to a central realization regarding the meaning of conventional truth. There is no reification involved, no subject-object duality present. Moonshadows, pg. They are understood interdependently, as ultimately empty and thus, as only conventionally real. Emptiness is absence of inherent existence. Oxford University Press, 2011. at the matters at hand. If emptiness existed in the independent self-established sense, then emptiness would not be empty but inherently existent. Conventional truth is our agreed upon identification of things and how they work, and this understanding directs our worldly activities. 10 Great Movies That Reflect The Emptiness Of Existence. Ocean of Reasoning, 2006, pg. body, feelings, perceptions, mind formations or thought process, and consciousness, are impermanent, ever … Please leave any opinions or comments. ~ Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. We seek happiness only to find that we will never be happy from the ultimate attainment of something we seek. Emptiness is the ground of everything. As Sonia describes “loneliness is a kind of emptiness… This confirms my understanding. Shunyata is often compared to space, which is defined in Buddhismas the complete openness, or 'unobstructedness', which allows anything to occur. Ultimate truth is not more than the emptiness of phenomena. ~ Martyrs. To exist nominally means that as everything is interdependent and boundaryless, nothing can ultimately be identified. They do not exist objectively, from their own side. In this article we will expand more on the concepts of positive and negative emptiness across multiple theories of … Since forms are the bases of emptiness, emptiness is form; forms appear as like reflections of emptiness. Careful study of the two truths, equally neither the same nor different, is the path to freedom from death and fear. A main point that could be extracted early on is the idea that the present is really all that is real. And I reflect – Nagarjuna’s philosophy of the Middle Way or Mahyamaka school of Buddhism shows how the two truths are different and yet despite this difference are critically the same. All things are possible. The emptiness that Nagarjuna talks about deals less with the identity and essence of a thing, and instead deals more with the substance of which something is empty (Westerhoff). Moreover, he asserts that understanding this There is a coherence, so that conventional truth cannot be constructed randomly or simply as we choose. He says “Man is a compound of needs, which are difficult to satisfy; moreover, if they are satisfied, all he is granted is a state of painlessness, in which he can only give himself up to boredom. Garfield. Because you are there, I can be here. While objects appear to exist as separate things, this sensory-cognitive appearance is illusory. 522 likes. For this reason, I think he does not mention the concept of love. ~ All views can only be conventionally true. Ultimate analysis does not negate conventional existence or truth. Emptiness of Existence "Life swings like a pendulum backward and forwoard berween pain and boredom" ~ Arthur Schopenhauer www.empexi.com Rev. Conventional truth includes what is called valid cognition because it is able to distinguish conventional truth from conventional falsehood, an important difference. It is a basic concept in Buddhism and is stressed especially in some schools of Mahayana Buddhism, including Zen. They exist mutually. 5. That is explained to be emptiness. With practice, as one continues to negate the inherent existence of all kinds of objects, as well as processes such as cause and effect and motion, emptiness becomes global. ~ Garfield, Jay, L., Priest, Graham. ~ Form Is Emptiness, Emptiness Is Form ... And as I explained yesterday, far-reaching is added here, usually translated as “perfection,” because when we have this understanding of reality, this discriminating awareness with a bodhichitta motivation – well, let me modify that – if we have it with renunciation, the true Buddhist … In his book The Snow Leopard (1987) Peter Matthiessen describes sitting on hard rocks in the Himalayas and experiencing an emptiness or Void at the heart of phenomenal existence: "These hard rocks instruct my bones in what my brain could never grasp in the Heart Sutra, that 'form is emptiness and emptiness is form' – the Void, the emptiness of blue-black space, contained in … 51. Every person experiences this at least once in life and most would argue that feelings of love stand up to the obstacle of time and the non-existent past. Understanding the two truths and the relationship between them is vital in seeing through the illusion of inherent existence and realizing emptiness or Śūnyatā. But that does not necessarily mean that we have to discount existence as a whole. Asaṅga also states: The nonexistence of duality is indeed the existence of nonexistence; this is the definition of emptiness. He explains that every yogic practice is essentially about Bhuta Shuddhi or cleansing of the elements. Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. ~ I posted this in the new emptiness group on facbook….–Greg. When we light one candle from another, the flame is neither the same nor different. However, without the role of conventional truth there could be no liberation. ( Log Out /  Because you are there, I can be here. All posts must be about philosophy. However, so, just there, just there, that your mind has been holding on to this I, this real I, which I already explained before what it means, this real I. ~ The proof stems from the realisation that … The word is Sunyata , which means empty of own being. But there are no objects hiding behind these characteristics, collecting or harboring them, no concealed core in which to find the essence of things. The first is as one of the qualities of the Tao. Thank you. ~ In short, he makes valid points but practically we should “Live in the moment” since it is indeed a constant struggle and only the present is real. Of anything that occurs, we can only address it as “happening” for a brief moment, and then it forever “was”. There is no core nature that establishes a separate self, no center to which mind and body parts or characteristics belong. It needs to have fuel and oxygen and space, etc. Because there is existence, There is non-existence, Because there is existence. Garfield, Jay L. Empty Words: Buddhist Philosophy and Cross-Cultural Interpretation. Like fire and light, subject and object are co-arisen and thus, both are empty. Garfield, Jay L. “Madhyamaka is Not Nihilism.” Smith College, University of Melbourne, Central University of Tibetan Studies, 2012. That emptiness explains how the entire universe could fit in a single black hole, possibly from which the Big Bang emerged. fine article,it is useful to me and others,please just keep it…. When phenomena are understood as dependent, conventional designations, this constitutes a conventional truth and not a conventional falsehood. This paper will explain what emptiness is, and will explain how the experiential truth of non-self serves as a paradigmatic phenomena for the Buddhist insight of emptiness. Nor is fuel such as wood, that also depends upon sun, rain, soil, etc., considered to be fire either. In order to experience the direct, non-deceptive force of emptiness, the liberating role of ultimate truth is required. That is, no thing exists eternally as … However, if we keep in mind that emptiness (shu nyata) means a lack of “own-nature” then a … I will start with a brief bit of review on the piece “The Emptiness of Existence” by Arthur Schopenhauer before offering commentary and I will also leave a link to both the essay and some history on Schopenhauer himself. For even in death, a surviving person can still have a feeling of attachment that cannot be explained to the deceased. 64-65 In this context, emptiness is seen as the opposite of “fullness.” It is here, perhaps, where Taoism’s emptiness comes closest to the emptiness of Buddhism – though at best it is a resonance, rather … … we are essenceless “selfs”, The two truths are different aspects of the same emptiness, the ultimate emptiness of phenomena and their mere conventionality.13  Nagarjuna’s doctrine uncovers the ultimate truth of emptiness as empty, as conventional, nothing more substantive, a complete and consistent deconstruction of inherent existence. ~ emptiness … Ultimate truth is fully dependent upon conventional phenomena to perceive their emptiness. Heaven: Fictitious Wonderland or Tangible Destination? Emptiness transcends the duality of being and non-being, unity and plurality, subject and object, self and non-self. This penetrating insight dates back to the original Buddha. It mistakes relative descriptions as being owned by or belonging to an object, or to a subject as in the case of a self. But there is more to the argument. Your email address will not be published. The ultimate truth of emptiness is not mediated by thought at the time of the apprehension. ~ The Emptiness of Existence by Arthur Schopenhauer 1881 [Schopenhauer needs little introduction to those with a pessimistic philosophical outlook. To exist conventionally is to not exist in a grounded, fundamental way. at the matters at hand. The paperback edition of this book is currently out of stock. An understanding of this paradox is a journey of remarkable insight and clarity. Once it has been made ours, we no longer appreciate it for what it was. Nagarjuna, Arya. Emptiness, or selflessness, can only be understood if we firstidentifythat of which phenomena are empty. For to see the deception is to be free of deception, like a magician who knows the magic trick. The concept of emptiness and its true definition has been studied, analysed and interpreted for years by many different cultures, designers, artists and philosophers. His most important work was the Mulamadhyamaka-karika (‘Fundamental Verses on the Middle Way’). In this way, everything is explained. A great point is made concerning Schopenhauer’s pseudo-proof for his belief that life just seems to not be of much value on any scale. ~ It is to appreciate the negative assertion that as soon as anything is identified, it can only be a conventional designation as nothing can truly be located or pointed to. ~ Garfield. 13. In looking for inherently existent phenomena it is revealed that they cannot be found. 6. A central part of its meaning is, however, that nothing has intrinsic existence (self-existence, svabha¯va). They are empty and conventional, the only way there could be mountains. If I am not empty, I cannot be here. It is the direct, non-conceptual perception of the emptiness of phenomena. Just enough words, not one word extra, nor one word too few. The illusion of inherent existence is dispelled. ~ Of our will, we are insatiable. Phenomena appear, function and exhibit consequences, but do so dependently and conventionally. If we are ever to embrace Buddhism properly into the West, we need to be clear about emptiness, since a wrong understanding of its meaning can be confusing, even harmful. In terms of Western philosophy, we might think of this as saying that … It’s our search for personal mean - ing in the face of a finite existence, as explained by psychoanalyst Erich Fromm [2]: [Man’s] awareness of himself as a … The Two Truths of Buddhism and The Emptiness of Emptiness. A beautiful and clear explanation of emptiness. “We do not say that because things are empty they do not exist; we say that because things exist they are empty.”   A Prasaṅgika-Madhyamaka   Tibetan saying 2. The attainment of what we seek brings this to an end, thus establishing a state of boredom and a desire for something new to be sought. “Thanks to emptiness, everything is possible.” That is a declaration made by Nagarjuna, a Buddhist philosopher of the second century. Moonshadows, pg. 1995, pg. སྟོང་པོ་ཉིད་, tongpa nyi; Wyl. Leibniz says that the actual world must have something rather than nothing because the actual world must be the best of all possible worlds, and something is better than nothing. Together, conventional and ultimate truth give us insight into the two different, yet corresponding modes of apprehending emptiness. The happiness found in the attainment is then momentary and quickly replaced by a new desire. It requires study and reflection. A snake is distinguished from a rope amid the coherence of interdependent existence, but not because a snake and rope have their own self-nature. Other important works included the Yuktisastika … To say that emptiness is empty means that even emptiness exists only conventionally, merely as a relative designation. Let's consider how we use the words 'Exist(s), Existed and Existence'. stong pa nyid) — the absence of inherent existence in all phenomena, which was explained by the Buddha in the sutras of the second turning of the Wheel of Dharma, and further elaborated upon by masters such as Nagarjuna and Chandrakirti. Tweet @ me: https://twitter.com/VincentKav (Expand for more) Welcome to YouTube explained! 9. In Taoism, emptiness has two general meanings. Best explanation ever. The want of a new car for example is ended by the attainment of the car. Therefore, to be empty is to only conventionally exist and likewise, to conventionally exist is the only way to be empty. The doctrine of the emptiness of emptiness reclaims a world where mountains are mountains, but no longer are they inherently existent mountains. 12. ~ There are two truths, and one cannot be understood without the other. He says of happiness “No man is happy; he strives his whole life long after imaginary happiness, which he seldom attains, and if he does, then it is only to be disillusioned; and as a rule he is shipwrecked in the end and enters the harbour [sic] dismasted”. If emptiness is empty, as in an absence, then it can only conventionally exist.9  For there is nothing that can be identified about the emptiness of things, as in the example of elephantlessness. The translation of this text, Emptiness is quite an optimistic concept. You might think that emptiness means nothingness, but it does not.Merely from reading it is difficult to identify and understand theobject of negation, what Buddhist texts speak of as true establishme… For example, anything in the past and anything yet to be are both just functions of our minds with no tangible matter to extract or experience. It is not a conceptual realization. Ocean of Reasoning: A Great Commentary on Nagarjuna’s MÅ«lamadhyamakakārikā. This is the way of Madhyamaka." ~ This is why happiness is seemingly momentary. The show that tries to make sense of YouTube! Nagarjuna’s doctrine negates ultimate truth as an independent base from which to assert an objective, non-empty view. 64. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Emptiness in Taoism . This absence is not an entity, just as a room without an elephant in it does not contain an elephantless substance.6  Even conventionally, elephantlessness does not exist. The Fundamental Wisdom of the Middle Way. Instead, everything depends upon conditions like fire depends upon fuel and as it does not burn itself. This is why conventional truth is referred to as nominal truth, as true in name only. The understanding of voidness does not negate the existence of the conventional “me.” We do exist, but not in the manner of a false “me.” As something imputed on a body and mind, yet unfindable inside them, our conventional “me” is like an illusion. 39. For whatever exists dependently cannot have its own being or self. 3. Garfield. The Realization of Sunyata In the Mahayana Six Perfections ( paramitas ), the sixth perfection is prajna paramita -- the perfection of wisdom. Pretty! The emptiness that the Madhyamikas describe is not an assertion of non-existence. Regarding meditation, that is an involved question, but start with understanding, with insight into the difference between how things are empty, versus how they falsely appear as if inherently existent, as if each has a core essence. Sometimes it is not possible to find the cover corresponding to the book whose edition is published. Emptiness. When one is no longer fooled by false appearances, phenomena are neither reified nor denied. Empty Words, pg. The five aggregates that comprise a sentient being, i.e. A commentary on “The Emptiness of Existence” by Arthur Schopenhauer I will start with a brief bit of review on the piece “The Emptiness of Existence” by Arthur Schopenhauer before offering commentary and I will also leave a link to both the essay and some history on Schopenhauer himself. Empty Words, pg. This recognition uncovers the ultimate truth that emptiness is empty. Just by the title, it is apparent that pessimism plays a significant role in this essay. a direct proof that existence is in itself valueless, for boredom is nothing other than the sensation of the emptiness of existence. Here Nagarjuna asserts the fundamental identity of (1) emptiness, or the ultimate truth, (2) the dependently originated-that is, all phenomena-and (3) verbal convention. Because fire does not independently exist, it appears under certain conditions and no longer appears when conditions change. The doctrine reveals that the ultimate truth about reality is that it is empty of any ultimate nature and thus of any ultimate truth. Spring 2018 AMA Series - Announcement & Hub Post! Since forms are the bases of emptiness, emptiness is form; forms appear as like reflections of emptiness. Oxford University Press, 2006. Furthermore, as there are no true objects to know, conventional truth is also the only truth there is. If a thing exists in the present, it clearly has more meaning than something in the past and can go on to mean something in the future, maybe. “Whatever is dependently co-arisen Nagarjuna’s doctrine of the emptiness of emptiness is imperative on this account. Fire, which is seen to fundamentally exist, depends upon oxygen, fuel, heat, friction, and other innumerable conditions to appear, and does not exist intrinsically, as a thing in itself. ~ This is the teaching of dependent arising, the teaching of the Middle Way, neither reifying conventional phenomena nor dismissing them as nonexistent. “They are essenceless, empty and conventional, the only way there could be mountains.” The concept translated as “emptiness” leads to all kinds of conjectures and suppositions not intended. Or am I mistaking emptiness with nothingness The constant change from boredom to misery in an unending cycle of want and attainment seems proof in itself that existence in general either has no point. Tables, fire, people and all phenomena are designated by thought in dependence upon relationally characterized parts. ~ Conventional truth provides the conceptual force necessary to subsequently perceive the ultimate emptiness of phenomena. That being a dependent designation, To recognize that phenomena dependently exist is to see that because they cannot ultimately be singled out, they can only be conventionally designated and conventionally true. It is the illusion of the inherent existence of phenomena that Buddhist philosophy targets and its nonexistence is the meaning of the word emptiness. This paper will explain what emptiness is, and will explain how the experiential truth of non-self serves as a paradigmatic phenomena for the Buddhist insight of emptiness. To learn more about what is and is not considered philosophy for the purposes of this subreddit, see our FAQ.Posts must be about philosophy proper, rather than only tangentially … Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com. This is an inevitable conclusion that can be demonstrated, purely by simple logic, to be true. Hover or Tap Each Rule for Full Details Posting Rules. ~ ~ We call a table a table because the top is characterized as firm rather than pliable, because it has legs or a base for height, and functions in one way relative to another, not because it possesses a table nature or essence. Conventional truth explains emptiness as dependent arising and ultimate truth demonstrates the “unfindablility,” the emptiness of phenomena.7  Conventionally, phenomena arise, have location and function, without such arising, location or function being actual in the realist sense, which is their ultimate truth. That includes the emptiness between the elements of atoms. [1] So, in this way, we see that there is in fact an "other" emptiness, and that this emptiness is empty of everything other than the other emptiness. Therein lies a principle that deserves recognition: Happiness is a state of desire and not a state of achievement or fulfillment. ~ Love is exactly about being content in another person without any altering of desire or want of another. That emptiness is form means that this natural lack of inherent existence -- which is the absence of a self-powered principle -- makes possible the forms which are its sport or which are established from it in dependence upon conditions. In Buddhism, this deception is called inherent existence and is identified as the root error responsible for suffering. To whomever emptiness is possible, 2. Even in canonical expositions of the emptiness of things, the idea is often explained in different, and not obviously equivalent, ways. I had to give a presentation on Nagarjuna’s Fundamental Wisdom of the Middle Way and the examples of the seed and the sprout helped clarify what I was trying to say. With that being said, it could easily be argued that some things do not boil down to the constant seeking of necessity. This would mean that we constantly live our lives seeking something better only to find at the end that the only real happiness we found was in the want of happiness. This does not mean that everything is only a name in the sense of being reducible to independent and imaginary mental activity. We don’t exist for an almost immeasurable amount of time, make a brief appearance in existence for some reason (or not), and then we return to non-existence for another seemingly endless amount of time. This meditation is a penetrating examination that uproots the fiction of the way things superficially appear to exist, as independent, inherently existent phenomena. Born in 1788 and died 1860, he was a well-known German philosopher who is best known for his 1818 work The World as Will and Representation.] Emptiness is not non-existence and it is not non-reality.1,2,3,4 However, in Yogācāra (Vijñānavāda), emptiness is taught as the inability to think of an object apart from the consciousness which thinks of that object, i.e. A feeling of emptiness. Often translated as "emptiness," sunyata (also spelled shunyata) is at the heart of all Mahayan Buddhist teaching. Understanding the two truths and the relationship between them is vital in seeing through the illusion of inherent existence and realizing emptiness or Śūnyatā. Garfield, Jay L. “Taking Conventional Truth Seriously: Authority Regarding Deceptive Reality.” Article from Moonshadows: Conventional Truth in Buddhist Philosophy. Jay Garfield. Objects are a conventional construct. This is probably where we get the colloquialism “Live in the moment”, as in with so much lost to the past and so much yet to happen, we should just live for now and accept the past and future as equally non-existent. It’s our search for personal mean - ing in the face of a finite existence, as explained by psychoanalyst Erich Fromm [2]: [Man’s] awareness of himself as a separate entity, the aware- 4. Through examination and analysis, the Middle Way school asserts that no independent phenomena exist whatsoever. Do I just need a sudden realization or more extensive meditation. To realize emptiness is not to find a transcendent place or truth to land in but to see the conventional as merely conventional. This does not mean that fire does not exist at all, but that there is no independent nature or essence that is fire. Therefore a non-empty thing In practice, life is about the constant striving for things, people, ideas, etc. Garfield. Self-existence and the real meaning of emptiness. To say that even emptiness is empty, means that all entities are conventional constructs and not truly fixed and separate things, including emptiness. śūnyatā; Tib. And as entities are ultimately unfindable, this absence that is emptiness, cannot be non-empty and findable. https://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/s/schopenhauer/arthur/essays/chapter4.html, A commentary on Chisholm’s “Identity through Time”, A commentary on the metaphysics of Peter van Inwagen, A commentary on “The Emptiness of Existence” by Arthur Schopenhauer. To say that phenomena are nominal is to say that they are conventionally constructed by what works, by what yields reliable results, not by what is, as in identifying real, self-grounded things. It is not enough to conceptually infer the emptiness of things. Conventional truth involves our everyday experience and understanding of the way the phenomenal world appears and functions. This is the emptiness of phenomena and thus, their mere conventional existence, the only existence we can know or speak of. Nagarjuna (who lived during the second century C.E) is regarded as the founder of the Madhyamaka school of Mahayana Buddhism. Emptiness of mind is non-existence from all you know as the world around you and the individual you now call yourself. This rich process is not about a “sudden realization.”. There is no observer that is separate from the observed and vice versa. This is the true meaning of emptiness. This is the Middle Way. Jay Garfield. The emptiness that the Madhyamikas describe is not an assertion of non-existence. There are two truths in Buddhism, conventional and ultimate truth. Jay Garfield. For if life, in the desire for which our essence and existence consists, possessed in itself a positive value and real content, there would be no such thing as boredom: mere existence would fulfill and satisfy us. Garfield. 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