Monday, April 20, 2015

Enlightenment in the ultimate dimension

Self-transformation from ego (separate self) to true self (non-separate self) is in the realm of the conventional truth. This level of waking up is not the real enlightenment and corresponds to the "temporary true self" of the following material. ( So, if they stop practicing mindfulness, they will go back to the previous ego within a few weeks. Thich Nhat Hanh clearly mentioned that this level is the "part-time Buddha" and is not the real enlightenment in the realm of the ultimate dimension, or the "full-time Buddha" who corresponds to the "full time true self" of the above material. If we become the "full-time Buddha", we will never go back to the previous ego even if we stop practicing mindfulness.

The difference between "temporary true self" and "full time true self" is whether there are duality and notions or not. Temporary true self is temporarily true self through mindfulness but doesn't understand that "birth and death" and "happiness and sufferings" are interdependent co-arising (two sides of the same coin), so has duality. That's why temporary true self needs transformation under the condition where all notions of pairs of opposites such as "birth and death" and "happiness and sufferings" still remain separately. On the other hand, full time true self has understood that "birth and death" and "happiness and sufferings" are interdependent co-arising (two sides of the same coin), so doesn't need to separate birth from death, happiness from sufferings, and attained non-duality (not two but not one). For example, the existence of sufferings means the existence of the same amount of happiness at the same time. Therefore, both sufferings and happiness exist but are offset to be zero. As a result, all notions, thoughts, ideas, views, beliefs and words which were created by our brain to separate oneself from others or to justify oneself, will be extinct. This is the so-called "Middle Way", or "Enlightenment" in the ultimate dimension.

In the Heart Sutra which teaches us the ultimate truth of "emptiness", non-duality is briefly explained as followings. 
「色不異空 空不異色 色即是空 空即是色」"Form is no other than emptiness, emptiness is no other than form. Form is namely emptiness, emptiness is namely form."
If we assume "form" as "A" and "emptiness (other than A)" as "B", its logic will be "Because A is made of non-A elements (B), A is no other than B. Because B is made of non-B elements (A), B is no other than A. Therefore, A is equal to B and B is equal to A." In other words, we can create the same rising-sun flag either by painting a red circle in the center of the white rectangle or by painting the rest white leaving a circle in the center of the red rectangle. This logic is applicable to every thing and phenomenon, so it is no exaggeration to say that emptiness is the ancient "general theory of relativity". Therefore, In the ultimate dimension, "Sufferings are no other than Happiness. Death is no other than Birth. Non-being is no other than Being. Darkness is no other than Light. Afflictions are no other than Enlightenment." After all, all notions are extinct and we can rest in nirvana filled with perfect solidity and freedom without fear.

(cf. 1)
(cf. 2)
(cf. 3)

Einstein's Theory of Relativity Photo by Elizabeth Therese Niwel

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