* If we are not empty of separate self, we suffer.
* If we are empty of separate self (if we are full of non-separate
self), we can be happy.
The object, or the perceived is the same. But the subject, or the perceiver is different, whether separate self or non-separate self.
Even if we perceive the same thing or phenomenon, separate self (ego) perceives it as suffering and non-separate self (true self) perceives it as joy and happiness. That's why Buddha said afflictions are no other than enlightenment.
Therefore, Buddha taught emptiness (empty of separate self) 2,600 years ago. Even if this world doesn't change, we can be happy if we transform ourselves from separate self (ego) to non-separate self (true self). This is "Emptiness".
In this sense, Buddha was a great cognitive therapist. I feel that Buddha tried to change the world by transforming people. So, Buddha was truly a great revolutionist in non-violent way.
Everything depends on who we are!
"When we realize that afflictions are no other than enlightenment, we can ride the waves of birth and death in peace, traveling in the boat of compassion on the ocean of delusion, smiling the smile of non-fear." by Thích Nhất Hạnh
Ocean to Melbourne Photo by David Liu