I had a brief conversation with a new joiner at work today. He asked about the ‘pain of separation’ which I had said in reply to a question he had about this blog, which I had mentioned to him, since we were talking about some work with Twitter, blogging and such. And what I found myself saying was ‘nothing is never nothing, nothing is always something’. He said, in a jokey way, that I was a little strange, or some other word I can’t remember now, we laughed and that was that.
The word ‘nothing’ is usually believed to be a concept of actual nothing – an absence of anything whatsoever. But there can be no nothing that is really nothing. For eg, you could ask: where is there anything, that is really nothing? Where is there an absence of everything? Can there actually be anything that is nothing? No!
We usually have never even thought about the concept of nothing let alone gotten our beliefs (me) out of the way so that we would be able to get what nothing actually is in a real sense – in other words, that it is always something. This really is a hilarious paradox, because our beliefs and sense of righteousness (we love being right) are so all-pervading that there really is no space for nothing! Yet we think we know that there can be nothing that is really nothing.
Okay, you may be thinking this is just a conceptual or academic discussion about the definition of nothing, but it is far more than that. Nothing is the very nature of natural reality. Nothing is what ‘spoke’ to me that night some years ago after which everything was perceived differently. There could be many names for it, and all are names, and none are 100% accurate, because no word can describe this Unrestricted Energy: Vastness, Nothingness, Emptiness, Stillness, Source, All That Is, Consciousness. It doesn’t matter what word you use, or don’t use – it’s always there, and here.
The thing is that until we sense this Space between all thoughts, we are consumed by stuff, in an effort to perpetuate ourselves. The “I” knows no respite. We have become so habituated to striving to maintain the sense of me (all people must like me, I must never show weakness, I must be first, I must win, I must be right, I must look good, I must make people laugh, I must achieve my goals, I must do this, that and the other, and on and on) that it is no wonder there are so many depressed and angry people around. Yeah, I was one of them too. Still get angry sometimes. Mostly due to people’s narcissism and self-importance, and their self-satisfaction. And what is then clear is the dissatisfaction that lurks behind the pretense and ego-stroking, then judgment evaporates. Then ‘my’ own story lifts again, as I see how I had also lost myself to self-importance for a while. I can say that the one ‘thing’ that has been able to evaporate (seemingly) anger, sadness and anxiety for me is the discovery of the space of Nothing that comes alive when the self-identity disappears.
Where we find peace and wholeness is when we are nothing. And in the nothing, life just happens, and it happens in a flowing way whether we notice it or not. This isn’t a challenge to try to get this. It actually needs no effort – a veritable absence of effort, unlike everything we have been taught about achieving things in life. Jesus is supposed to have said ‘seek and ye shall find.’ But seeking is what thought does and thought is a hindrance to finding. So it would need to be adjusted: ‘seek not and ye shall find.’
And how to seek not? Just accept that seeking is also part of the All That Is. Seeking is That. And not seeking is That. It’s all That! Hurrah – you can be ok now with whatever arises. And if suffering occurs? That’s ok too. That’s also That. In my experience, there has been much emotion to be released in a conscious way ‘on the path.’ One time I felt such grief that I knew it was either some kind of greater, collective grief or some kind of existential grief. I rather think now it was grief of separation (and no, I don’t mean divorce lol). Anyway it doesn’t matter what it’s origin was.
And such grief is still not me. Still not who we are. We are the space in between emotions, thinking and beliefs. Of course all of these are also part of It All, but we are in those moments in an identified condition, where our energy is heavy and needy and we are closed to perceiving Oneness. And that’s ok too. That’s also part of It All – the non-perception! So in the end it doesn’t matter what we are thinking or feeling or doing, and once we get that, we lighten up and become free of our own chains, and Boundless Nothing comes alive in perception.
Thanks for reading.
Comments, as always, welcome.
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