11: The shifting and changing in emptiness

前空轉變     The shifting and changing in emptiness that confronts you

皆由妄見     Only seems real because of ignorance


Illusions become reality when experienced by many. When these are incorporated into our own lives they acquire their own reality. After all, what is the truth concerning the things of this world except how they are experienced in our own consciousness? – Deepak Chopra, The Secret of Healing.

When the Mind is agitated by habit-energy (vasana) there rises what appears to be an external world. When the dualistic imagination ceases there is transcendental knowledge (jnana), the realm of suchness, the realm of the wise, free from appearances and beyond thought. (Lankavatara Sutra, p. 285)

“My Master Ramakrishna always told me to meditate whenever I saw an expanse of water. Here its placidity reminds us of the vast calmness of God. As myriad things can be reflected in water, so, too, the whole universe is mirrored in the lake of the Cosmic Mind.” – Mahendra Nath Gupta (Yogananda, Cp. 9)

If ye make not the below into the above and the above into the below, the right into the left and the left into the right, the before into the behind and the behind into the before, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of God. (Mead, p. 599)


Layman P’ang: (P’ang was a younger contemporary of the great master, Ma-tsu)

Old P’ang requires nothing in the world;
All is empty with him, even a seat he has not,
For absolute emptiness reigns in his house.
How empty indeed it is with no treasures!
When the sun is risen he walks through emptiness;
When the sun sets, he sleeps in emptiness.
Sitting in emptiness he sings his empty songs,
And his empty songs reverberate through emptiness.
Be not surprised at emptiness so thoroughly empty,
For emptiness is the abode of all the buddhas.
Emptiness is not understood by men of the world,
But emptiness is the real treasure.
If you say there is no emptiness,
You commit a grave offense against the buddhas.
(Suzuki, 1953, p. 341)

Robert Lanza:

First Principle of Biocentrism: What we perceive as reality is a process that involves our consciousness.

Second Principle of Biocentrism: Our external and internal perceptions are inextricably intertwined. They are different sides of the same coin and cannot be separated.

Third Principle of Biocentrism: The behavior of subatomic particles—indeed all particles and objects—is inextricably linked to the presence of an observer. Without the presence of a conscious observer, at best they exist in an undetermined state of probability waves.

Fourth Principle of Biocentrism: Without consciousness, matter dwells in an undetermined state of probability. Any universe that might have preceded consciousness could only have existed in a probability state.

Lester Levenson:

Our real beingness, our real Self, is like the screen in a cinema show. Your real Self is the changeless screen and the flitting pictures are the world. The Self of us, the screen, never moves, but all the pictures on the screen do. When you’re looking at the characters on the screen and all the play that goes on, the fires, floods and bombs don’t touch the screen. The fires don’t burn it, the floods don’t wet it, the bombs don’t destroy it. That screen, like our very own Self, is changeless and untouchable, perfect. (2003, p. 140)


Deepak Chopra and Adam Plack, “The Secret of Healing: Meditations for Transformation and Higher Consciousness” (2011).

Lanza, Robert (2009). Biocentrism: How Life and Consciousness are the Keys to Understanding the True Nature of the Universe. Dallas, Texas: BenBella Books, Inc. (download)

Levenson, Lester (2003). No Attachments, No Aversions: The Autobiography of a Master. Sherman Oaks, California: Lawrence Crane Enterprises, Inc.

Mead, George Robert Stow (1900). Fragments of a Faith Forgotten. London: Theosophical Publishing Society.

Suzuki, Daisetz Teitaro (1953). Essays in Zen Buddhism (Second Series). London: Rider and Company.

Suzuki, D. T. (1932). The Lankavatara Sutra: A Mahayana Text (Based upon the Sanskrit edition of Bunyu Nanjo, 1923). London. (http://lirs.ru/do/lanka_eng/lanka-nondiacritical.htm)

Yogananda, Paramhansa (1946). Autobiography of a Yogi. New York: The Philosophical Library. (download)

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