The Challenge of Nothingness
In another dyad recently I entered a contemplation on emptiness and formlessness. An image arose which seemed to describe my situation in life these days. I am sitting on the edge of a cliff looking out at a vast emptiness, nothingness, or void. Everything that used to give meaning to my life has been falling away and this nothingness is what remains. There is a sense that I am still here in some way, separate from this void. Sometimes there is more openness to the emptiness, sometimes less. The thinking mind resists the void and contracts in fear in the face of it, either subtly or obviously, and this is felt in the body-mind as a flatness, dullness, lack of full aliveness.
This image was pleasing as it seemed to represent closely how I was conceiving things to be these days. But then the seeing happened that even this seemingly "true" image was completely unstable and subject to dissolving at any moment into complete not-knowing of anything, not having any representation, picture, or thought about my self or my experience. It was then seen that a deeper "truth" is the need to completely surrender everything, all knowing, into the not-knowing, to let go of every way of conceiving my self and my life and to "trust" the Unknown, that which is beyond thought and the conceiving mind. And this had to happen right now. But there was no way to "do" that, no movement of thought, no strategy that was not part of the known, the realm of thought and concepts.
Somehow in seeing all this clearly there was a sudden melting and a welling up of lightness, joy, and laughter. I'd been making a big deal of it and suddenly there was such an ease, simplicity, and obviousness to it all. A letting go or shift happened with no manipulation of thought and there I was, or Beingness was, just simply being. Such a sense of bliss was present, permeating every cell of my body, and a feeling of everything being resolved and at rest or peace in this Beingness.
There came a sense that in contemplating these matters so many times and having the experience of coming home to my true nature then moving away from it, then returning home again so often that there is easier and easier access to "home". However, the resistance to the perceived emptiness, to complete not-knowing, was lately creating a subtle sense of separation from home much of the time, a kind of dissatisfaction and even cynicism with my experience of life. The joy and bliss is here as I write this and any thoughts about its continuing or being lost are just thoughts without significance arising in the space of not-knowing from which the joy is arising and expressing itself.