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The four formlessness – Part Four

We started this journey in 2019, beginning with the concept of Non-I or formlessness of I. Are you having fun re-interpreting your experience with life so far?

When we do not cling to the concept of a permanent I, we slowly loosen our grip of believing that there is someone trapped in our physical body. If we learn to perceive our sense of being, as an illusion caused by the various interacting psychological factors, we recognize how these psychological factors are constantly being influenced by our senses.

When these pieces come together, we feel more “in charge” of ourselves. Karma makes sense and is infallible. We appreciate the precepts and Buddhist practices better. Everything makes sense and our faith in Dharma deepens. We know for sure that we can become Buddha if we create the correct karma. Thus, the doctrine of emptiness doesn’t make us disregard karma. It actually make us more enthusiastic about Karma. Make sense?

This contemplation of non-I need to be done daily. We need to embrace this new idea. In short we contemplate the interdependent origination of our sense of being. We place ourselves under a scope and get to know ourselves better. All this is still under contemplation. We have not actually realize it yet.

Once we realize non-self, we will know it. But meanwhile, our contemplation and reflection will bring us a new experience of life. Isn’t that wonderful?

Formlessness of people – 无人相

Okay, so we start examining ourselves and learn to recognize how our sense of “I” is being “triggered”. Like trying to see through the tricks of a magician? We remind ourselves constantly that our sense of being in our body is an illusion.

Next we appreciate other people are also under the same illusion; They are also non-I. That sense of “emptiness” is not depressing because it is not nothingness. We see how everybody is suffering because of their illusion of I. How everybody is caught-up in protecting their sense of “I”; which is just a mistaken perception. Thus, a sense of great compassion arise in our mind. (not everybody gets to learn dharma. even when there is a chance to learn dharma, not everyone will embrace the teaching of emptiness, and etc)

With that sense of compassion and emptiness, the way we interact with the world changes.

Therefore, our practice everyday revolve around emptiness of I and people. Like when we sit together with family or friends, while interacting with them; bring forth this understanding of emptiness in our mind. That shift of perceptive will affect how we interact or react to our environment. For example, something said or done might have upset us in the past; with this new perceptive, it doesn’t bother us that much anymore. Make sense? When we do not take things personally when perceiving “I” and “others”, we see less problem, cause less problem…..More easy going. A useful skill for happiness.

When we learn to see beyond the “prison” of “I” and breakdown the perception of “others”, I think the world becomes connected and closer? All these are still knowledge level. Contemplation level. Practice level. Throughout the day, we swing from non-I perspective to our old habitual sense of being. We experience for ourselves, how non-I create peace and happiness in our mind, we also see how “I” is problematic. As we practice, our mind will shift gradually. This is the gradual path for obstinate mind. Ha ha ha.

Otherwise, just like the 1st 5 disciples of Buddha, The 4 noble truths would have resulted in realization of non-I instantly….

Note: Right understanding and view of emptiness does not cause anxiety or depression. If a word is needed to describe it; Wonderful – full of wonder (妙)

Practice until we realize emptiness of “I”. Why did I not include “non-people”? good question…. 😉

May all be well and happy.

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