Although Siddhartha realized emptiness, emptiness was not manufactured by Siddhartha or anyone else. Emptiness is not the result of his revelation, nor was it developed as a theory to help people be happy.
Whether or not Siddhartha taught it, emptiness has always been emptiness, although paradoxically we can’t even really say that emptiness has always been, because it is beyond time and has no form. Nor should emptiness be interpreted as negation of existence — that is, we can’t say that this relative world doesn’t exist either — because in order to negate something, you have to acknowledge that there is something to negate in the first place.
Emptiness doesn’t cancel out our daily experience. Siddhartha never said that something spectacular, better, purer, or more divine exists in place of what we perceive. He wasn’t an anarchist refuting the appearance or function of worldly existence, either. He didn’t say that there is no appearance of a rainbow or that there is no cup of tea.
We can enjoy our experience, but just because we can experience something doesn’t mean that it truly exists. Siddhartha simply suggested that we examine our experience and consider that it could be just a temporary illusion, like a daydream.
Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
from the book What Makes You Not a Buddhist
Read a random quote or see all quotes by Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche.
Further quotes from the book What Makes You Not a Buddhist:
- The impossible is possible
- Driven by ambitions
- Understanding the nature of enlightenment
- The primordial absence of defilements
- Products and parts
- Corrosion begins as soon as creation begins
- Clinging to our hopes and fears
- The real enemy
- Where will they scatter my ashes
- Acts of Generosity
- Today is the death of yesterday
- Being a Buddhist
- Primordial purity
- What is in the mind of a Buddhist
- A practicing Buddhist
- A simple, scientific fact
- Living fully