Anything we know, believe, or imagine is a mental construct. It’s in the mind.
Nothing is what it is thought to be. Nothing that is not an abstraction, a mental construct, that is.
Reality is not what we know. It’s beyond the mind.
the signata of Buddhism – anicca, dukkha,* and anatta° – recast:
nothing is eternal; nothing is okay; nothing is itself
*dukkha arises from ignorance (avidya=not-seeing) of the other two signata (anicca=impermanence, anatta=not-self)
As it is with nothing, so it is with the whole – with all that is … in this moment. It’s eternal. It’s okay. It’s itself.
It’s beyond the mind.
“It is not necessary that you leave the house. Remain at your table and listen. Do not even listen, only wait. Do not even wait, be wholly still and alone. The world will present itself to you for its unmasking, it can do no other, in ecstasy it will writhe at your feet.”
see also: A Quiet Mind Is All You Need (Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj)
Any permanence is in the mind. And any entity, with or without identity – a name° – is in the mind as well, as is every imagined aspect of reality.
In reality as a whole – Buddhists say – anicca, dukkha, and anatta signify all that is° … and dukkha arises with not seeing this is so.
Hidden in plain sight is the reality of all that is. It’s beyond the mind.
Catnip for anyone into the singularity – or so-called progress in general
Given the dire state we are in, you may think our focus now has to be less on doing and having, more on being and loving: metta and the other three Viharas. Even so, for those irredeemably invested in doing, doing what Elon Musk is doing beats digging up and burning – spewing into the atmosphere – carbon that conveniently for us was sequestered 360–286 million years ago in the Alberta tar sands and elsewhere.
Beyond the mind, nothing is what we think it is.
Anything or anyone we care to name – anything or anyone at all – exists beyond the mind only by convention.
Convention is the shared reality we tell each other about.
Our shared reality is what we think and say about what is. It is not what is. That is beyond words, beyond labels, beyond names: nameless.
The nameless is beyond whatever we may think, beyond even whatever we can think.
The nameless is beyond the mind. And this is where to be.
A myth is a story that encodes but does not necessarily explain a universal human experience.”
—Richard Holloway, former bishop (of Edinburgh)
All we know is stories we think are true.
Mistaking all we know for all that is puts us somewhere east of Eden.
All we have to do is see that only in the mind is what we know what is.
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Roshi Joan Halifax and His Holiness the Dalai Lama are thought of as entities, as entities with attributes.
You and I are thought of as entities, as entities with attributes.
We are thought of as characters in a mental movie.
The movie jumps from assumed reality to admitted fantasy. And back again. Over and over.
Reality – the absolute truth of what is, of what is really happening – is beyond the mind.
Reality is beyond what is thought, beyond even what can be thought.
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Reality isn’t what it’s thought to be. It’s beyond the mind. Beyond words.
In reality, what you are is beyond words. That you are is beyond doubt. Dwell on that, on being, on being aware of being. And on nothing more.°
Reality is what it always is. It’s all that is, all being. It is all that is happening in this moment, including you. And you’re aware of this.
You aren’t the person you’re thought to be. You’re beyond the mind. Beyond words.
Beyond the mind there is no difference between nirvana and samsara.°
Enlightenment is a concept, a mental construct. It’s in the mind.
Plants changed rapidly during the PETM in Wyoming. The red line here represents rising temperature, and the plants under the high part of the curve are those that lived in this part of the world only during the PETM. [credit]
The National Post picked up a recent story from the WSJ and ran it yesterday with this headline: Kerry flat wrong on climate
It’s easy to say about events in the future that we just don’t know. But it’s hard to say that about events in the past. About the PETM, for instance. (Google it. Summary follows.)
The fossil record tells us that 55.8 million years ago global temperature was four to eight degrees Celsius above the before-and-after levels. It also tells us that carbon in the atmosphere was above before-and-after levels by an amount very close to the amount still in the ground today in known fossil fuel reserves.
The good news: It wasn’t us spewing excess carbon into the atmosphere all those years ago.
The bad news: It’s us doing it now. And it’s up to us to stop doing it.
The PETM – the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum – made life interesting for a while. And it took tens of thousands of years for things to settle down again.