NOTHING IS EVERYTHING
"Nothing Is Everything" Is Self-Enlightenment
Enlightenment is an endless process of knowing and understanding anything and everything that is simply there and is available to all since the beginning of time. It is like knowing that at sunrise you will see sunlight as long as you open your eyes; its presence is permanent-but you just have to open your eyes to see its presence, and even the blind can just feel the presence of the sunlight.
Li Ching-Yuan, a Chinese herbalist, martial artist, and tactical advisor, known for his extreme longevity of well over 200 years-which far exceeded the longest confirmed lifespan of 122 years of a French woman-gave his profound wisdom on enlightenment:
Before I had studied Zen for thirty years,
I saw mountains as mountains,
and waters as waters.
When I arrived with a more intimate knowledge,
I saw that mountains are not mountains,
and waters are not waters.
But now that I have got its very substance,
I am at rest.
For it is just that I see mountains once again as mountains, and waters once again as waters.
Enlightenment is effortless and spontaneous. So, if you strive to know and understand anything and everything, the enlightenment may never come. But that does not matter because you may already have the wisdom to see that “mountains are not mountains, and waters are not waters.”
The truth of the matter is that your mental capability to see “mountains once again as mountains, and waters once again as waters”-which is the enlightenment itself-may or may not come to you now or even for the rest of your life. Enlightenment may still be important to you, but not that important. After all, many of us may all pass through life with some wisdom but without really attaining our self-enlightenment. Having said that, it is important that at least you see “mountains are not mountains, and waters are not waters”-which is already profound human wisdom.
Yes, illusion and delusion may go on indefinitely, but enlightenment may take only a moment. It is the very moment of consciousness without being self-conscious.
The realization that nothing is in fact everything gives you freedom and liberation from all your previous attachments. Letting go to let God is self-enlightenment. Returning to dust is actually the only pathway to everything; physical death is just a way station on the road to eternity, and that nothingness ultimately becomes everything in the life to come.
Copyright© by Stephen Lau
The Paradox of "Nothing Is Everything"
“Nothing is everything” is a paradox. In life, there are many paradoxes. The way of paradoxes is the way of attaining the ultimate truths of anything and everything. Knowing and understanding a paradox requires wisdom to see different human perspectives in anything and everything.
Paradoxes may be the way to wisdom, to the miracle of life, and ultimately to enlightenment.
Christopher Paul Gardner, an American author, entrepreneur, investor, and philanthropist, was very poor and homeless in the early 1980s. Sleeping on the floor of a public toilet, Gardner never dreamt that he would become a multi-millionaire one day. His inspiring life story was made into a hit Hollywood movie: “The Pursuit of Happyness.”
Gardner was brought up with the belief that he could do or be anything that he wanted to do or be. At some point in his life, he was homeless; everything seemed nothing, just emptiness and nothingness, to him. But he was not hopeless. He continued to dream of wealth and success, and his dreams were not mirages. Because of his right doing and right thinking, he made his dreams come true.
Initially, Gardner made his living by selling medical equipment. He did not make enough money to make both ends meet, and his poverty made him homeless for a year.
Then, one day, Gardner met a stockbroker in a red Ferrari, who offered him internship because of his incredible drive and sustained enthusiasm. Thus he began his successful investment career, and he subsequently opened his own investment firm, Gardner Rich & Co.
More than two decades later, after the death of his wife, who challenged him to find his true happiness and fulfilment in the remainder of his life, Gardner made a complete career change. He was suddenly awakened to the notion that his fame, success, and wealth seemed like nothing to him then. His feeling of nothingness transformed him completely: he then became a philanthropist and a motivation speaker traveling around the world, focusing not on his own wealth, but on humanity and the needs of others to pursue their happiness.
According to Gardner, life journey is always a process of lesson learning and forward moving: “People often ask me would I trade anything from my past, and I quickly tell them no, because my past helped to make me into the person I am today.” Yes, nothingness could be everything to him. Indeed, it was nothingness that had transformed him into everything that he had always dreamt of.
Copyright© by Stephen Lau
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