1. "Characterized by actuality” corresponds
to Emptiness in the Primary Sense.
2. "Not upside-down" refers to the Internal Emptiness of the
six sense organs. If inwardly, one is emptied of the eye,
ear, nose, tongue, body and mind, there will no longer be a
self or attachments to self. If inwardly one is not
upside-down, one will not be turned by the six sense organs.
3. "Not moving" refers to the External
Emptiness of the six sense objects. With outward emptiness,
one is not swayed by the six sense objects, but remains
4. "Not retreating" refers to Neither
Internal nor External Emptiness, which is actually Both
Internal and External Emptiness. One does not retreat to the
position of ordinary people, nor to the position of the Two
Vehicles. The inner and outer are both empty, so one does
5. "Not turning." Can any of you guess
what emptiness this refers to? We already have Emptiness in
the Primary Sense, Internal Emptiness, External Emptiness,
and Neither Internal nor External Emptiness, which is
actually Both Internal and External Emptiness. What
emptiness does "not turning" correspond to? It refers to the
Emptiness of the Empty. I believe someone will know. Can you
guess? Let's see how much wisdom you have. Don't just blurt
out the first thing that comes to mind. What emptiness
corresponds to "being like empty space"? [Disciple: ... ]
[Disciple: Emptiness in the Middle.] Emptiness in the Middle
is simply Internal Emptiness. It is said that the Four
Elements are empty. How do they become empty? "The five
skandhas are empty." How do they become empty. "He
illuminated the five skandhas and saw that they are all
empty." How do you illuminate them? So, what emptiness does
"being like empty space" refer to? How about "without a
nature"? Speak up! Now, would you call this the Emptiness of
Not Speaking, for if you speak, then it is not empty! Not
bad, Guo Ning got it right. He guessed correctly that it is
the Emptiness of the Empty. I knew that people who want to
study the Buddhadharma would be able to guess it, even if
they have not heard it explained before.
You see, we already had Emptiness in the
Primary Sense, Internal Emptiness, External Emptiness, and
Both Internal and External Emptiness. You have become empty
in the Primary Sense, emptied inside, emptied outside, and
are empty both inside and out, so now you have Emptiness of
the Empty, and he was able to guess that. I wanted to see if
he truly understood, so I also asked him what emptiness
"being like empty space" refers to. Then he got nervous and
said his answer was wrong. Actually he was right, but he
thought he was wrong, so he didn't really know it. The same
thing happened this time. He had guessed it, but then got
confused when I asked another question. What a pity.
"Not turning" refers to Emptiness of the
Empty, in which all dharmas are broken through, destroyed,
and emptied. If all is emptied, how can there be any dharma?
If all is emptied, and yet a dharma of emptiness remains,
then you have not broken through yet. You are attached to
emptiness. When emptiness itself is empty, then all dharmas
have been destroyed. What is broken through are the dharmas,
and what breaks through them is emptiness. When all dharmas
have been destroyed, then there is no attachment to self or
to dharmas. Only when there is no attachment to dharma can
there be the Emptiness of the Empty. When all dharmas are
gone, that is the Emptiness of the Empty. But if emptiness
itself is not emptied, a flaw remains. When emptiness is
empty, there are no flaws, and all dharmas are destroyed.
Sweeps away all dharmas,
And leaves all appearances behind.
When all dharmas are empty, how much the
less are there any appearances. This is called "not turning"
and corresponds to the Emptiness of the Empty.
~ To be continued