“Rinpoche could you please explain this line of Longchenpa. ‘ Space, as manifest design of Being’s nothingness shackles all within its iron grasp.”
Her question was asked with such innocence; her being lacked all trace of guile. Without expectation or grasping we sat in the silence of the question neither of us moving toward contrived answers. Without thought or effort speech began:
“Dynamic nothingness is the ground of all phenomena, it is the sourceless beginningless source, beginning, and ever present reality, of everything and every thing. It is mind's way of abiding in and as truth. There is no where or when or why that is other than this dynamic nothingness and it is also not, in itself, any where or when or why. Its own nature is an expanse of knowingness and this cognitive force tosses out its ownmostness as the expanse of “space”. This space is not the “space” that is a container for appearances – that is the mistaken notion of subjectivity. This space is just wide openness a playful illusion of dimensionality where the luminous radiance of nothingness – its dynamism – can cavort.
The pure cognitive intensity of nothingness’ dynamism tosses dimensionality out the way an artist lays down a sheet of paper. Then it takes the luminous clarity of its nature, like a multi colored ink, and writes secret scripts, makes meaning-full symbols on the paper of dharmata - this is all appearance.
There is one ground, two paths, two results. The one ground is the dynamic nothingness. What I call the Nothingness State or Mystery. The dynamic quality of this nothingness, that it is not a mere emptiness but a state of perfect potential, displays its potential as the seeming actualization of space, realms, worlds, beings. The first of two paths is that the cognitive intensity of knowingness/awareness does not forget that all is its own play. Then there is simply appearance as Nothingness’ illusion clothing. The second state is one where the true nature of appearance is forgotten and awareness becomes individuated consciousness within the realm, on a world, as a being – believing in its own reality the way a character in a dream believes in the reality of the dream.
In the first the body is both part and whole at one and the same time; and beyond this it is the Nothingness State . It participates perfectly, totally, and yet is free in, and as, - at the same time. In the second the body is seemingly trapped in its own small container of flesh, world, Being. Then ‘space’ as the complimentary concept to ‘Being’ is the prison of Beings. ……….. “
Sky was silent for some time and then laughing said "Yes, that's exactly how it is." The talk went on for some time, back and forth. Because her mind was free from any stain the words were met with the understanding born of perfect clarity. One body’s ability to speak meaning was met by another body’s ability for uncomplicated understanding and so there was tremendous joy in our play-full conversation. In all circumstances all conversation is, in fact, conversation between Buddha Nature and Buddha Nature. Sometimes it is even realized as such and then there is great joy.
"This is the essence of the play of sentient beings and Buddhas. The Buddha of one's own intrinsic purity appears through spontaneous boundless compassion, as every form of liberating power, to oneself to lead oneself out of delusion. What a wonder that Buddha appears and teaches Buddha himself." Longchenpa