Q160. If everything, even enlightenment is empty and just an illusion, why should we try to attain enlightenment?

A. If we really know that everything is an illusion, we don’t have to make an effort to attain enlightenment since enlightenment is also then an illusion. The reason for trying to obtain enlightenment is that we have not realised in person the truth while saying that everything is empty. The knowledge of enlightenment is not enlightenment itself. The former is as different from the latter as the knowledge of a meal is different from eating the meal. The knowledge of enlightenment can no more give us eternal happiness than the knowledge of food can satisfy our hunger. We practise in order to experience, in person, the truth that everything is empty.

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©Boo Ahm

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

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