Q325. At the moment I die or when I fall asleep, does the world cease to exist?

A. Who, or what, dies or falls asleep when you die or sleep? When everything is empty, which of ‘I’, ‘death’, ‘sleep’ and ‘the world’ is not empty? Saying that everything is empty means that all of them are empty, too.

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However, when your sleep is not empty, the places such as your bed, your room et cetera where you sleep are not empty, either. When they are not empty, things and people related to the places are also not empty. When the things and people related to the places are not empty, other things and people related to these things and these people are also not empty. If we keep expanding in this way, we reach the conclusion that if your sleep is not empty, all the world is not empty, either. So, ancient masters would say that when even a grain of dust is not empty but real, all the world is real.

 

Therefore, saying that the world is empty but your sleep isn’t makes no sense at all. When your sleep is not empty but real, the world is also real. When your sleep is empty, the world is empty. To sum up, when you think that you fall asleep, the world exists. When you, however, think that your falling asleep is empty, the world is empty as well. Whatever things may happen, whether they exist or not depends upon your view.

 

©Boo Ahm

 

All writing ©Boo Ahm. All images ©Simon Hathaway

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