Originally posted by CaptainMooPoo
the whole world is just an illusion so then what would that mean? That we dont really exist. That this is all just a matrix like thing. You're not
really making a lot of sense buddy. Cheerio, and stuff.
For one, it's not from The Matrix. Not originally. It's a Buddhist concept, which was pirated by the makers of The Matrix. And it makes perfect
sense - to me, anyway.
It seems everyone is misunderstanding the meaning of the word "illusion". This is how the concept of "the Great Illusion" was taught to me:
Form is emptiness; and emptiness is form.
Many people will find this line puzzling. They are equally bewildered by basic Buddhist teachings such as that the phenomenal world is an illusion,
and ultimate reality is tranquil and undifferentiated. Interestingly, modern science provides a clear explanation for this Buddhist teaching.
In our ordinary consciousness, an opponent is real. If he or she attacks you and if you fail to defend yourself there is no illusion about your being
hit. But suppose we look at the same situation from the very high level of consciousness of an enlightened being like a Buddha, or a Bodhisattva who
sees reality as it is ultimately is and not as it is grossly modified by a set of conditions. You may not have reached the level of a Bodhisattva, but
here is where modern science can help us. Suppose you look through a gigantic, super-powerful microscope. What would you see? Your opponent would have
disappeared! What you thought was the form of a person would turn out to be almost emptiness; you would see patterns of subatomic particles as far
apart as specks of stars in outer space. If you looked at yourself you would be equally astonished; your body too would have disappeared! If the
microscope were more powerful, like the wisdom-eye of a Bodhisattva, you would realize that the so-called subatomic particles are actually not
particules; they are concentrations of energy without any definite boundary.
You would suddenly be awakened to the great cosmic truth that there is no boundary separating one subatomic particle from another, there is also no
boundary separating you from your opponent or anything else. In other words, the whole Universe is actually a continuous spread of energy or
consciousness, without any differentiation. You would be awakened to the greatest truth of all - the discovery that great masters of all religions and
mystical disciplines have made - that the physical body in which, owing to your ignorance, you have imprisoned yourself, is an illusion, and that your
personal mind is actually the Universal Mind. This feeling of liberation gives us tremendous calm and blessedness. The ecstatic exclamations of great
masters such as "I dissolve myself in the infinite grace of God", "There is no difference between the Cosmos and me", "My own nature is the
Buddha nature", or even "The Father and I are one" become meaningful.
This is Zen, which in this context means a glimpse of cosmic reality in its transcendental aspect, and which is called "wu" in Chinese and
"kensho" or "satori" in Japanese, and is best translated as "awakening" in English. An awakening is not enlightenment; it is nevertheless a
confirmation that you are on the way to enlightenment if you persist in your cultivation.
Perhaps this will get the idea across, though this isn't the entirety of the lesson. I will elaborate more, if necessary.
[Edited on 3-2-2004 by LOBO]