Part 2 of the Randall Friend interview is up on the Urban Guru Cafe if you're so inclined.
An email from an Urban Guru Cafe listener:
Q: I was listening to Randall Friend today. I Have a question. Randall says that all this seeming manifestation, the universe of form, issues from and in a sense is "made up of" nothing. He states that this nothingness is emptiness and he uses the word "space" to refer to this nothingness. I was wondering if he means "space" in a metaphoric sense or is referring to good old three dimensional empty space, the "space" of three dimensional emptiness that most folks think the word "space" means.
I thought that not only matter and energy (the same thing, really) but also space itself was not absolute. When Randall likens the empty nothingness which underlies all reality and which is really the only reality, does he mean to say it is "space" in the sense of three dimensional empty space or is he only using the word "space" metaphorically? Does ultimate reality stand beyond space and time so that there are nor time or space dimensions at all in this nothingness that is the basis of all manifestation, or is space, three dimensional space, absolutely real?
A: Space is a pointer to what you are - a no-THING-ness. Can you qualify "space"? Can you hurt or affect space? Isn't space the "opening" in which the world appears? No matter what happens, a nice sunny day or a horrible accident - is the space in which it happens ever affected?
This is a pointer to what you are - you are the open "space" of knowing in which the body-mind happens. This activity of knowing is happening presently and is prior to the mind, prior to any thoughts.
And we call this knowingness - awareness, consciousness... only we're identified with the body-mind and miss the pure witnessing consciousness in which it all happens.
The world appears in this pure consciousness - like a moving picture of forms (bodies, buildings, etc). We don't "see" the underlying substance but the world of appearance is formed from this one substance - the very body is not different or separate than any other "thing" appearing - except it appears that way in the mind. Mind creates the distinctions and qualifications.
But mind cannot comprehend or qualify "space". This emptiness is the essence of the world of appearances. The appearances are made of this same "one substance" - only we focus on the appearances and miss the "space", miss the consciousness, miss the "one substance".
All appearances are ALREADY part of this "one substance" appearing as two. All appearances are already part of this illusion. The very perceiver of this illusion is part of this illusion. Even "one substance" dissolves as a concept, as it only appears within this very same illusion, this very same consciousness of a world formed from emptiness.
So any answer found, any thought or action or decision or reading or seeking or meditating, is seeking an answer in THAT which is ALREADY false. There is not one single "thing", be it thought or form, which is outside of this.
So we're left with nowhere to go, nothing to do, nothing to gain or lose, no coming or going, no arising or subsiding, no birth or death - all concepts which are ALREADY false and already part of the illusion. We're left with nothing to stand on, nothing to grab hold of, we're falling but there is no up or down. And we're only falling because we're looking for an answer in an illusion, looking for water in a mirage. Looking for a "Ron" in an ocean of nothingness.
Anything known is part of this illusion - any knowledge or wisdom acquired is more of the same "no-thing-ness". Any possible answer that arises is ALREADY false, already part of the illusion and made of emptiness. The answer and the seeker of the answer are both part of this illusion and never actually happened.
This is the peace of Not-Knowing.