Emptiness Survival Kit. Part 3: Fill The Emptiness. Day 28: Emptiness Is Not A State But A Way.

Contingency is emptiness
Which, contingently configured,
Is the middle way.

— Nagarjuna

“Emptiness is not a state but a way. Not only is it inseparable from the world of contingencies, it too is “contingently configured.” To experience emptiness is not a descent into an abyss of nothingness but a recovery of the freedom to configure oneself as an intentional, unimpeded trajectory through the shifting, ambiguous sands of life.” — Stephen Batchelor, Nagarjuna’s Verses from the Center

*  *  *  *  *

    Emptiness, the void, darkness, nothingness, uncertainty, abyss, existential dread, feeling numb or like “something is missing” are all symptoms of what I call the emptiness practice (also known as “the dark night of the soul”). It is a tough practice. This Emptiness Survival Kit is based on my learnings in the last couple of years and is a summary of key quotes, tips and practices that helped me and I hope help you to get through it. I plan to post daily for a sum total of 42 posts. See you on the other side.

About lolkin

Nomad of the Universe, sailing through the unknown, learning to be happy and give happiness back
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4 Responses to Emptiness Survival Kit. Part 3: Fill The Emptiness. Day 28: Emptiness Is Not A State But A Way.

  1. I had forgotten all about Stephen Batchelor. I read a book he wrote on secular mediation many years ago. You know Lola, Buddhism is definitely “the Way”. I have no doubt about that. I must take my practice more seriously.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lolkin says:

      I keep hearing about him but never read his books. Did you like his book? I am subscribed to Tricycle, an online Buddhist magazine, where I stumble into him now and then. When it is time for serious practice, it will be time for serious practice, no pressure 🙂


      • I loved his book. I must have read it almost 30 years ago. I was in a particularly bleak patch having left Hong Kong and banking and wondering what to do next. I am not sure i fully understood the book at the time. I think I was seeking miracles, and those seem rather hard to find. Perhaps I have a rather more realistic attitude nowadays.


  2. “Stephen and Martine follow the ancient Buddhist tradition of not charging for the teachings they give.”. Stunning. Those are people I can truly respect.

    Liked by 1 person

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