Excerpt About Dichotomy

The Most Basic Fundamental Dichotomy

We have discussed the dichotomy of matter and spirit, and indicated others. The most basic fundamental dichotomy is that between being and nonbeing, or presence and emptiness. It is true that presence and emptiness are not simply cognitive experiences in the normal sense of the word. But because we know that we are experiencing presence, which is being, and emptiness, which is nonbeing, it becomes clear in pure awareness that such experiences retain some conceptual colorings. These colorings are subtle, for the concept of being is so pervasive in experience. The fact that they appear as opposites reveals them to be conceptual, even though it is the conceptuality of basic knowledge. The sense in which pure awareness neither exists nor does not exist is not related to whether it ultimately appears in experience, but to how it feels in experience. It does not feel like existence and it does not feel like nonexistence. It is both presence and absence, but actually neither, for it is innocent of conceptual coloring.

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