Excerpt About View of Totality

Recognizing and Understanding the Relationships between Various Perspectives

So the thoroughgoing inquiry into the self includes investigating those situations and constructs—like service—that we usually take for granted as bedrocks of reality. There are, of course, such things as service and helping. But as we come to question the subtle concept of separate individuals, we necessarily will question all kinds of relationships between self and other, including the idea of helping. But the view of totality doesn’t say that there aren’t separate individuals with various kinds of relationships. The view of totality simply recognizes and understands the relationships between various perspectives. It recognizes the nondual view, in which there is no separate individual, as well as the dual view, in which there are separate individuals. In his statement about the Bodhisattva, Buddha uses both the dual view and the nondual view. When he says that the Bodhisattva is one who vows to liberate all sentient beings, he uses the dualistic perspective. When he says that you are not a Bodhisattva if you believe that there are sentient beings, he uses the nondual perspective.

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