Every moment of experience is contingent on a vast complex of myriad conditions. Nothing exists in and of itself as ‘this’ or ‘that,’ ‘self’ or ‘other.’ Everything is what it is only in relation to what it is not. To recognize this emptiness is not to negate things but to glimpse what enables anything to happen at all. ~ Stephen Batchelor, “Nagarjuna’s Verses from the Center”
Buddha and Mara
Buddha and Mara are figurative ways of portraying a fundamental opposition within human natures. While “Buddha” stands for a capacity for awareness, openness, and freedom, “Mara” represents a capacity for confusion, closure, and restriction. To live with the devil is to live with the perpetual conflict between one’s Buddha-nature and one’s Mara-nature. When Buddha-nature prevails, fixations ease and the world brightens, revealing itself as empty, contingent, and fluid.
-Stephen Batchelor, “Living With The Devil”
( I recently bought, ‘Living With the Devil’ by Stephen Batchelor. I have not put the book in my ‘To Be Read’ (TBR) stack yet. Soon though, soon! ~ Debra )