Awareness and Emptiness: The Real Me

I recently asked myself the question “What am I?”

The answer I came up with was two-fold. When I get down to the barest of possibilities I am Awareness and Emptiness. They are a sort of binary reality but the code is merely a representation of two sides of the same coin. They are the same.

Void manifested as Matter (physics may show this through theories such as the Big Bang and virtual particles forming spontaneously in a vacuum), and matter manifested as awareness (as can be seen by human consciousness arising naturally in nature), and awareness has the ability to manifest as emptiness (that state of meditation that leaves us empty of our preconceptions). Through emptiness humans are able to see their true nature, that they are Matter, and that Matter is Void.

Void = Matter = Awareness = Emptiness = Matter = Void

Each of these terms is one way of defining the others. We know what Matter is by the contrast of knowing what Void is and vice versa. Awareness and Emptiness are just two other terms for Matter and Void, for to be Aware is to be aware of Matter and to be Empty is to become like Void.


I am awareness.

I am an awareness of events, not my attempt to define or interpret events, which happen after and only to memories. I am no label, no preconception, no concept, no other identity. I am not my thoughts, nor am I others' thoughts about me.

When I push aside everything that is not absolutely necessary to my nature, all that I have left is my awareness, my consciousness.

Awareness does not exist where I have already mapped out what I intend the world to be. When I'm not really looking at a tree but thinking of my idea of what a tree should be.

Awareness can only exist in the present moment, and though it is always present, I may not be. I must empty myself first.

It is necessary for me to be Empty in order to be Aware, as Awareness flourishes when preconceptions don't exist, when I am free to observe without judging good and bad.

When I have grown empty, removing the excess me, I become aware of my ideas for what they are—chemical phenomenon. I still have thoughts, but I do not cling to them or judge them. I observe them as I observe external stimuli. I understand that memories are happening right now, not in the past. I am no longer identified with them, but let them go as quickly as they come or as soon as they wish to depart. The habit of thinking is gone, replaced by consciousness.

When I am empty, I am aware; when I am aware, I am empty.


My “self” is essentially “Emptiness” (also called Void, or Nothingness) and “Awareness” (or consciousness). They are Yin and Yang. The Universe itself can be viewed as Material and Vacuous. There is no in between, no “not Matter and not Void,” yet we shouldn't assume that Matter and Void are opposites. They are in fact One. Matter is a manifestation of Void. Awareness is a manifestation of Emptiness.

And so the way to get to Awareness, to be “me,” is to reduce conceptual thinking. I must empty myself of labels, concepts, expectations, and preconceptions in order to be “Empty” and “Aware.” Achieving this is as simple as breathing deeply from the abdomen.

In this Awareness I and the world cease to exist as an idea, but exist as a reality. I am not fixed to ideas, and so I am free. I am not influenced by external experiences because I am not judging or defining the world around me. This may go on for a split second, five minutes, weeks, or a lifetime. It depends on my level of focus on the simplest human activity, breath, no matter what other activity I am participating in.

This is being alive.

This is Satori.

Knowing this, can I waste a moment of my time on anything but awareness? When Awareness is all I am materially, and spiritually I am Emptiness, should I spend thoughts and emotions on things that I am not?

The labels I give myself, the labels society gives me, the labels family, friends, and coworkers give me, the judgments I cast on others—none of these concepts are worth a single moment. If I trade even a second of life for an “idea” of how the world is, in-lieu of what life actually is, naked, free, infinite, I am only a fool being hoodwinked by a robber.

The robber is me, but not the real me.

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