​Understanding without understanding is true understanding


If you use your mind to study reality, you won’t understand either your mind or reality. If you study reality without using your mind, you’ll understand both. Those who don’t understand, don’t understand understanding. And those who understand, understand not understanding. People capable of true vision know that the mind is empty. They transcend both understanding and not understanding. The absence of both understanding and not understanding is true understanding.

Seen with true vision, form isn’t simply form, because form depends on mind. And mind isn’t simply mind, because mind depends on form. Mind and form create and negate each other. That which exists exists in relation to that which doesn’t exist. And that which doesn’t exist doesn’t exist in relation to that which exists. This is true vision. By means of such vision nothing is seen and nothing is not seen. Such vision reaches throughout the ten directions (OMNISCIENCE, to gain the wisdom of all things everywhere) without seeing: because nothing is seen; because not seeing is seen; because seeing isn’t seeing. 

What mortals (ordinary human beings, unenlightened) see are delusions. True vision is detached from seeing. The mind and the world are opposites, and vision arises where they meet. When your mind doesn’t stir inside, the world doesn’t arise outside. When the world and the mind are both transparent, this is true vision. And such understanding is true understanding.

To see nothing is to perceive the Way, and to understand nothing is to know the Dharma, because seeing is neither seeing nor not seeing and because understanding is neither understanding nor not understanding. Seeing without seeing is true vision. Understanding without understanding is true understanding.

12 thoughts on “​Understanding without understanding is true understanding

  1. Oooh. Love this Philip.

    It is tough, as I read this, what echoes in my mind is Man our words make things so damn confusing!!!! I follow this completely, yet I am lost at the same time. Because I suppose it is all a paradox. The paradox is quite simply: nothing can be put in a concept. If you can conceptualize it, it is not it. It is beyond all concepts. Beyond our human understanding. Or maybe beyond egoic understanding. Beyond the thinking analytical mind.

    What is Love? Can love truly be put in a concept? As a mother, I cannot adequately put my love for my children in words, yet any parent would nod at the sentiment. This is beyond thought. Beyond understanding. It’s immersive.

    I suppose I knew I was on to something the day I realized I knew nothing at all. Watts said Nirvana and despair mean quite the same thing that blew my mind and made me see all these words and concepts were what were causing my own confusion.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Thanks for the loving kindness!

    There is no paradox, its the most straightforward article ever published here. It is as you say: nothing can possibly be fitted in a mere concept. This is the problem with the whole of modern life, everything has been reduced to science and now that means the unseeable is no longer afforded reverence. That is how in the modern world the lower modes of life have risen to a record high that everyone has become godless. We are enchanted to always depend on our egoic understanding and as a result the world is a mammoth tower of babel. Everyone being trapped in the analytical mind, even those who would otherwise be the saviours of others.

    What is love? Love cannot be confined to four miserable letters. One has to conquer all their fears and foibles in order for them to know what love truly means. The confirmatory test for love is in the end it should morph into altruism, the sense of “universal responsibility” that is the sign of all properly awakened men and women of past, present and future.

    Allan Watts might have been right. Despair and Nirvana have a very thin line in between for , it is when we reach a point of peculiar despair that the Divine begins to manifest in inconceivable ways.



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