Good day, fellow Alchemists:
Those of us who have undergone intense spiritual awakenings may have all at one point felt the sensation of unrealness when looking at life as a whole. Whether it was through transcendental meditation, a near-death experience, or a plant-medicine induced shamanic journey, the realization that reality is not real in the way we think of it becomes an unyielding truth.
This realization can be had without these sorts of awakenings.
Many people nowadays have come to similar conclusions and the notion that reality is an illusion has even begun to appear in our culture through films like The Matrix. While this is definitely a good thing that more and more people in our society are waking up, it does leave us with a dilemma. Believing that reality is an illusion can sometimes create a sort of vacuum within us, making every action seem utterly meaningless.
This is why Buddhists preach the idea that there are two truths in the Universe.
The first truth is known as absolute truth, which we have already discussed. It is the belief that reality is fundamentally empty. The second truth is known as relative truth, which states that there are truths in our lives that are independent of absolute truth.
Think of it this way:
Reality is an illusion is the absolute truth.
Tomorrow morning the sun will rise is the relative truth.
Just as much as we can't escape absolute truth, we also cannot escape relative truth.
These two truths together make a much grander perspective that takes into account the human condition. While absolute truth can make us fall into an existential crisis about our lack of meaning, relative truth comes in and forces us to take actions that are relatively meaningful. By allowing two opposing ideas to exist simultaneously in our minds, we can move onwards and work to transcend the limits of our consciousness.
This is the essence of the middle path that Buddhists advocate.
Staying balanced in our thoughts and emotions, not giving in to extremes of any one belief, and staying firm along the route of both our human and spiritual journey; that is the way to enlightenment.
With love and sincerity,
The Alchemy by LA Counsel