121. Space in Buddhism

Space is both the trope and reality of Buddhism. It makes possible freedom, expression, experience and unfolding.

When we start to practice, we can’t find space anywhere. Our mind feels like a mass of disgruntled demons, packed into a cellar. One part moves, and the rest move, in reaction.

We might imagine space in Newtonian terms, or as an absence, but that’s not what’s meant.

It is both figurative and real. It is not absence. Even though there are many of us in this room, it is full of space: above our head, in front of our heart, behind us. The space holds us.

This space holds all things. But not as something there before being. If there was no space, there would be no life. If there was no life, then there would be no space. If all the fish go, the ocean vanishes. If all the birds go, the sky collapses.