the void

The void is indescribable through language. An attempt to describe it defeats the purpose, for it subtracts from it’s meaning, or presents a schism, categorization of some sort where there isn’t any, or falls short by encapsulating a part of it.

“We constantly seek to find, in the Quality event, analogues to our previous experiences. If we didn’t we’d be unable to act. We build up our language in terms of these analogues. We build up our whole culture in terms of these analogues.” – Pirsig

“Whenever you parry, hit, spring, strike or touch the enemy’s cutting sword, you must cut the enemy in the same movement. It is essential to attain this. If you think only of hitting, springing, striking or touching the enemy, you will not be able actually to cut him. ” – Miyamoto Musashi

“We look at it, and we do not see it, and we name it “the Equable” We listen to it, and we do not hear it, and we name it “the Inaudible.” We try to grasp it, and do not get hold of it, and we name it “the Subtle.” With these three qualities, it cannot be made the subject of description” – Lao Tzu

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6 comments
  1. justuju said:

    Looking for this void or quality or perfection or God or whatever, seems to me like walking around in a trail-less forest in a foggy dark night with a very dim light, not knowing what we are searching for. Could it be that each of these philosophers and thinkers see something vague and try to describe (or not) to those few who are also searching? Sometimes I wonder if those people sitting at home with family and watching TV without these concerns are the ones who’ve already found ‘it’ (whatever it is).

  2. justuju said:

    I know that my previous comment looks like it’s coming from the people in the cave (koopa mandooka as they say in India), but I still wonder if there is no cave and what we see, touch, feel and think is really the extent of what we can know. Also, the exposure we have or seek to various things allows us that experience but excludes us from others. A buddhist monk meditating in a monastery explores the mind and seeks to understand and reach life satisfaction through it and a mid-westerner tries to seek the same through hard work and family. Each of us, no matter which path we choose, are limited by the realm of our own search.

    • I am not sure how to respond to this. Some of what you say I agree with. When it comes to the midwesterner and TV, I am not sure we are talking about the same “it.” If one does not seek to understand “the void” then I am not sure what we mean by they have found it. If you mean the midwesterner is happy, that might be so. If you mean that they do not have anything more/metaphysical they need to find, that may also be true. The talk about the void is only relevant if one is looking for something like it, otherwise it is not relevant.

      • justujuu said:

        I`m not good with expressing my thoughts but let me try again. If this void is a state of mind, it can be achieved by different people through diffent means, can it not? Such as a cabinet maker through making the best cabinet he can make, a monk through meditation or a dancer through her flow. Or it could be even a labourer doing menial work. The cabinet maker or the dancer or the worker may not actively seek or even know that they have found `the void`, but may be they routinely do. I wonder if philosophers complicate it more.

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