Nirvana Transcends Mind & Matter

If Dharma practice is
for becoming ‘nothing’,
it would be nothing helpful.


“… There is, monks, that base where there is neither earth, nor water, nor heat, nor air; neither the base of the infinity of space, nor the base of the infinity of consciousness, nor the base of nothingness, nor the base of neither-perception-nor-non-perception; neither this world not another world; neither sun nor moon.* Here, monks, I say there is no coming, no going, no standing still; no passing away and no being reborn. It is not established, not moving, without support. Just this is the end of suffering [i.e. Nibbana; Nirvana].” (Ud 8:1;80)

[Note: The negation of the physical elements can be taken to deny, not only the presence of matter in Nibbana, but also the identification of Nibbana with the experiences of the jhanas, which still pertain to the realm of form. The following four items negate the objects of the four formless meditative attainments in Nibbana.]

“… There is, monks, an unborn, unbecome, unmade, unconditioned. If, monks, there were no unborn, unbecome, unmade, unconditioned, no escape would be discerned from what is born, become, made, conditioned. But because there is an unborn, unbecome, unmade, unconditioned, therefore an escape is discerned from what is born, become, made, conditioned.” (Ud 8:3;80-81)

In the Buddha’s Words: An Anthology of Discourses from the Pali Canon
Edited & Introduced by Bhikkhu Bodhi

[Note: The Buddha never taught Nibanna to be nothingness, for if it were so, he would simply define it as so. Instead, he defines Nibbana in an elaborate manner, to emphasise that it transcends the limitations of mind and matter.]

Related Article:

Why Romanticise Nothingness?

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