Our daily experience tells us that the world and our bodies are material things, made of “stuff.” Our Buddhist traditions however tell us otherwise, that the appearance of materiality is an illusion.
In past talks Dr. Neil Soten Theise has described his views that the universe is not material, but arises from the self-organization of quantum level entities that themselves arise out of pure Fundamental Awareness. Thus, contemporary science and philosophy can also view the world and ourselves as non-material.
But what of the non-material beings that fill Zen study texts and liturgy? Are they merely myths, metaphors, or Jungian archetypes? Or is it possible that gods, demons, angels, spirits are also as “real” as each of us? Can the Fundamental Awareness framework shed light on what is “real” and what is “not real” for us – living, sentient beings – in a non-material world?
Please note, the first 10 minutes of this talk didn’t get recorded due to a technical error but, nonetheless, all aspects mentioned above are touched upon in what was a fascinating and inspiring evening for all!