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Buddhadharma : Summer 2019
78 BUDDHADHARMA: THE PRACTITIONER'S QUARTERLY dependent upon enlightenment?” he is asking, Is enlightenment something apart from you? Is it outside? What is it? As practitioners, we might see ourselves as depending upon the buddhadharma, upon zazen, upon the sangha, upon the conditions necessary for practice. Let’s consider dependency from the point of view of the two truths. There is the relative realm, the world that we see and can talk about and meet every day. And there is the realm of the absolute, in which there is no time and place, no circumstance and characteristic. Within the relative world, we depend upon oxy gen and food, water and warmth, sunshine and rain. We depend upon each other, upon a sufficient amount of trust and mutual respect to share this life together and make it work. We depend upon awareness, upon a relative degree of physical, mental, and emotional health. In our practice, we depend upon lovingkindness and com passion, upon the faith that wisdom resides within each of us. The relative is the realm in which we practice and move through our day, relying upon these things. But how, in the realm of the absolute, do we rely upon something that has no form? How do we rely upon something that is timeless? How can we rely upon anything when there’s not a single thing that has permanence, that is solid and fixed? If we realize the emptiness of past, present, or future, how then do we also understand the evo lution of realization within our lives as practitioners? All things arise from, and as, the absolute at the same instant. There is mutual dependency. The moment light appears, there’s darkness; the moment there’s up, there’s down. In order for there to be a subject there must be an object, for there to be male there must be female; enlightenment and delusion need one another. All dualities are mutually dependent, which is, in fact, not dependent at all because they’re not fundamentally two. They arise together,