Tip of the Field Communique

Since appearance never takes form, each appearance—inseparable from space—fills the whole of space.  DTS 33

Every time I hear that appearance fills the whole of space I think: I don’t understand but I guess it has something to do with the idea that space has no extension and that distance is just a projected characteristic that goes along with “substance”.  But saying this never seems to get me any closer to a sense that space is open and spacious.

I can’t say that I am any closer to contacting this spaciousness, but this morning I had the following notion:

An iceberg is more under the water than above, so that the space occupied by an iceberg is many times bigger than what is seen above the surface.  Add to this the fact that once an iceberg is floating in the sea it isn’t long before it melts back into the sea.  The iceberg is really the vast ocean appearing in a certain way to human eyes, and presently it returns to the ocean field from which it appeared.

Appearance could have this kind of relationship with the field communique.  We only see what enters the realm in which we live but we are thereby seeing space and knowledge as it communicates with us from a realm beyond what our focal length identifies as significant.

My thoughts about the (vast) sea are more bound to the idea of substance and extensiveness than my sense of space (filled completely by appearance).    But the idea that each appearance fills the whole of space comes a little closer when I think of intricate ice sculptures rising up briefly, before they melt back into the sea.  The appearance of something fashioned of ice, floating on the surface, is never other than the sea and therefore is one with the whole sea.

About Michael Gray

I first started studying TSK in the mid 1980's and have since attended a number of retreats and workshops at the Nyingma Institute, in both TSK and Buddhist themes. I participated in the life-changing Human Development Training Program in 1991, and upon returning to Albuquerque co-founded an organization, Friends in Time (with a friend who has Lou Gehrig's Disease), which continues to serve people with similiar disabilities. I contributed an essay to "A New Way of Being"--the last one in the book--in which I describe how learning to honor who I have been has broadened and deepened my openness to present experience. I live in New Mexico with my wife and two sons.
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