Can we ever "see" into nothing?
As anyone who has a grounding in physics (or experience with photography) knows that when you cross a boundary (like the surface between water and air) that you get a reflection as well as transmission of light.
This image below is an example, its looking into a pond (turn your head upside down and its obvious) at the mountains in the distance (as if we were looking directly at them)
We don't see the dark depths of the water, but it is no less illuminated by the light that penetrates the surface.
I turned the image upside down to show two things:
- the pond surface so smooth, it was just like a mirror
- perspectives can alter what you think you see
If it can be said that we are living in a world where there is always something, then the idea of 'nothing' really doesn't exist. Even in deep space there is something (waves, gravity, subatomic particles, atoms of hydrogen...) and we really don't have anywhere where there is nothing.
In our minds we try to imagine nothing, but its hard to imagine something which is beyond our experience, perhaps outside our possibility of experience. When I attempt to see into that "nothing" (by meditation or contemplation) there must be a boundary between the existence of my thoughts (something) and the nothing. Does such a boundary create a reflection?
Is what I see in that meditation just a reflection from the boundary into nothing?
Like looking out a window at night, we see the room reflected back at us. If there is not enough light outside we see nothing. If there was nothing (no light coming back from the moon or the stars) would we see something which we think is outside, but is actually inside the room?
So I struggle with the idea of death. Is Anita nothing now? Personally I just can't imagine this, but yet it may be true. Its easier for me to imagine that she has moved to somewhere (that fits within the scope of my experiences).
Are our thoughts about death just reflections from this boundary?
When I die do I just cease? Is there nothing? I myself no longer care ... because what bothers me most is that she is not here. Nothingness for me would just be a salve for my present pain.
If I knew there was nothing I would embrace it.
As usual I feel only discontent at this ... an urge (which I repress) to destroy things and walk away.
But I know there is no away while I remain here.