So many are actually actively seeking nothingness that one begins to wonder what is the attraction? We seek to go beyond words and thoughts, and envision "nothingness " as a "higher " state. We seek escape from the tyranny of words and thoughts, only to exchange it for the tyranny of "nothingness ". For we forget that "nothingness " is also a word, a thought. Nothingness is a mind creation, as is Nirguna Brahman, or "isness " or any of the words and ideas we have about the "unexplainable ".
The unexplainable is just that; unexplainable. Silence is a word we know. Contemplation is a word we know. Reality is a word we know. What is, we cannot know, we can only be. This is frightening, because we want to know. Some will joyously exclaim. "I know nothing ", and then proceed to tell you all about it. Of course, they will tell how they have examined all they have believed themselves to be, and found nothing of substance. They may even write a book about it. A book about nothing. Give me a break!
I hold a leaf in my hand and see oneness. If I imagine no separation, oneness "appears ", but it is imagination of my concept of no separation. Oneness is a concept. Non-duality is a concept requiring the duality of non-duality vs. duality. If I take your hand and tell you I love you, I can imagine "us " and "love ", but this is in contrast to "alone " and "indifference ", all of which belong to imagination. So what is "Real " ?
Reality is one of the great concepts that is often ignored. In the non-dual community, we engage in "vivika "; discrimination. Reality is discriminated from "illusion ". Illusion is to be ignored or eliminated, so "reality " will shine forth. We pick and choose one over the other. Yet, we claim all is one. Give me a break!
We will sit in silence attempting to meditate. We engage in Contemplation, gently moving thoughts away from our consciousness. We see "thoughts " as distractions from the thought of "silence ", and our concept of what "silence " is. When we "achieve " silence, in our terms, or open to a "nothingness " in our terms, we feel we have "made it ". We have simply traded one concept or another. Give me a break!
I can experience sadness, and proclaim that it is a ripple in the sea of perfection. I can claim that life is "perfect ", it's imperfections being only "illusions ". But what is perfection? is it more "real " a concept than "sadness "?
Before I get lost in these paradoxes (really dualistic!), let me get to my point. Life is here. We do not know what it is, but we appear to be in it. We can only "be it " by being ourselves. Some of us are "pulled " by what we are to examine. Most of us who are in the non-dual community, understand Plato's view that "the unexamined life is not worth living" . So we examine. But if we take positions of "real " vs. "illusion ", or "guna " vs. "nirguna ", we are not practicing Advaita, we are "refining " dualism into new concepts. Give me a break!
We can only live life as it is; paradoxical, confusing and nebulous. We all understand Love or some distorted concept of it. This is not an understanding that is in concepts but in the very heart of things. Our only hope is in flowing along with life as it unfolds before us. Resistance is effort, knowledge, ego. To hold a leaf without judgment; in love without understanding, to say "I love you " with every movement, finding our way as we go, yes, sometimes with fear and trembling, is all we have; all there is. "Real "and "illusion "; I am that!