Monday, June 22, 2020

a multitude of others

From "the incessant workings of his mind and the physical activity
 displayed by the body... nothing of all that is from him, is him."
He, physically and mentally,  is the multitude of others.

On the mental plane, this "multitude of others" includes many beings
 who are his contemporaries: people he consorts with, with whom he chats,
 whose actions he watches. ... the individual absorbs a part of the various energies
 given off by those with whom he is in contact, and these incongruous energies, 
installing themselves in that which he considers his "I",
 form a swarming throng.
To a Westerner, Plato, Zeno, Jesus, Saint Paul, Calvin, Diderot,
 Jean Jacques Rousseau, Christopher Columbus, Marco Polo, 
Napoleon, and many others constitute a diversified crowd,...
 These names are only examples. The guests, whom X shelters
 in his particular guest-house, are not at all the same
 as those who live with Y.

"that which is compound", which is constituted by the combination of elements
 as a house is made up of stones, wood, etc., is only a collection, a group
 and in no way a real "ego".  Thus the individual is empty, 
everything is empty, because one can find nothing in it 
except the parts which constitute it.

 ~ Alexandra David-Neel and Lama Yongden
from The Secret oral teachings in Tibetan Buddhist Sects
art by Picasso