Search For Utter Transcendence
The Upanishad describes Reality as Sat, Being; but it also speaks of asat, Non- being, as the Ultimate from which Being appeared. This nothing, this Nihil, is seen as a "something" which is beyond positive comprehension. Just as pure Being is the affirmation of the Ultimate as the free base of all cosmic existence, so Non-being is the contrary affirmation of the Ultimate s freedom from all cosmic existence. Non- being permits Being as Silence permits activity. It is necessary to grapple with these concepts if we are to understand the message of the Buddha. It has been said that the Buddha rejected the teaching of the Upanishads and the Veda and maintained a Nihil or a zero as final and ultimate. But examining more closely what he is reported to have said about the ultimate reality, it becomes clear that he did not want any formula that would limit what he had experienced as something incapable of being described as either Being or Non-being.
The Buddha achieved Buddhahood and the state of Nirvana when he was only 35 years old. And having reached this state, he did not cease to be engaged in activity. The possibility of having an entirely motionless personality and a void calm within, while outwardly manifesting the eternal verities — Love, Truth and Righteousness — was perhaps the real gist of the Buddha s message. Indeed, it must be affirmed that he did not represent the petty ideal of an escape from the trouble and suffering of physical birth, but rather showed that a perfect man could combine