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There are no such ‘things’ as ‘time’ & ‘space’.

There are no such ‘things’ as ‘time’ & ‘space’.
February 07
12:21 2019

Wei Wu Wei

We tend to misunderstand the nature, and exaggerate the importance, of ‘time’ and ‘space’. There are no such ‘things’ (they do not exist in their own right): these come into apparent existence, i.e., they ‘function’ only as a mechanism whereby events, extended spatially and sequentially, may become cognizable.
They accompany events and render their development realizable. In themselves they have no existence whatever. They are appearances, and their apparent existence is deduced from the events they accompany and render perceptible. They are hypothetical, like the ‘ether’, symbols, like algebra, psychic inferences to aid in the cognizance of the universe we objectify, and they neither pre-exist, nor survive apart from, the events they accompany, but are utilized in function of each such event as it occurs.

Where there is no event there is no need of ‘time’ or of ‘space’—and in their absence we are no longer in bondage —for there is no one to believe that he is bound. Time is only an inference, devised in an effort to explain growth, development, extension and change, which constitute a further direction of measurement beyond the three that we know.
The Pseudo-Problem of ‘Suffering’
Who is there to suffer? Only an object could suffer. I am not an object (no object could be I), and there is no I-object nor I-subject, both of which would then be objects. Therefore I cannot suffer. But there appears to be suffering, and its opposite, both pleasure and pain. They are appearances, but they are experienced. By whom, by what?

They are apparently experienced, and by means of an identification of what I am with what I am not, or, if you prefer, by what we are not, illusorily identified with what we are. What we are does not know pain or pleasure, what we are does not, as such, know anything, for in neither case is there an objective entity to suffer experience.
Whatever intensity sensations may appear to have, in the dream of manifestation they are effects of causes in a time-sequence, and apart from the time-sequence in which they develop they are not either as cause or as effect. There is no one to suffer. We appear to suffer as a result of our illusory identification with a phenomenal object. Let us at least understand. What we are is invulnerable and cannot be bound.

The mechanism of living seems to be based on the notion that what sentient beings do is due to an act of volition on the part of each such phenomenal object. It is obvious, however, that they react rather than act, and that their living is conditioned by instinct, habit, fashion, and propaganda. Their way of life is primarily a series of reflexes, which leaves a limited scope for deliberate and considered action

Excerpted from ‘Open Secret’. Terence Gray, better known by the pen name Wei Wu Wei, was a 20th-century Taoist philosopher and writer



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