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Journal #27 : Buddhism in an Apple Pie

Updated: Mar 30

Buddhism in an Apple Pie

If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe. - Carl Sagan

One of Buddhism's edifying preachings is "The Three Doors of Liberation" which are,

1. Emptiness

2. Signlessness

3. Aimlessness

Emptiness is nothing but the ability to observe beyond what you see. Suppose there is a glass, half filled with water. Now you could call it half-empty. It is indeed half-empty of water but instead is half-filled with air. If you could only enhance this vision to everything around you, you would realize that everything is made up of everything else. Nothing exists by itself.

Physics has taught us that matter is made up of atoms. So, literally everything around us is made up of atoms. You, I, other species, non-living things, etc. are nothing but a complicated structure of intricately arranged and organized atoms. One cannot exist without the others. You did not come into existence on your own. You owe it your parents, and they to their ancestors. A flower owes its existence to the soil, clouds, wind, birds, animals, etc. If you observe keenly, everything in our world is connected to everything else. This only stands true if you extend it to the whole universe.

With this illuminating epiphany, if you now read the above-mentioned Carl Sagan's quote, you will find a striking resemblance to Buddhism's first door of liberation - Emptiness. The universe took around fourteen billion years to come into being, Earth, another four and a half billion years and Homo sapiens only arrived in the scene two hundred thousand years ago. It was not until the fourteenth century A.D. that the first apple pie was baked. So, you could say that it took roughly fourteen billion years for a delicious apple pie to be made. And why it is significant that you need to invent the whole universe first to make an apple pie from the scratch.

Now a question would arise in your mind. Was Carl Sagan a Buddhist? Definitely, No!

MaddiE's Note:

  • If you find any mistakes or need for improvements please comment or reach out to me.

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