Awareness and Reality: Beyond the Boundaries of Experience

Have you ever felt completely exhausted by experience itself? Not necessarily exhausted from a specific event, but simply tired of the relentless nature of thoughts, emotions, and sensations bombarding you? There are moments when this fatigue with everything we know makes us yearn for something different, something less substantial.

Bentinho Massaro describes how this exhaustion with ordinary experience can become a portal to a profound new state. In this state, he describes something he calls “nothingness” – a realm that lies beyond our familiar senses and ways of knowing. But is this state truly “nothingness,” or is it something altogether different? Let’s dive deeper into this elusive concept.

Three Shades of Nothingness

According to Ben, there seem to be three distinct types of “nothingness.”

  • The Nothingness of the Mind: This is a blank state we might imagine or conceptualize. It might arise during meditation when we try to let go of all thoughts and sensations. When achieved, it is often mistaken for profound realization.
  • The Nothingness of the Causal Body: The causal body is a subtle energetic layer beyond the mind and senses. Ben suggests that when we transcend ordinary mental boundaries but haven’t fully realized our deeper nature, we can experience this causal body. While still a profound state of clarity and expansion, it isn’t the ultimate realization.
  • The Nothingness at the Threshold of Absolute Reality: This “nothingness” lies on the brink of the most profound realization possible. We encounter it when we turn our attention away from all forms of awareness and consciousness, surrendering into a profound unknown. It acts as a kind of gateway or transition point.

Transcending Awareness

But what happens when we move through this mysterious gateway of nothingness? Ben describes it as similar to passing through a black hole where we completely exit our conventional perceptions. This isn’t a loss of consciousness, however. On the other side, there’s a radical shift — a sense of being the infinite reality itself. This ultimate realization transcends all concepts, including that of nothingness. It’s not truly empty but vibrantly real in a way that simply can’t be put into words.

The Paradox of Being and Non-Being

So, is it simply about transcending or is there a deeper paradox? It seems that even after this ultimate realization, there’s still room for growth and a return to “the game” of relative reality. The realization might lead us to both fully engage in the here and now (filled with its messy entanglements) while simultaneously remembering the boundless nature of our true being. It’s complex, strange, and a bit contradictory, a dance between absolute truth and the dance of this human experience.


“The moment you turn your back on awareness, then it is again like initially…this nothingness but it has a bit of a weird sort of magnetic pull to it…” – Bentinho Massaro

Bible Reference

There is a resonance of this concept in Christian mysticism: “Be still, and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10). Stilling the mind, transcending our limited ego, leads to a sense of something vastly greater, perhaps akin to Ben’s description of Absolute Reality.