Presence and Absence

Phenomenally I am always present,
Because phenomena are what objectively I am.
Phenomenally I appear to be absent,
Because my presence as phenomena
Conceals my phenomenal absence as noumenon.

Noumenally I am neither present nor absent,
Because presence and absence are phenomenal concepts
Inapplicable to noumenality, which is the absence
Of the absence of phenomenal presence,
Which is no-absence.

Noumenally, therefore, I am unmanifesting potentiality,
Objectively absent because unobjectifiable,
Subjectively absent because not objectifying,
Doubly absent, because absent both as subject and as object.

When I act, I act as Prajna,
And I manifest as the phenomenal universe.
Then I am present.

(© HKU Press, 1966)

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