In so on. So when I say ‘I’ in

In English language, when we use the word ’empty’ and ’emptiness’ we mean ‘not filled’ or ‘the state of containing nothing’. Suppose a full glass of water. I drink the water After, I might say ‘there is nothing in the glass’ or ‘the glass is empty’. Generally what I would mean by these two statements is that there is no water in the glass yet there is no mention of water in the two statements. After I drink the water, there is no water in the glass yet there is space in the glass and this space is filled with air. In our everyday life, we automatically ignore what we are not beholding in our mind. When Buddhists use the word ’empty’ and ’emptiness’, they do not mean that there is nothing or nothing exists. For Buddhists to say a thing is empty is to say that thing is empty of a self or empty of one permanent thing. A self or one permanent thing is the essence of something and this essence distinguishes it from any other thing. If I say I am writing this essay then there is no one permanent thing that ‘I’ refers to. To write the essay I used my hands, my eyes, my brain, my body, the chair, the laptop, air and so on. I used my hands to type on the laptop, my eyes to see and read, my brain to think and decide, my body to sit on the chair, air to breathe oxygen which keeps me alive and so on. So when I say ‘I’ in ‘I wrote this essay’ I am referring to multiple things and not one of these things is a permanent single thing that does or can do the writing itself. Buddhists classifies a thing as ’empty’ with four characteristics. Divisible, dependant, impermanent and identifiable.Divisible refers to parts that comprises a thing. A divisible thing is not one single thing (an entity or a self) but of many parts. For example, a car, a house, a human etc are referred to as one thing but these words refer to things made up of parts. A car is made of various parts like wheels, body, engine, seats and many others. So car is not one thing that exists. The word ‘car’ refer to a thing that is made up of multiple parts. A car is not wheels or its body or its engine or any of its parts. We cannot reduce or equate the car to any of its parts. If we remove all parts which are not the car then nothing will remain. Therefore the car does not exist as a single indivisible thing. Similarly, a dependant thing depends of supporting things to exist. It does not exist, nor in itself or of itself. It is empty of independent existence. For example, a car exists in dependence on thoughts as an idea, in assembly of parts which are put together in a reasonable structure which becomes a car. Without the thought, assemble of parts and reasonable structure, there will be no car. Any change, in the assembled parts which cause the car to exist, will change the car (for example, the type of car, the size of car, functions in the car etc.). So the car is dependent on other things to exist and it is empty of one permanent existence. A beginning, capability to change and an end; these three features refer to the impermanence of a thing. The car is impermanent because it has a beginning and it has an end. In between the start and the end it can be changed. A car is brought into existence with the assembly of parts and as time is passing or the car gets used, it is heading towards its end. It is deteriorating in value and efficiency. Another element of emptiness can be understood by the argument that when I say “I wrote this essay” I contradict my own statement. To write we need pen and paper (something to use the pen on i.e. hard surface. This is a general perception) and to write the essay I did not use pen at all but I still say I have written this essay. This is an example of how in our daily life we keep on using the same words for different things or actions. As the time is passing, things and actions are getting changed. People who never encountered a computer will have completely different experience of writing the essay. This change is also happening constantly at the micro level. For example, scientific research has found out that our body changes every 7 years. Among multiple changes, one change is that skin cells are replaced by new skin cells. That means if I touched your skin then after 7 years it will not be the same skin that I would have touched 7 years ago. This change process that completes over the span of 7 years is essentially happening every moment. The change of 7 years is succession of change that takes place every second (millisecond or the smallest measure of time). This highlights the impermanence. Things are changing every moment. Future is becoming the present and present is becoming the past. Fourth characteristic is identity. A thing is an object of the skandas. The Five Aggregates are: material form, or the physical world, feeling or sensations, perception, mental formations, and, consciousness. Using these skandas a thing can be identified.