Buddha once explained existence as a chain of dependent emergence:
Some recluses & priests declare these
excessively speculative views:
which is the one extreme (Sarvastavadin Eternalism).
Other recluses & priests declare a just as hypothetical opposite
view: 'Everything does
Not Exist' (Sunyatavadin Annihilationism).
Avoiding both these extremes the Well-Gone-Beyond Buddha teaches
this Dhamma from the Middle:
this is present,
is absent, that
From ignorance arises mental
From mental construction arises consciousness.
From consciousness arises naming-&-forming.
From name-&-form arises the six senses.
From the six senses arises contact.
From contact arises feeling.
From feeling arises craving.
From craving arises clinging.
From clinging arises becoming.
From becoming arises birth.
From birth arises ageing, decay, sickness & death.
From ageing, decay & death arises
This is the origin of this entire mass of
When ignorance ceases, mental construction stops.
When mental construction ceases, consciousness stops.
When consciousness ceases, naming-&-forming stops.
When name-&-form ceases, the six senses stops.
When the six senses ceases, contact stops.
When contact ceases, feeling stops.
When feeling ceases, craving stops.
When craving ceases, clinging stops.
When clinging ceases, becoming stops.
When becoming ceases, birth stops.
When birth ceases, ageing, decay, & death stops...
When ageing, decay & death ceases,
This is the Disappearance of this entire mass of
This - only this supremely stilled silence - is
Everything has a Cause:
Co-Dependent Co-Arising (paticca-samuppāda):
More on Buddhist Ontology: What exists & how does it exist?
Existence is thus:
Neither a static substance out there, nor a mental illusion in here,
But a chain of dependent states arising and ceasing momentarily...
Everything has a Cause!
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