The existence of the two truths/realities is vital to your understanding.
At the ultimate level there is no attacker, victim, weapon, feeling, reaction, they are just labels or conceptions.
At the relative level there is an attacker, victim, weapon, feeling, reaction, they do exist.
The truth though, lies somewhere in between these two.
Yes. That is exactly my problem.
Being able to function, ie to be caused and to have an effect is a direct consequence of not having a nature. If something wasn't empty, it would be frozen and could neither be created, changed or destroyed.
Imgine an A4 piece of white paper that is by nature a blank A4 white piece of paper. You could not tear it, as to do so would mean it was no longer A4 size - which by nature it must be. You could not write on it, as it is blank and white by nature. You could not burn it, as it would become ashes - but by nature it must remain paper.
So you can see that if something had a nature it would be unable to function. Since appearances are dependant on the cause and effect of other appearances and not a nature, they can arise, change and cease. Emptiness is a mandatory requirement for a universe that can change and function.
Beautiful. I'm saving this.
When you stub your toe or break a tooth, it is very convincing. MY FACE IT HURTS. It feels real in a conventional way, even though that reality doesn't hold up to analytical scrutiny. Does the experience of a toothache really correspond to the concept of "toothache"? The tooth itself? is it really "your" tooth? &c. Emptiness is another way to say "dependent origination."
My point: you might say there are two levels of truth-claims to be made about an ordinary phenomenon such as a toothache. (ahem) That there might be something of value in the idea of the two truths when discussing emptiness. yes?
Right. Like what Greg posted about the Two Truths Doctrine. But then where is the middle line between Emptiness and Dependent Origination?
This is a good translation of Nagarjuna's 'Commentary On The Awakening Mind' translated by Thupten Jinpa that may be of some relevance.http://www.tibetanclassics.org/html-assets/Awakening%20Mind%20Commentary.pdf
Also Nagarjuna's 'Sixty Stanzas of Reasoning' translated by Thupten Jinpa as well.http://www.tibetanclassics.org/html-assets/SixtyStanzas.pdf