Before having realized emptiness, it is not possible to truly free mind of concepts. Then, we can just adopt an “imitative” approach to all actions, which is relatively close to but not quite the real thing. For example, after we have learned the analytical techniques of Madhyamaka, we can fully appreciate the idea that phenomena manifest and, at the same time, are devoid of intrinsic reality, like dreams. However, this is just theoretical understanding, not true realization of emptiness. Let us still use the example of liberating animals. At the time of liberating animals, or at least at the time of dedicating merit after completion of the activity, we can employ the Madhyamaka theory to discern the illusory nature of the doer, the object and the action, thereby imitate the real freedom of concepts for the mind. Though this is not true realization, it is already quite close to it and can be used to train the mindset at the initial stage.
~ Depicted from THE RIGHT VIEW - The Three Supreme Methods—the ultimate methods of cultivating virtue and training the mind