Is this an ok definition of anatta?

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Is this an ok definition of anatta?

Postby salty-J » Mon Jul 26, 2010 12:12 am

the Buddhist teaching of “anatta”, or non-self, which teaches there exists no separate self that truly “is” a thing as we perceive it, but that everything and everyone is a combination of various components, the way they are because of causes and conditions, that give the illusion of having a separate “self”.
I am writing a paper for art 1 at school and am making the argument that the pointillism technique of Georges Seurat illustrates the doctrine of anatta, and wanted to try and get some feedback from some of you who are qualified to judge my definition above.
:thinking:
"It is what it is." -foreman infamous for throwing wrenches in fits of rage
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Re: Is this an ok definition of anatta?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Jul 26, 2010 12:49 am

Greetings,

That looks OK. A minor point might be to focus, as the Buddha does, on 'experience' and not whether something 'exists' or 'does not exist'. The five aggregates are the sum of experience, and all aspects of experience are not-self, impermanent, and unsatisfactory. The Middle Way of the Buddha transcends notions of 'existence' and 'non-existence' (see SN 12.15 for details).

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


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Re: Is this an ok definition of anatta?

Postby OcTavO » Mon Jul 26, 2010 12:55 am

That's an interesting analogy to pointillism. I like it. :thumbsup:

You may find this link of interest also, in case you haven't already seen it before: http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/thanissaro/notself2.html
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Re: Is this an ok definition of anatta?

Postby mikenz66 » Mon Jul 26, 2010 1:21 am

Hi Salty,

If you have time you might have a listen to some of Steve Armstrong's talks here:
http://www.dharmaseed.org/teacher/170/
The talk: "Not Who I Am" - Anatta Characteristic
I believe should contain a simile that he often uses that is rather similar to yours, but using a woven picture, rather than a piontillist picture. It may give you some inspiration...

If it's not that it would be one of the older talks involving anatta...

Mike
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Re: Is this an ok definition of anatta?

Postby salty-J » Mon Jul 26, 2010 1:26 am

thank you, gentlemen! I did go with "not-self" as opposed to no-self, like the link talks about, but I see the point about existing and what does or does not! Thank you so much! :namaste:
I changed it like this:
the Buddhist teaching of anatta, or “not-self”, which says there can not be found any separate self that truly “is” a thing as we perceive it, but that everything and everyone is a combination of various components, the way they are due to causes and conditions, which form the illusion of a separate “self”.
"It is what it is." -foreman infamous for throwing wrenches in fits of rage
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Re: Is this an ok definition of anatta?

Postby David N. Snyder » Mon Jul 26, 2010 1:38 am

salty-J wrote: I am writing a paper for art 1 at school and am making the argument that the pointillism technique of Georges Seurat illustrates the doctrine of anatta,


I like it, it sounds like an analogy for the chariot story, originally from the bhikkhuni Vajjira and then later in detail by Nagasena. See:

http://www.dhammawiki.com/index.php?title=Anatta
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