The origin of the sensation of self and its dissolution?

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The origin of the sensation of self and its dissolution?

Postby Individual » Sun Sep 19, 2010 11:05 pm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychology_of_self
Both episodic and semantic memory systems have been proposed to generate a sense of self identity. In this personal episodic memory enables the phenomenological continuity of identity, while personal semantic memory generates the narrative continuity of identity.[10] "The nature of personal narratives depends on highly conceptual and ‘story-like’ information about one’s life, which resides at the general event level of autobiographical memory and is thus unlikely to rely on more event-specific episodic systems."

So, what we see as an experiential self is the brain's process of accessing and storing sensory data, while what we see as the intellectual self is semantic; how that sensory data is categorized.

In simple terms, the self is "felt" or "observed" because of two things:
-The stream of conscious states, which bears continuity
-The fact that I'm always told I am this or that, and this and other "selves" need acknowledgment in order for any of us to be able to speak sincerely and coherently to one another.

Is this about the same as the classical Buddhist view? If not, in what way is it different?

And lastly, a hypothetical question: Is it possible for the linguistic self and the phenomenological self to conflict with one another and if so, how? In other words, what if I meditate and observe that I can't find a self anywhere, but the language my thought-processes are bound by refuse to allow me to think otherwise? Or what if I refuse to use pronouns in either thought or speech, habitually removing myself from the common practice of speaking and thinking in terms of self, yet I still have the experience of personal continuity and feelings of desire still arise from it?
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Re: The origin of the sensation of self and its dissolution?

Postby Ben » Sun Sep 19, 2010 11:15 pm

Hi individual and welcome back to DW!
Its been a long time!

If you are interested in this subject, I recommend Thomas Metzinger's book, 'the ego tunnel: the science of mind and the myth of the self'. Metzinger is a neuroscientist and philosopher and he contends that the self is just a computational aide to assist in the processing of varied and simultaneous information streams coming from our senses. It makes for interesting reading.
kind regards

Ben
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Re: The origin of the sensation of self and its dissolution?

Postby Individual » Sun Sep 19, 2010 11:24 pm

Ben wrote:Hi individual and welcome back to DW!
Its been a long time!

If you are interested in this subject, I recommend Thomas Metzinger's book, 'the ego tunnel: the science of mind and the myth of the self'. Metzinger is a neuroscientist and philosopher and he contends that the self is just a computational aide to assist in the processing of varied and simultaneous information streams coming from our senses.

If it is a computational aide, what types of computations and information processing does Metzinger contend are possible (or more efficient) with a self-concept but impossible (or less efficient) otherwise?
The best things in life aren't things.

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Re: The origin of the sensation of self and its dissolution?

Postby Ben » Sun Sep 19, 2010 11:47 pm

I don't have the book with me, presently, Individual.
"One cannot step twice into the same river, nor can one grasp any mortal substance in a stable condition, but it scatters and again gathers; it forms and dissolves, and approaches and departs."

- Hereclitus


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Re: The origin of the sensation of self and its dissolution?

Postby Shonin » Mon Sep 20, 2010 6:11 am

I recommend reading Derek Parfit, Reasons and Persons, where through a serious of thought experiements he concludes that personal identity is established on psychological continuity - primarily short and long-term memory.
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Re: The origin of the sensation of self and its dissolution?

Postby unspoken » Mon Sep 20, 2010 3:58 pm

It seems funny but I got a hard time understanding what you trying to ask due to my average-English level of understanding

If you asking if you meditate and found that you did not pull yourself out from the concept of "self" which will generate anger, delusion and greed. And you continuously have rising feelings or thoughts ? All of these happened because the thoughts and concept of "self" pop up constantly and is stopping you from any progress ???

If this was what you were asking, my answer toward it is: The concept of "self" does not meant to not identify each and other. As the self identify is strong it will lead to ideas and thoughts of it is mine or it's not me etc. The identification of linguistic and phenomenological will not crash each other or having conflicts.

[explanation(cause)]--> As we were trying hard to describe a phenomena, we made language to aid us. As language is not flexible, even the Pali Canon language itself is not flexible enough, most of the people take it literally. Which means everyone see words by words which does not examine the true meaning from a "sentence". And took the meaning wrong.

Thats why every time where we start meditation we will throw away thoughts and whole bunch of logical concepts to receive the lessons from meditation itself.Its something without language as human were here without languages. Mental noting it and let it go will soon appears in you that language or thoughts is not important as it just only manifested by us.

You don't stop identify yourself, just let it go. As you let it go, everything seems clear to you

If this is not your question, then I hope you can have a better question from others. Wish you could find your answer

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