The Ego

An open and inclusive investigation into Buddhism and spiritual cultivation
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Śūnyatā
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The Ego

Postby Śūnyatā » Tue Jan 22, 2013 1:21 pm

In your own words, how would you define "the ego" (sakkaya-ditthi)?

Gratefully yours,
Śūnyatā
Live in joy, In love, Even among those who hate. Live in joy, In health, Even among the afflicted. Live in joy, In peace, Even among the troubled. Look within. Be still. — Dhammapada

Being a human being is not an end in itself. It’s only a transition. It can never be a perfect state in itself. It’s merely a convention. — Luang Por Sumedho

Question everything. Learn something. Answer nothing. — Euripides

gendun
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Re: The Ego

Postby gendun » Tue Jan 22, 2013 1:49 pm

A couple of points..it may not be useful to translate sakkya-ditthi as "ego".
There is a risk of confusion with western psychoanalytic models.
Secondly it might be useful to think of sakkya-ditthi not as a noun , not as a thing, but as a verb..an action.
Specifically as an act of identification with the kandhas/skandhas.
Gendun P. Brownlow.
Karma Kagyu student.

rachmiel
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Re: The Ego

Postby rachmiel » Tue Jan 22, 2013 2:04 pm

Ego: The web of interactive mind-based reflexes acquired from pre-lifetime (nature) and lifetime (nurture) experiences that, together, generate a sense of individual persistent identity.

Or: A bit of undigested beef.

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m0rl0ck
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Re: The Ego

Postby m0rl0ck » Tue Jan 22, 2013 3:13 pm

I would define it as an imaginary construct invented by western psychology. Freud, for gods sake, seriously?
"When you meditate, don't send your mind outside. Don't fasten onto any knowledge at all. Whatever knowledge you've gained from books or teachers, don't bring it in to complicate things. Cut away all preoccupations, and then as you meditate let all your knowledge come from what's going on in the mind. When the mind is quiet, you'll know it for yourself. But you have to keep meditating a lot. When the time comes for things to develop, they'll develop on their own. Whatever you know, have it come from your own mind.
http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/thai ... eleft.html

rachmiel
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Re: The Ego

Postby rachmiel » Tue Jan 22, 2013 4:19 pm

> I would define it as an imaginary construct invented by western psychology.

An imaginary construct with a (faux) life of its own!

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Cittasanto
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Re: The Ego

Postby Cittasanto » Tue Jan 22, 2013 5:41 pm

Śūnyatā wrote:In your own words, how would you define "the ego" (sakkaya-ditthi)?

Gratefully yours,
Śūnyatā

A combination of parts mistaken for something they are not.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."

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Śūnyatā
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Re: The Ego

Postby Śūnyatā » Wed Jan 23, 2013 12:34 am

rachmiel wrote:Or: A bit of undigested beef.

I love this analogy! Is this why self-view can give you a bad case of heartburn? :)
Live in joy, In love, Even among those who hate. Live in joy, In health, Even among the afflicted. Live in joy, In peace, Even among the troubled. Look within. Be still. — Dhammapada

Being a human being is not an end in itself. It’s only a transition. It can never be a perfect state in itself. It’s merely a convention. — Luang Por Sumedho

Question everything. Learn something. Answer nothing. — Euripides

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Jason
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Re: The Ego

Postby Jason » Wed Jan 23, 2013 2:17 am

I tend to view our ego or sense of self as the product of a mental process that arises due to the presence of clinging (upadana) in the mind with regard to the five aggregates, a process that acts as a condition for the birth (jati) of the conceit 'I am,' the self-identification that designates a being (satta).
"Sabbe dhamma nalam abhinivesaya" (AN 7.58).

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