[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[Xmca-l] Re: Identity through "experiential texts": Poems and Worksof Art??

"..like the movie characters of a movie are dependent on the movie screen."
I really like that analogy. Yet it also suggests that our self and its
infinite dependencies -- all that is here -- can still be regarded as a
fiction or illusion of sorts - I don't know whether that was your
intention, Annalisa. Thanks for the brief primer in Vedic thought, which I
knew nothing about.

Also on the subject of self and gender: how about excerpts from the novel
Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides? I'm thinking about the part where the main
character describes how he was always Apollonian, but must now contend with
the Dionysian emerging within him/her.

And what about Kafka? Either The Trial (for erasure/disappearance of
identity) or Metamorphasis (for sudden transformation of identity).

Rein was absolutely correct earlier about the inadequacy of mindfulness as
popularly understood for doing justice to Buddhist thought or its complex
notions of self.and no-self. It was very glib of me to lump those together.
I think what I was really trying to get at is that as an *experiential*
exercise, an appropriate guided mindfulness meditation practice might be a
very useful and accessible way of challenging some of the habitual frames
of mind David is hoping to shake up. There are certainly some good
exercises out there focused on decentering, unselfing, and so forth, that
may not necessarily have a lot of Buddhist cash value but could still be
relevant to his project.


On Fri, Jul 29, 2016 at 3:03 PM, Annalisa Aguilar <annalisa@unm.edu> wrote:

> Hi,
> I would like to recommend Virginia Woolf's A Room of One's Own. Or even,
> Orlando. If the connection of self and gender is something worth your
> examination.
> Not to deter discourse that derives from Buddhist practice, but in Vedic
> thought, self is considered all that is here. That there is no separation,
> and the world is an infinite appearance of dependencies, a concept that
> Buddhists have borrowed, if I am not mistaken.
> However, in Vedic thought, as I understand, the self is inclusive of
> everything, appearances, changing moments, etc. because everything here is
> you. It is a question of understanding the truth of that assertion, of
> clearing away the obstructions that allow you see that for yourself.
> So the infinite dependencies are not what "makes" the self, but the self
> includes these appearing infinite dependencies. Like the movie characters
> of the movie are dependent upon the movie screen.
> One problem that is also warranted in this discussion is the difference
> between mind and self. We usually make the mistake of that which changes to
> be the true self and then we are dismayed when the change occurs. This has
> an appearance of becoming. So we consider the equation to be mind = self
> and self = mind. But this isn't the case. It's just an appearance. That is
> why Buddhists can say there is no self. If one takes the mind to be the
> self, they are correct.
> Vedantins also say mind is not the self. However, we also say the self is
> the mind, and the sky, and the ocean, and my coffee and pastry, and this
> post, too. But that's probably more than you bargained for. :)
> Kind regards,
> Annalisa