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The boys in the basement, the empty room, and the plagiarist

personperson Don't believe everything you thinkthe liminal space Veteran
edited March 2016 in Philosophy

@littlestudent linked this article in another thread and I thought it would make for a good thread of its own. its a longish article but worth the read.

The author and teacher Bodhipaksa makes an analogy about no self which incorporates a modern understanding of brain functions.

My take is that in general it does a really good job of explaining no self from its point of view but other aspects that are tangential, like free will and the nature of consciousness, he only glosses over and, I think, kind of misses the mark.

Edit: What misses the mark on the nature of consciousness is that he equates it to a place in the brain similar to other sections that process our senses, emotions, thoughts, etc (the boys in the basement). But there is no place in the brain (the empty room) where the processes go to in order to enter our consciousness, nor is there a "room" where the sense of "I" resides (the plagiarist). Then on free will, this is more a matter of opinion rather than science, but my view is that he is correct on decisions being made in unconscious brain processes before we become aware of them but that when some of these enter into awareness they act in a feedback loop sort of way that informs subsequent decisions. So the goings on of consciousness aren't the way we experience them but neither are they irrelevant.



  • When meditating initially, we soon realise the mind is full ... of junk being ... some positive, some negative, some karma.

    That is who we are. A process.

    We then in general meditation terms begin a dualistic practice of awareness, focus and calming.

    We can during this find that all the 'boys in the basement', brickwork and loft are empty of 'I' ness or if you prefer they are the dependent arising of ego. We are the empty room ...

    Now what?

  • personperson Don't believe everything you think the liminal space Veteran

    A comment! I now feel like my social internet status has been validated and am fulfilled, now to check my twitter feed.

  • Just remember in dharma you can not be unfriended ...

    This group, who I have mentioned before, allow us to find the empty room

  • personperson Don't believe everything you think the liminal space Veteran
    edited March 2016

    Upon deeper reflection I could have written that joke a little better. I should have ended it by saying I don't have time to comment on your post right now my twitter is blowing up.

  • DairyLamaDairyLama Veteran Veteran
    edited March 2016

    @lobster said: This group, who I have mentioned before, allow us to find the empty room>

    Did you get anything from it though? It all looks rather intellectual.

  • lobsterlobster Veteran
    edited March 2016

    ^^^ Tee Hee.

    I (not that I exist mind you) iz nothing but trouble. :3

    I read through my interactions again. I found the process may have benefits and my interaction certainly appears intellectual. Normally the forum is used for the rather minor realisation of seing there is no 'I'. Been there done that, already have the t-shirt. When used to find the empty nature of 'I' it is useful and the guides are able to facilitate this process for those who still believe they exist in some independent way ...

  • Empty room, full room, eh!
    Just grab an Ukulele and go for happy.

    Good night and good hunting, all.

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