Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Loss Of Ego

See Mass Minds.

"Any effort or attempt to break out of the Zen Hedonist thought system would be defeated by loss of ego, which formed the core of the doctrines."

I think that "ego" means a sense of separate selfhood? In this sense, I also think that ego has to be transcended because nothing is separate. Everything is interconnected and interdependent. This self, or individual subject of consciousness, is a transient manifestation and expression of the cosmic totality, like a wave of the sea.

However, ego is transcended by realizing interconnectedness, not by being caught in a thought system or a set of doctrines. Realization is approached by the practice of awareness, not by acceptance of the idea of "interconnectedness." I used to read, think and talk about Buddhism. Now I sit for meditation. No credit to me. I have been incredibly slow to start to understand what all the words have been pointing towards. Books on Zen are legs on a snake.

7 comments:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

I don't think it's enough to say that the "ego" which is "me" can be transcended by "interconnectedness." What is meant by that term? Is my ego transcended if I interpret interconnectedness to mean practicing the Golden Rule in its positive form, as given by Christ?

Sean

Paul Shackley said...

Sean,
Interconnectedness: every individual subject and object exists only in relation to the totality of existence. The Golden Rule is an excellent recognition of our inter-relatedness.
Paul.

Sean M. Brooks said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

I deleted my previous comment because of an annoying error I made.

Therefore, to practice interconnectedness a la the Golden Rule would not mean the loss of our "ego," our "me-ness."

Sean

Paul Shackley said...

Sean,
Not a loss of individual self-consciousness. Loss of a sense of being separate.
Paul.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

It might be put better if "interconnectedness" led to the loss of a sense of alienation, the fear of existing in isolation.

Sean

Paul Shackley said...

Sean,
OK. There is no agreed terminology in these matters. Hence a lot of the communication problems.
Paul.