In this episode I share a lesson I gave on the Meditation and Mindfulness Discord Server (https://discord.gg/Fpz9Wu) on the topic of Not-Self (Pali – Anatta, Sanskrit – Anatman).
It’s quite usual to hear Buddhist teachers speak of “No Self”, but as I describe in detail, this is nothing but teaching nihilism disguised as Buddhism. Nowhere did the Buddha say that there is no self. He simply stated very clearly that what we usually take to be the self, our “egoic” self, is nowhere to be found, and is unfit to be considered a self.
We also look at the Surangama Sutra, where the topic of what an actual Self might be comes up:
The Buddha said, “Great king, your face is in wrinkles, but the essential nature of your seeing has not yet wrinkled. What wrinkles is subject to change. What does not wrinkle does not change. What changes will become extinct, but what does not change is fundamentally free of production and extinction. How can it be subject to your birth and death?”
Mostly, it’s an episode about explaining why one cannot see one’s head, or bite one’s teeth. Why the wordless cannot be put in words. Confused? Then listen:
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