Speculative Non-Buddhism

an experiment in aporetic inquiry

Posts Tagged ‘Jayarava’

Thomas Metzinger and Jayarava on Being No One

Posted by Glenn Wallis on May 4, 2011

Being No One: Consciousness, The Phenomenal Self, and First-Person Perspective – UCTV – University of California Television.

Do neuroscientific models of the person supplant classical Buddhist ones? Are the Buddhist models merely unsophisticated proto-scientific theories? If so, are there any compelling reasons to advocate for, much less adhere to, those models? If not, what are they? And what commends Buddhist views of the person in light of theories such as Metzinger’s?

Click on the title above to see the German neurophilosopher Thomas Metzinger lecturing on his idea of self models.

Below is Jayarava’s insightful examination of Metzinger’s talk along with some reference to classical Buddhist teachings on the I-me-mine first person perspective. You visit his site, as well, to follow the discussion there.

First Person Perspective

I’ve already blogged about Thomas Metzinger a couple of times. In this post I want to write about another of his ideas. His book The Ego Tunnel: The Science of the Mind and the Myth of the Self opens with the words “In this book, I will try to convince you that there is no such thing as a self” and as Buddhists we may immediately feel that this is familiar ground. However Metzinger is not a Buddhist, and sums up the Buddha as a pessimist who posited, “essentially, that life is not worth living”. (Ego Tunnel, p.199) Of course I disagree with this summation – the Buddha wasn’t a pessimist, and did not say this, although he did place limits on what kind of life is worth living.

In this post I want to look not at Metzinger’s book, but at a talk he gave in 2005 as part of the Foerster Lectures on the Immortality of the Soul entitled “Being No One” which explores the idea of a first person perspective. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Comparativists, Constructivists | Tagged: , , , , | 7 Comments »


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 36 other followers