Author Topic: Buddhism / non self  (Read 256 times)

lexandrius

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Buddhism / non self
« on: October 31, 2018, 03:40:22 PM »

Hi Yet another burning question I had,

Buddhism is all about letting go of the ego, reflecting on the (non)self.
I was giving this some thought (maybe i should stop thinking ;) )

If one practices any sport (running, weightlifting, yoga, swimming,...). Would this not boost the ego/self image?
Doing yoga for example, would train the self to become better/leaner and more flexible.
Doing weightlifting or swimming, would create a bulkier "posture"
Doing running, would be an endeavor to boost the health.

All these practices are part to train the self and ego in some way, so is this time not wiser spend training the mind?
They may even be counterproductive?

Any insights are appreciated,

Meta,

L.

VipassanaXYZ

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Re: Buddhism / non self
« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2018, 05:36:30 AM »
Keep meditating (you have the tools - breath and sensations), the answer should come for within

For now:
If one practices any sport (running, weightlifting, yoga, swimming,...). Would this not boost the ego/self image?

Does not practicing this bring non-self?

Doing yoga for example, would train the self to become better/leaner and more flexible.
Does not practicing this bring non-self?

Doing weightlifting or swimming, would create a bulkier "posture"
Does not practicing this bring non-self?


Then, how do you 'know' non-self while going about daily life, while excelling in daily life and not have ego come in your way?

chin

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Re: Buddhism / non self
« Reply #2 on: November 02, 2018, 08:24:01 AM »
I used to not lead a very active lifestyle, but a couple of years ago my therapist advised me to start running, which I started enjoying. Later I switched to swimming regularly instead.

Contrary to what you are hypothesizing, I found that the grip that the ego has on me actually loosens after a good workout. I feel less preoccupied by my the usual obsessions and gain clearer perspective. This is of course in conjunction with my Vipassana practice which allows me to use my workouts as another form of mindfulness practice (just like walking meditation).


Laurent

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Re: Buddhism / non self
« Reply #3 on: November 02, 2018, 10:44:49 AM »
You may also practice mindfulness while running or swimming (or anything else ) :)
« Last Edit: November 02, 2018, 10:48:27 AM by Laurent »

Goofaholix

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Re: Buddhism / non self
« Reply #4 on: November 02, 2018, 06:35:42 PM »
If one practices any sport (running, weightlifting, yoga, swimming,...). Would this not boost the ego/self image?
Doing yoga for example, would train the self to become better/leaner and more flexible.
Doing weightlifting or swimming, would create a bulkier "posture"
Doing running, would be an endeavor to boost the health.

All of your examples are training the body, not "the" self.  I think most people would identify with self view more strongly with personality, memory, thoughts, and emotion.

Either way whatever you identify with the practice is to learn to view it more objectively, to let go of identification with it.  That doesn't mean you can't develop or look after it, or do the things you enjoy.

Nicky

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Re: Buddhism / non self
« Reply #5 on: November 03, 2018, 09:41:13 AM »
Would this not boost the ego/self image?

Exercise, similar to eating, can be done for the health of the body (although I would not recommend yoga or weightlifting, which can seriously damage the body and thus the proper flow of breathing in meditation). Unrelated to "self". The body is not a self.

lexandrius

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Re: Buddhism / non self
« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2018, 10:16:56 AM »
First of all thank you for your input.
I think I found the answer by individually reading and answering to the input you gave me.


Doing yoga for example, would train the self to become better/leaner and more flexible.
Does not practicing this bring non-self?

Doing weightlifting or swimming, would create a bulkier "posture"
Does not practicing this bring non-self?

Then, how do you 'know' non-self while going about daily life, while excelling in daily life and not have ego come in your way?

Example:
I can barely touch my toes bending forward, training the first week "Agh cannot reach it (frustration)",
the week after "I can almost reach it, need more training (progress)",
the week after... "finally I can reach the ground, now I'm happy, lets move on to the next challenge"

And so the ego and the non self get stronger, as we would create a certain image of now being very lean and flexible.
In daily life, the ego and non-self are trained from different aspects like, "stuck in traffic again, why am I always stuck"; "Why can I not solve this or that problem"; "What will He/she think of me"; "Finally I won this case",...



Contrary to what you are hypothesizing, I found that the grip that the ego has on me actually loosens after a good workout. I feel less preoccupied by my the usual obsessions and gain clearer perspective.

I do tend to agree, after running, my head feels more clear, because to me running is not a challenge, but rather a tool, maybe even a craving (I enjoy it too much from time to time).
I can see the contrast to the previous answer I gave to VipasanaXYZ. Where as long as you don't make it a challenge, it helps to dissolve the ego/nonself
When coupling it with "I need to run 20k in this amount of time, or see progress such and such", the ego would kick in. I do see the fine line.

From what I understand Goofaholix, Laurent and Nicky seem to gravitate towards the same point.

Laurent

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Re: Buddhism / non self
« Reply #7 on: November 08, 2018, 10:48:28 AM »
I think you are entirely right when you say that daily life tends to develop ego. However, if you practice seriously, it decreases the importance of ego in experiences. You also "see" more clearly some reactions of ego, at some moments.
So, practicing in a modern daily life is still beneficial, while it is true that it is a lot more difficult to reach full liberation.