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Non-Self (무아)

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Writer Jogye Date17 Aug 2015 Read2,299 Comment0

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Non-Self [All Things Lack Inherent Identity]
무아 

 

“Non-self” means “that which is not the self,” or “that which does not have a self.” It can also mean that “things do not have an inherent substantial self.” The theory of non-self negates all thoughts of "me, my, or mine." To think that something is “mine” or belongs to “me” is a deluded attachment to the self. Practitioners must extinguish these kinds of deluded attachments above all else. To regard something as “one’s own” is a wrong perception. In fact, there is nothing that can be regarded as one’s own. Therefore, the exposition “All things lack inherent identity” means that all things in the world have arisen dependent upon causes and conditions and that there is no true substance of self which does not change. 


“Form, feeling, perception, mental formations and consciousness are all impermanent. And what is impermanent is suffering. What is suffering is non-self. What is non-self is to see things as they are with correct wisdom by realizing, 'This is not mine, this is not me, and this is not my self.'"

-Majjhima Nikàya

- excerpt from Buddhist English (Elementary 2) published in 2014 by the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism
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