volume 14, no. 21july 2014
Insight Knowledge of No Self in Buddhism: An Epistemic Analysis
https://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/p/pod/do ... format=pdfI aim to show that philosophical inquiry into gaining insight knowledge of no-self, as described in early Buddhist teaching, is of genuine relevance to the contemporary fields of knowledge, mind and cognition. It is hoped that this exercise will also make more concrete the overall context of inquiry, such as how it sits with current empirical research, as well as elucidate the differ-ence between the central notions of self and sense of self as they stand in relation to the non-existence of self ...
Now, those who deny the existence of such a self do not usually deny that the sense of self is real, any more than denying that the two lines in a Muller-Lyer Illusion are of uneven length involves denying the appearance of such lines. What is held to lack reality — at least in its entirety — is rather the very thing that we have a reflexive sense of being: a self, with all the enlisted features, that is wholly anteced-ent to and unconstructed by the thoughts and experiences that it ap-pears to own or generate. The idea is that instead of being anchored in a thought-antecedent self, as they subjectively appear to be, at least some features of the thing that we reflexively and unwittingly take ourselves to be (via the sense of self) — such features as boundedness,persistence, agency, unity, axiological salience — turn out to be wholly or partially generated by the very thoughts and experiences that the self seems to own or generate. Put simply, the self (with those features) does not, as it purports to, think the thoughts; instead, the thoughts think (those features of) the self. The mismatch between appearance and reality is what makes the self an illusion. ...
I have to admit that I haven't read it all yet.