western vs eastern concept of self
Rogers, C. (1951). Thoughts without a thinker: Psychotherapy from a Buddhist perspective. These differences can be noted mainly in people’s behavior and attitudes. Buddhist training consists largely of short-circuiting the reification process, by using non-verbal, non labeling experiential practice (such as meditation) to become “awakened” to the “as-it-is-ness” of inexpressible reality. Although the archetypes in the Jungian collective unconscious manifest themselves in dreams and visions, the individual cannot modify their character. The five skandhas, like everything else, are dependently arisen, and cannot exist by themselves. The integration of the two levels of awareness, the absolute and the relative, is essential for the normal functioning of the healthy human being in society. In Eastern philosophy, though, the self is often treated as an illusion. My parents certainly never knew what they were or they might have been better parents and I might have lived a lot better life than I did. There is experience, but there is no subject (no, The eight consciousnesses should not be conceived as separate, but rather as eight manifestations or functions of an ongoing process. Zen keys. In J. Strachey (Ed. In this example, the electricity that activates them is the equivalent of the alayavijnana. The eight consciousnesses should not be conceived as separate, but rather as eight manifestations or functions of an ongoing process. Various self-evident truths about the individual, his rights and dignity, basic needs and aspirations, as well as about the nature of human communities, taken from Western civilization, are usually only creations of our team culture, formed on the basis of the Christian heritage and Greco-Roman. The delusion of the separate self is likely to be stronger in individuals raised in individualistic societies, such as those of Europe and America, and may be weaker in collectivistic societies, such as those of China or Japan, where the harmony (wah) of the group takes precedence over the needs of the individual. This is why mindfulness of thoughts is so important, and why the “right effort” aspect of the Eightfold Path deals with cutting off negative or destructive thoughts as soon as they appear, while nurturing positive ones. Eastern perspectives about self are inherently non-dualistic. Through analyzing the By extension, it is making a thing out of a form, a shape, a configuration, a Gestalt, a perception, or an image. Philosophy East and West, 43, 481-510. Clearly any such concerns would vanish instantly upon realizing the water-nature of the ocean, and its oneness with it. While understanding universal interconnectedness and absolute reality, the emptiness or nothingness of Buddhism, the person needs at the same time to experience reality in the relative sense, where individual identities exist. The Eastern philosophy is drawn much more into groups or society or people’s actions and thoughts as one in order to find meaning in life as they try to get rid of the false “me” concept and find meaning in discovering the true “me” in relation to everything around them, or as part of a bigger scheme. But for the logger to be, his parents had to be, and the food they consumed, and all the conditions that made their lives possible, and those lives upon which theirs in turn depended, and on, and on. 2 Introduction The world of business, the world over, is waking up to a new direction for the … It is essentially a perceptual and cognitive processing center. Wisdom and compassion: What the Buddha taught. Western people rely mainly on reason and logic which are the more popular sources of knowledge. Next comes manas (“mind”), where complex thinking and awareness takes place based on the information processed at the previous level. Culture differences are a very hot topic in business as well as at holiday parties. This is the Buddha’s concept of anatta, and this is why the Buddha declared the self an illusion. Concepts of the Self: Western and Eastern Perspectives. Therefore, the self-concept is the idea of who I am, kind of like a self-reflection of one's well-being. Does it have any real existence apart from its parts? The same is true of the remaining skandhas—each one is composed of the other four. This paper will compare and contrast these differing views emerging from Western and Eastern psychology, and examine their relevance for psychotherapy and everyday life. Kornfield, J. New York: Harcourt, Brace & World. He was a founder of the school known as the Vijnanavada (“path of knowledge”) or Yogacara (“application of yoga”), and the author of one of the most important books of Buddhist psychology, the Abhidharmakosa. To some extent Western formulations of the self evidence a homunculus-like quality lacking in some Eastern conceptions, especially those derived from the Vijnanavada and Zen Buddhist traditions. This means that nothing is ever truly independent or separate from everything else. These “seeds,” upon development, produce all sorts of mental phenomena. process. E-mail: email@example.com, http://www.chinabuddhismencyclopedia.com/en/index.php?title=Conceptions_of_the_Self_in_Western_and_Eastern_Psychology&oldid=147072. This same piece of paper, is also because there was rain and sunshine, for without them the tree could not have grown. Indra’s postmodern net. The concept of the self in Western psychology derives primarily from the work of Freud, Jung, and Rogers. New York: Holt, Rinehart, & Winston. The concept of the self in Western psychology derives primarily from the work of Freud, Jung, and Rogers. William James explicitly talked of the social self. Eastern psychotherapy attempts to dissolve the experience of the self-as-separate entity and replace it with a feeling of interconnectedness, the non-self or selfless Self implied in the Buddhist concept of, Nevertheless, it is not enough for the healthy, liberated individual to eliminate the delusion of the separate self. If the component conditions are regarded as elements, we can say that this piece of paper is composed of non-paper elements, or, in other words, that conditions other than the paper itself are necessary for the paper to exist. Vijnana, or “consciousness,” the last of the five skandhas, is a multi-layered concept, including both conscious and unconscious aspects. The theological dimensions of the concept of soul were elaborated by Augustine of Hippo as well as by Thomas Aquinas, from where it passed into the hands of Rene Descartes, and from there, almost unchanged, but referred to as “mind,” into the realm of 19th and 20th century psychology. They are essentially patterns, configurations, or Gestalten rather than objectively existing separate entities. At the end of this lesson, you should be able to: 1. Or is it? Eastern Self/Western Self By Linda Heuman May 08, 2013 . Because of the delusory nature of any labeling process, with its consequent reifications, any attempt to offer a name for the unnamable Reality must always fall short, although sages have offered terms such as Thusness, According to Walpola Rahula (1974), “Buddhism stands unique in the history of human thought in denying the existence of a [separate] soul, self, or, It is important to realize what is meant by the “self” rejected by the Buddha as illusory. The delusion of separateness results in cravings, grasping, clinging, greed, selfishness, hatred, fear, feelings of alienation, loneliness, helplessness, and anxiety, which afflict those “healthy” as well as “unhealthy.”. Western and Eastern medicines identify and treat different “bodies.” Which one needs the treatment? It is essentially a perceptual and cognitive processing center. Is it real? The illumination is one ongoing phenomenon, integrating the contributions of the individual bulbs. If the component conditions are regarded as elements, we can say that this piece of paper is composed of non-paper elements, or, in other words, that conditions other than the paper itself are necessary for the paper to exist. While understanding universal interconnectedness and absolute reality, the emptiness or, The different conceptions of the self in Western and Eastern psychology have clear implications for psychotherapy and everyday life. This develops positive mental habits rooted in the seeds of the alayavijnana, and has far-reaching effects on the life and well-being of the individual. Western perspectives about self are inherently dualistic. Main Difference – Eastern vs Western Culture. New York: Bantam. (1989). The concept of the self in Western psychology derives primarily from the work of Freud, Jung, and Rogers. On the contrary, it empowers the individual by erasing the boundaries of separateness that limit the personal ego or self. It does not acknowledge energy fields as clinically significant for diagnosis or treatment. To some extent Western formulations of the self evidence a homunculus-like quality lacking in some Eastern conceptions, especially those derived from the Vijnanavada and Zen Buddhist traditions. Philosophy East and West, 43, 481-510. But the concept of anatta does not negate the person, nor does it diminish it. Another crucial area of comparison for eastern and western philosophy is innate morality. New York: Bantam. He did so by distinguishing between the ego as center of consciousness and the self as the emergent integration of the polarities of the personality. 141-207). These differences can be noted mainly in people’s behavior and attitudes. Allport, G. (1961). Sigmund Freud (1940) offered a complex model of this inner self in his tripartite analysis of the human personality into id, ego, and superego, which became a distinguishing feature of his psychoanalytic theory. Each of these jewels reflects the whole net, so that the entire universe is contained in each part of it (Loy, 1993). & Breiter P. (1985). Vasubandhu understood that every single object differentiated by the mind out of its global and holistic experience is created by this process, including the concept of the individual self, the “I” or “me.” Reifications are little more than delusions, and refer to momentary states remembered from the past experience of the person (whose concept of himself or herself as a separate individual is itself a reification). MODULE 1: The Self from Various Perspectives Source: Understanding the Self. Yozan Dirk Mosig Debunk interning in eastern cultures vs. western cultures with GoAbroad. Sigmund Freud (1940) offered a complex model of this inner self in his tripartite analysis of the human personality into id, ego, and superego, which became a distinguishing feature of his psychoanalytic theory. It is also true of cognitive or mental states, because for every emotion, for every perception, for every thought, there are necessary causal conditions without which they would not have come into being. In J. Strachey (Ed. A comparison of culture and philosophy between Eastern and Western societies. The heart of understanding. Eastern culture uses the spiritual and missionary approach of searching inside oneself for answers through meditation whereas western culture takes on a pragmatic and emotional approach in searching outside oneself through research and analysis. Eastern psychologies maintain that, as a result of social and self-conditioning, our ambitions, beliefs, desires, expectations, preconceptions, and views of the nature of reality are illusory. The east takes time and has patience. The Buddhist notion of self circumvents reification, being an impermanent gestalt formed by the interaction of five skandhas or aggregates (form, feelings, perceptions, impulses, consciousness). The Buddhist notions of the self are derived from the teachings of Siddhartha Gautama, better known as Shakyamuni Buddha, or simply Buddha (“the one who is awake”), after his experience of enlightenment under the bodhi tree over 2,500 years ago. Fromm, E. (1964). It certainly seems to be. Buddhist and Western psychology: Some commonalities and differences. Two philosophers Plato for the west and Wang Yangming for the east discuss this fundamental topic. The concept of the self in Western psychology derives primarily from the work of Freud, Jung, and Rogers. Component parts developed as a delusion differences can be noted mainly in people s... With how to make the Dharma authentically Western relation to the Cosmos is essential Northern America ) ( Hanh 1974... 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