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Enlightenment might be achieved by the development of the self rather then the dissolution of the self into nothingness. Yes this part is confusing to me, if you are developing yourself much like an athlete does there is an improvement of self.
It is unavoidable to see that it is the self or ego that makes you seek and practice spiritual/mystical teachings in the first place. To sit in meditation for long periods takes enormous "self" discipline. Desiring to rid yourself of desire, yes it is a paradox. I guess it could be argued that there are different types of desires, some mental, some spiritual and the lower ones are to be removed leaving the higher ones. If so you would still have desires, just they would be more noble I guess.A human without desire of any kind would be useless I guess, unable to act or move in this world because they would have no desire to do so, like a person with locked in syndrome, basically a vegetable.
This idea that a person can completely kill the "I" might not even be possible, I spoke to a Taoist once and he said it was a misunderstanding and that a human could never become like that. He said only the creator can be void like that, the on thing yet all things.
Actually, the whole US education system is bent aroudn growing kid's self esteem without telling them what they CAN'T do. You know, the whole "Mine!" mentality that babies are born with. This HAS been fed.
LUXUSMaybe we should actually grow the ego, which sounds terrible at first but think about it.
This is one reason I could never really identify with Buddhism, it seams like they wish to remove all desire because they are worried about it bringing sorrow, so they are ultimately trying to hide from sorrow rather then except it as being part of the deal which to me always seamed a bit cowardly.
In truth if you had no desire/Ego you would have no reason to live
the only reason you move is because you desire to move.
Whats all this stupidity about trying to achieve a state of mind in which you are desire less...you would be useless
plus the paradox that you would first have to desire to be desire less
Spiritual people often repeat a similar phrase to the above but they forget that the part of them that desires mystical experiences, wisdom, enlightenment is also the self.
Maybe we should actually grow the ego, which sounds terrible at first but think about it
* Being obsessed and worrying about your self image
* Feeling more important than others and not being fair
* Having a sense of entitlement and not care about another's point of view
* Easily feel hurt by someone insulting you
* Trying to become 'better' (whatever that is) and always fear 'loosing' because you don't want to feel like a 'loser'