Friday, October 12, 2007

Self and Imagination. The imaginary self

"The natural scientific thought is that the identity of a human being is just that of a large mammal undergoing the natural process of birth, aging and eventual death. The real enemy of this thought is our imagination, which enables us to envisage ourselves born to a different body at a different time, or even floating free of our present reincarnation and surviving as heaven-knows-what.
....The first serious opponent of the notion that imagination can help define identity in western philosophy was David Hume.
Literary and narrative conceptions of the self that have been prominent since the late 20th century, which have us constantly telling and retelling ourselves who we are, thereby constructing our identities in something like the way an author constructs a character. Selves become useful fictions, a notion that has appealed to some neurophysiologists anxious to find a unifying function that ties together the otherwise heterogeneous structures or 'modules' responsible for how we respond to the world.
The awkward, lurking question of who is the author (and who the audience) of these stories is best left a little vague."
New Scientist, August 2006.

After Self-realisation, the faculty of the human imagination becomes one with the Imagination of the Universal Self. The Self imagines itself however it pleases, and that imagining is reality.

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