An illusion of separation


I know I am a broken record with all this stuff but every time I see something new about no self I don’t really know how to respond to it. It talks about how the self that we take to be me and mine is made of parts outside us and that we see things in relation to others. I’m not sure if it is true or not.

Seems to me that, for the most part, we need to perceive our “separateness” in order to function in life. If we can shut off the sense of separateness and achieve a sense of interconnectedness with all things, that’s cool, but I don’t see how that sense could be maintained for more than brief periods, because we need to function.

I get that but I wonder how true the arguments being presented in the link are. I mean they talk about reality from the point of view of the body, the mind, and consciousness. After reading all that it smacked of being just plain fishy to me. Plus it still reminds me of how the feelings of oneness are just a product of meditation, and not really revelatory of existence itself.


While things are connected in a sense they are also in a sense separate.


It just seemed more like another article rooted in experience and not evidence.

The way they phrase the self isn’t what is used in psychology and there doesn’t seem to be data to back it. My psychology professor mentioned how twins can be genetically similar but have completely different interests, which is indicative of a “self”. It’s not a mask, and while feelings and thoughts rise and fall they do provide us with information and they also recur when presented again.

I know the counter they have is that this is only in relation to other things and that without them there would be no reaction, but I don’t find that convincing anymore. After all, something did respond to that stimulus in a way different from someone else, so it is inherent to an extent. Also we don’t exist without relation to anything else, which I get is their main point but that doesn’t mean there is no “self” and in some cases the whole is distinct and in some cases separate from it’s parts.

I guess I’m saying that their definition of things isn’t how we use it today.

When I was in my 30’s I went off the deep end and had what I thought was clarity, but in reality I was just feeding people crazy ideas of what I thought I was seeing.

Here’s the list

  1. For a lack of a better word, we are spiritual beings having a physical existence. We exist spiritually at our core but our minds prevent us from seeing it. Hence, the reason for meditating is to let go of all thought. Siddhartha’s moment of clarity made sense to me (back then) in that he let go of all thought and could see his core existence.
  2. Spirituality exists outside of time.
  3. There is no memory in spirituality. Since there’s no time there is no past or future.
  4. Spirituality doesn’t come at you in parts. You see it as a whole. The best way I could describe this is to imagine entering a giant room filled with pictures in it. You can see all the pictures in the room, but would need to focus on each one individually to know what it’s a picture of. The more you look at it the more detail you can get.
  5. When you die you don’t go to any spiritual realm because you’re already connected to it.
  6. When you die you as a person no longer exist. There is no afterlife.
  7. Consider every part of your physical self both mind and body. Remove that, and whatever part of you still exists is spirituality.
  8. I decided to let go of the connection and move on with my life, so being that I could only tell you what I remember, unlike before where I could a person what I was seeing.
So my old self would say that separation is not an illusion since it’s at the physical level, but spiritually I could not confirm that we were all one being. That’s just my 2c of muddled thoughts. I prefer to live with my feet grounded on what I know for sure rather than trying to live out that life anymore.

A lot of the just sounds like nonsense to me.

I know that I was raised on religion and later spirituality and so I guess the only reason I listened to all that stuff was because some part of me wanted it to be true. But the more I looked into it and the more I learned the more I saw that I couldn’t justify it anymore. That much of the evidence was usually misunderstood to support it. That what is spiritual is just the brain, like the mind and consciousness. Siddhartha had a moment, but today I’m doubting it was clarity.

But it is still hard for me to let it go entirely.

Of course it’s all nonsense, but that’s what I saw, not what someone told me. Like I said, I let it go, and decided to live with my feet on the ground by things I know for sure. My statement about Siddhartha was based on my personal experiences vs what beliefs of such topics were out there. I grew up with my mom being a Methodist and my stepdad (an old member of this forum) being an Atheist. I grew up believing in Christianity, so the idea that I found Siddhartha to being right over Christianity was somewhat of a big deal to me in that my moment of insanity/clarity pitted me against exactly that which I grew up believing. If anything it taught me was that nothing matters, and that it’s a bad joke that people think that faith in their beliefs make what they believe more real. Reality doesn’t give a shit about what you think. Spend your days thinking your a girl in a mans body or vice verse doesn’t change what is, but now was live in a world that supports bad ideas as though it was truth beyond criticism.

I got a little soured one Buddhism and other religions like it when I tried to tell them their peak experience is just brain activity (and that we can replicate it with magnets). But then they throw out more lines about how you can’t “conceptualize” it and that it is mind and blah blah blah. I’m starting to let go a little each day, but having grown up drenched in many forms of spirituality makes it difficult.