Authors
Christian Coseru
College of Charleston
Abstract
Given that all Buddhists give universal scope to the no-self view, accounts of personal identity in Buddhism cannot rest on egological conceptions of self-consciousness. Without a conception of consciousness as the property, function, or dimension of an enduring subject or self, how, then, do mental states acquire their first-personal character? What it is that in virtue of which mental states exhibit a basic or minimal sense of self? These questions are at the heart of a long debate about the nature and character of consciousness and self-consciousness. This paper traces the genealogy of key concepts of consciousness and personal identity in Buddhism, their role in articulating specific accounts of self-knowledge, and their relevance to contemporary debates in phenomenology and philosophy of mind about the relation between consciousness and self-consciousness.
Keywords self-consciousness  personal identity  no-self  self  phenomenal consciousness  Buddhist philosophy of mind
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