This post follows on from my previous 2 posts relating to the body:
Why does this matter?
It is the belief that ‘I am the body’ (or ‘I am the body-mind’) that gives rise to all this suffering. More specifically it is the belief that I am a separate entity, the doer, that thinks thoughts and instigates actions, that is the root cause of suffering.
This belief in ‘I am the body’ or I am the separate doer-entity goes by many names. It can be called ignorance (avidya in Sanskrit), samsara, the ego (ahamkara), original sin, conceit, hell, etc…
It is the root cause of suffering.
Uprooting this belief is the primary purpose of all wisdom traditions and wisdom teachings, and each tradition and teaching provides us with a unique methodology for doing this.
One of the simplest ways of seeing this truth of no-doer is simply by calming the mind (samatha in Pali) and looking and seeing there is no evidence for a doer-entity (vipassana). The Buddha referred to this as no-self (anatta) or emptiness of self (sunyata)*.
To be continued in my next post: Why seeing/understanding alone may not be enough