In this episode, we take a simple, useful, and down-to-earth stroll through one of the most confounding -- but liberating -- concepts in Buddhism. On the one hand, Buddhists tell us the self is an illusion: “You don’t exist!” On the other hand, they tell us, “Well actually, on some level, you do, of course, exist.” So which is it? The answer is: both. But this concept -- call it not-self, selflessness, egolessness, or emptiness -- doesn’t have to be some hopelessly esoteric riddle; it is actually a game-changer that we can all apply in our own lives. Here to tell us how is Guy Armstrong, who has been a meditation teacher in the insight tradition for decades. He’s written a book called Emptiness: A Practical Guide for Meditators. He is the husband of Sally Armstrong, who appeared on the show just a few weeks ago. I actually conducted the interviews back-to-back last fall. But even though this was recorded before the wretched events of 2020, the concepts herein are, I assure you, perennially useful.
Where to find Guy Armstrong online:
Book: Emptiness: A Practical Guide for Meditators - https://bookshop.org/books/emptiness-a-practical-guide-for-meditators/9781614295266
You can always get started with the Ten Percent Happier app with our flagship course, The Basics. In The Basics, Joseph Goldstein and Dan Harris discuss the fundamentals of mediation and dispel common myths about meditation in a seven-day meditation series. Visit https://10percenthappier.app.link/TheBasicsPod to get started.
Other Resources Mentioned:
Compassion and Emptiness in Early Buddhist Meditation by Bhikkhu Anālayo - https://bookshop.org/books/compassion-and-emptiness-in-early-buddhist-meditation/9781909314559
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Full Shownotes: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast-episode/guy-armstrong-270
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