Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
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Re: Is Critical Thinking Active Vipassana?

Post by danieLion » Thu Mar 07, 2013 6:19 pm

A typical problem I and I bet many others have:

1. You have a memory, usually out of the blue, about something you did and feel ashamed (not in the otapa and hiri sense, for that's healthy shame; but in the self-hating sense).

2. You say things to yourself like, "I'm such a jerk," or "I'm such and idiot."

I've trained my self with "active" vipassana to actively dispute these irrational beliefs (a la REBT) by applying the tilakkhana and kilesa teachings (the two functions of vipassana I pointed out above) to my self-defeating beleifs (Cf. David D. Burns).

Take the first word of either sentence, "I'm." Here we have an expression of not only clinging to a view of self (atta/anatta) but also a presumption that this sense of self is how I am permanently (anicca), which, as we know, results in dukkha. We may further see this phenomenon by using Gombrich's and Thanissaro's, "we're processes not things," (see above posts), Korzybski's "is of indenity" theory (see above posts), Thanissaro's "When you define yourself you limit yourself (see above posts), and Ellis', "REBT Diminishes Much of the Human Ego" (see above posts) perspectives in our introspective analysis.
As a process and not a thing (Gombrich, Thanissaro), I can't be/equal "jerk" or "idiot" (Korzybski, Ellis). Yet that's what most of us feel when we say such things to ourselves. It is an attempt at self definition, and definitions are usally attempts to solidify (anicca) one's "being" (Thanissaro).

Furthermore, as an irrational belief (Ellis)--and as the whole process is indicative of--I'm acting out of delusion (moha), and this unrealistic view of myself involves self-hate (dosa). It also involves greed (lobha) for a final summation of who I am, and conceit (mana) as it also usually involves comparing myself to others as non-jerks and non-idiots. It is also engaging in shamelessness (ahirika) and lack of moral dread or unconscientiousness (anottappa) via mental torpor (thina) because instead of taking the time to see distinguish between my past behaviors as mistakes which I can learn from with some Effort, I resort to the quicker and more convenient mis-labeling (see David D' Burns's cognitive distortions) myself with a simple yet innacurate sentence like, "I'm such a jerk."

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