‘The self isn’t a thing; it’s a process—one that enacts an “I” and in which the “I” is no different from the process itself, rather like the way dancing is a process that enacts a dance and in which the dance is no different from the dancing. From this “enactive” perspective, although meaning and the self have no absolute foundation, neither are they complete illusions or nonexistent; they’re brought forth in how we act and live our lives.’
A complete life may be one ending in so full identification with the non-self that there is no self to die.
“At both ends of your spacetime braid, corresponding to your birth and death, all the threads gradually separate, corresponding to all your particles joining, interacting and finally going their own separate ways. This makes the spacetime structure of your entire life resemble a tree: At the bottom, corresponding to early times, is an elaborate system of roots corresponding to the spacetime trajectories of many particles, which gradually merge into thicker strands and culminate in a single tube-like trunk corresponding to your current body (with a remarkable braid-like pattern inside as we described above). At the top, corresponding to late times, the trunk splits into ever finer branches, corresponding to your particles going their own separate ways once your life is over. In other words, the pattern of life has only a finite extent along the time dimension, with the braid coming apart into frizz at both ends.”
— Max Tegmark
“I’m thinking of what psychologist Eleanor Rosch says in a talk she gave in San Francisco last August called ‘What Buddhist Meditation has to Tell Psychology About the Mind’. At one point she was discussing the Buddhist doctrine of the endlessly ramifying interdependence of everything, and observed that ‘an understanding of [this] interdependence has clinical significance. It can provide people who suffer from guilt, depression, or anxiety with a vision of themselves as part of an interdependent network in which they need neither blame themselves nor feel powerless. In fact it may be that it is only when people are able to see the way in which they are not responsible for events that they can find the deeper level at which it is possible to take responsibility beyond concept and (depending upon the terminology of one’s religious affiliation) repent, forgive, relax, or have power over the phenomenal world’.”
— Galen Strawson
“I don’t feel that it is necessary to know exactly what I am. The main interest in life and work is to become someone else that you were not in the beginning. If you knew when you began a book what you would say at the end, do you think you would have the courage to write it? What is true for writing and for a love relationship is true also for life. The game is worthwhile insofar as we don’t know what will be the end.”
— Michel Foucault