Topics Worth Investigating

  1. What does it mean to have the goal to recognize Atman?

  2. What do you think is this "innermost self"? Morris Berman writes

    Central to Jungian psychology is the concept of "individuation," the process whereby a person discovers and evolves his Self, as opposed to his ego. The ego is a persona, a mask created and demanded by everyday social interaction, and, as such, it constitutes the center of our conscious life, our understanding of ourselves through the eyes of others. The Self, on the other hand, is our true center, our awareness of ourselves without outside interference, and it is developed by bringing the conscious and unconscious parts of our minds into harmony.[1]

    Are the subconscious or unconscious parts of our mind the "innermost self"? Or are the habits which make up our character or our essence, the "innermost self"?

  3. Since Siddhartha seemed to have everything going for him, why would he be so discontent? Is he simply seeking the independence of adulthood? Would it be for Siddhartha, as Emerson writes, "Discontent is the want of self-reliance; it is infirmity of the will"?[2]



Morris Berman. The Reenchantment of the World. Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 1981.


Ralph Waldo Emerson. "Self-Reliance" in Essays: First Series. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin & Co., 1942.