Anatta Doctrine is the core of Buddhism!
Individual existence, as well as the whole world,
is in absolute reality nothing
but a process of ever changing phenomena, which all are included
in the five
groups of existence: Form, Feeling, Perception, Construction & Consciousness!
This process has gone on from time immemorial, before one's birth, & also
one's death it will continue for an endless period of time, as long, and as
as there are causing conditions feeding it! These five groups of phenomena in
no way constitute an ego-entity, enduring personality, same self or inner soul
neither when taken separately, nor when combined... Neither can any
or 'substance' be found 'outside' of these all embracing groups of phenomena...
In other words, the five groups of existence are no-self or no-self =
nor do they belong to a self = anattaniya. In view of the impermanence
conditionality of all existence, a belief in any form of ego-self must be evaluated
as an illusion. Why so? Self must stay the 'same' in order to remain a true
An ego 'I-dentity' can only be truly so if it remains
identical & the same over time.
But nothing here or there ever stays the same! All is transient
Secondly: Self must be in control to be called a self. But no self can control
causality... Things arise
and cease - despite whatever self - due to their conditions...
Since nothing stays the 'same' as an identical identity, no thing can
ever be a self!
Since nothing is in full control even of 'itself' or any other, no thing can be
Just as what we designate by the name 'car', has no existence apart from axle,
wheels, motor, chassis, and so forth, or as the word house is only a convenient
designation for various materials such as cement, clay, wood etc. put together
in a specific way so as to close a portion of space. Apart from these materials
there is no separate 'house entity' in existence! In exactly same way is that,
which we call a 'being' or 'individual', or 'person', or by the name 'I' or
nothing but an ever changing mixture of physical & mental phenomena, made up
of the above mentioned five groups and has as such no real existence in itself...!
This is, in brief, the anatta doctrine of the Buddha: The teaching that
that all that exists -dead or alive- is void (suñña) of a permanent self or
It is the key fundamental Buddhist doctrine, not found at all in any other religious
or philosophical system! To comprehend it fully, not only in a neat abstract
intellectual way, but by constant reference to actual experience, is indeed
indispensable condition for the true understanding of the Buddha-Dhamma and
for the realization of its goal:
Venerable Nyanatiloka Thera: Born 1922 in Germany. Died 1957 on Ceylon.
As the Buddha said:
"Blissful is solitude for one who is content, learned & who see
the true Dhamma.
More Blissful is harmlessness towards all beings without
Even more Blissful is freedom from any sensual urge whatsoever.
Yet, the supreme bliss, is the elimination of this abysmal
self-deception 'I am'!"
Udana – Inspiration: II – 1
The Ego Tunnel
- Prof. Dr. Thomas
Metzinger TED video:
For more on Anatta = No-Self
= Fundamental Core Voidness see:
Question: If there neither is any 'Self' or any
'Substance' what is 'Reality' then?
Answer: Fundamentally Void and