Asian Philosophy 25 (3):275-292 (2015)

Matthew MacKenzie
Colorado State University
The aim of this article is to take up three closely connected questions. First, does consciousness essentially involve subjectivity? Second, what is the connection, if any, between pre-reflective self-consciousness and subjectivity? And, third, does consciousness necessarily involve an ego or self? I will draw on the Yogācāra–Madhyamaka synthesis of Śāntarakṣita to develop an account of the relation between consciousness, subjectivity, and the self. I will argue, first, that phenomenal consciousness is reflexive or self-illuminating. Second, I will argue that consciousness necessarily involves minimal subjectivity. Third, I will argue that neither the reflexivity nor the subjectivity of consciousness implies that there is any entity such as the self or ego over and above reflexive consciousness. Fourth, I will argue that what we normally think of as ‘the self’ is best understood as a complex, multi-layered process that emerges within the pre..
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DOI 10.1080/09552367.2015.1078140
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Real Materialism: And Other Essays.Galen Strawson - 2008 - Oxford University Press.

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