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What is the difference between the True Self and Unique Self? Ken Wilber and Marc Gafni approach this topic in the third part of the dialogue on Unique Self (about 24 minutes). Early in the conversation, Ken says:

Ken Wilber: The egoic self still has not yet passed through Emptiness, so it still believes it has a real existence and is something that is permanently everlastingly existing instead of something that is timelessly existing, and its specialness comes from the way it is different from other egos, and it still hasn't experienced the True Self. At most, it exists at the soul level. The soul still exists -- the soul is essentially the self in subtle realms. In the causal realms, it's the True Self. The whole point that making sure you've passed through Emptiness is to strip through the soul of the separate self at that level.

Marc coined the term "Unique Self" in his book Soul Prints, and has been working to develop the Unique Self teaching for over two decades. Marc's latest book, Your Unique Self: The Radical Path to Personal Enlightenment, explores and unpacks it even further. For a timeline of the Unique Self's development, see the Unique Self Timeline.

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One Response to “Unique Self Dialogue: Ken Wilber & Marc Gafni, Part 3”

  1. Hans Jecklin

    I suggest reading this (or similar texts in Kashmir Shivaism) :In 2005, commenting on the Tibetan Book of the Dead, a text in the highest yoga tantra, the 14th Dalai Lama explained how this tantra conceives both of a temporary person, and a subtle person or self, which it links to the Buddha nature. He writes:
    … when we look at [the] interdependence of mental and physical constituents from the perspective of Highest Yoga Tantra, there are two concepts of a person. One is the temporary person or self, that is as we exist at the moment, and this is labeled on the basis of our coarse or gross physical body and conditioned mind, and, at the same time, there is a subtle person or self which is designated in dependence on the subtle body and subtle mind. This subtle body and subtle mind are seen as a single entity that has two facets. The aspect which has the quality of awareness, which can reflect and has the power of cognition, is the subtle mind. Simultaneously, there is its energy, the force that activates the mind towards its object – this is the subtle body or subtle wind. These two inextricably conjoined qualities are regarded, in Highest Yoga Tantra, as the ultimate nature of a person and are identified as buddha nature, the essential or actual nature of mind.

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  1.  Unique Self Dialogue: Ken Wilber & Marc Gafni, Part 3 | Unique Self
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