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Dharma Diagnostic Clinic, aka "What was that?"

Dharma diagnostics: The strange case of Jim Carrey's no-self

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So Jim Carrey has been going around lately giving weird interviews about tetrahedrons and stuff like that. He talks a lot about no-self and some pseudo-Buddhist mumbo-jumbo, which makes you think, at first sight, that his no-self is quite full of shit.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-JmNKGfFj7w

Given his past depression, his son with autism, his girlfriend who committed suicide after a very troubled relationship in which she accused him of mental and physical abuse and giving her STDs, the simplest explanation is to just chuck it down to the manic phase of some kind of bipolar disorder coupled with reading too many dharma books, being an actor, and impersonating the awakened star slash guru. It may just very likely be the case.

However, in this interview:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NEjWCACG52g

he describes the process by which he got (by his own words) awakened, and how he realised that there is no self, and no Jim Carrey (again his words). He says he had a series of what he calls "awakenings" by going really deep into characters he was playing, and the process of going back into Jim Carrey and then back out of him again into characters and back and forth finally revealed that there is no Jim Carrey.

Now this is very interesting, because it is exactly the way deity work is supposed to work in Shingon, according to Shinzen Young: By substituting your internal image (See In) with the body of a deity, your internal talk (Hear In) with a mantra (or, in this case, lines from a movie), and your moods (Feel In) with the mood that the deity-archetype represents, you gradually delete, or debunk, your "self". Usually, people who are just manic/depressive and read dharma books are not able to point out the difference between an academic/philosophical understanding of the notions they talk about and how they realised them experientially, so this is one potential indicator that he might be on to something.

He also talks into a bit of detail about what it feels like to be him. If you listen carefully, he seems to also be hinting at a feeling of a lack of agency "it is all just happening", and a huge feeling of wonder and gratitude, which remind me of the Tibetan notions of emptiness/luminosity and emptiness/compassion, the way someone who does not know the techinical terms might be talking about them. Or maybe he just read about all this in some popular book that uses non-standard translations of those terms? Could be either thing.

To complete the picture, according to wikipedia, in the past he used magick visualisation techniques to get a 10 million dollars check as an actor, and practiced Transcendental Meditation.

So what does everyone think about Jim Carrey's awakening? No self? Full of shit? Or both?

RE: Dharma diagnostics: The strange case of Jim Carrey's no-self
Answer
9/29/17 7:47 AM as a reply to neko.
Haha - I was just about to write this question!

RE: Dharma diagnostics: The strange case of Jim Carrey's no-self
Answer
9/29/17 9:38 AM as a reply to neko.
Honestly from the clips I've seen I can't help but think it's a PR stunt. It sounds like they're going at an existential angle with this new movie, needed some media attention for publicity, knew Jim had a TM practise and said 'Jim if you just do your best meditation nut impression we'll probably be all over twitter!'. Even if that's so, he may well be speaking from experience completely, who knows. I agree that he seems to be speaking in terms of what happened to him perceptually rather than just repeating cliches, but he still comes off as quite obnoxious and I can't help but think he's more socially aware than to come across that weirdly unconsciously.

The comparison to deity yoga is insightful as hell though, I'd often wondered the same thing about actors going into and out of character, if they'd notice anything deeply about the arbitrary nature of identity, but had never made the connection between that and deity yoga that's so cool!

RE: Dharma diagnostics: The strange case of Jim Carrey's no-self
Answer
9/29/17 9:37 AM as a reply to neko.
It seems to me that this sort of depersonalization / no-self phenomenon would be commonplace among actors. And also tv and radio show hosts, and even musicians.
If one spends a lot of time pretending to be someone else, one can see that identity is something constructed, including one's own.

RE: Dharma diagnostics: The strange case of Jim Carrey's no-self
Answer
9/29/17 9:50 AM as a reply to Sophia.
In my life I have experienced two kinds of depersonalizations or derealizations. The first one was connected with my brain disease and the experience was harrowing and dreadful. The second one appears during concentration and it is very pleasant. emoticon

RE: Dharma diagnostics: The strange case of Jim Carrey's no-self
Answer
9/29/17 10:03 AM as a reply to Alesh Vyhnal.
Alesh Vyhnal:
In my life I have experienced two kinds of depersonalizations or derealizations. The first one was connected with my brain disease and the experience was harrowing and dreadful. The second one appears during concentration and it is very pleasant. emoticon
This is an important distinction.

Lewis:
Even if that's so, he may well be speaking from experience completely, who knows. I agree that he seems to be speaking in terms of what happened to him perceptually rather than just repeating cliches, but he still comes off as quite obnoxious and I can't help but think he's more socially aware than to come across that weirdly unconsciously.
That he seems to come across that weirdly unconsciously speaks in favor of the explanation that he is speaking from experience, based on what happened to him perceptually.

When depersonalization occurs due to what is technically "wrong practice" (whether it's due to e.g. a disease, injury, PTSD, drugs, acting), the person has trouble handling it. When it's due to right practice, the person remains coherent.

RE: Dharma diagnostics: The strange case of Jim Carrey's no-self
Answer
9/29/17 11:17 AM as a reply to Sophia.
He looks pretty manic to me.  My guess is, good drugs, a little practice and manic depression lead him to some version of stream entry wrapped in a lot of delusion. 

RE: Dharma diagnostics: The strange case of Jim Carrey's no-self
Answer
9/29/17 1:40 PM as a reply to neko.
"He says he had a series of what he calls "awakenings" by going really deep into characters he was playing, and the process of going back into Jim Carrey and then back out of him again into characters and back and forth finally revealed that there is no Jim Carrey."

Ah interesting, I sometimes wonder about this as it occured to me that actors may start to question the reality of their own personalities as they don and doff the ones they work with.

RE: Dharma diagnostics: The strange case of Jim Carrey's no-self
Answer
9/29/17 2:11 PM as a reply to Stickman2.
At one point in the second interview, he discusses a realization that he couldn't find "Jim Carrey", followed by "a Spielbergian kind of rack focus at that point, like Roy Scheider on the beach" where reality stretched out and he was watching from another place.  That sounds very much like an experience of one of the Three Doors.

RE: Dharma diagnostics: The strange case of Jim Carrey's no-self
Answer
9/29/17 6:50 PM as a reply to neko.
As long as behaviour improves then that's what matters in this life. Half the practice is behaviour modification and the other half involves insights.

RE: Dharma diagnostics: The strange case of Jim Carrey's no-self
Answer
9/30/17 3:43 AM as a reply to neko.
His insights seem legit. I think he is influenced by neo-Advaita teachings (he mentioned that the well-known neo-Advaita teacher Jeff Foster is his friend)

Many years ago he spoke about an awakening at an Eckhart Tolle conference - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uIaY0l5qV0c

He seems to have progressed from the infinite Self or "I AMness" to a deeper insight into no-self like my own progression or the Thusness map of awakening http://awakeningtoreality.blogspot.sg/2007/03/thusnesss-six-stages-of-experience.html

Jim Carrey - recent articles:

"There is no me. There's just things happening."

"Celebrating icons, boy that is just the absolute lowest aiming
possibility that we could come up with. Do you believe in icons? I don't
believe in personalities. I don't believe that you exist, but there is a
wonderful fragrance in the air."

“There’s just a relative manifestation of consciousness appearing, and
someone gave him a name, a religion, a nationality, and he clustered
those together into something that’s supposed to be a personality, and
it doesn’t actually exist. None of that stuff, if you drill down, is
real.”

"I believe that peace lies beyond personalities, beyond
invention of the skies. Beyond the red 'S' that you wear on your chest
that makes bullets bounce off. I believe that it's deeper than that. I
believe that we're a field of energy dancing for itself and... I don't
care."

“I believe I got famous so I could let go of fame, and
it’s still happening, but not with me,” said Carrey.

“I’m not a part of it anymore. Dressing happens, doing hair happens, interviewing happens,
but it happens without me, without the idea of a ‘me.’ You know what I’m
saying? It’s a weird little semantic jump, and it’s not that far, but
it’s a universe apart from where most people are.”