Eliminating selves and persons

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The Buddhist no-self and no-person revisionary metaphysics aims to produce a better structure that is motivated by the normative goal of eliminating, or at least reducing, suffering. The revised structure, in turn, entails a major reconsideration of our ordinary everyday person-related concerns and practices and interpersonal attitudes, such as moral responsibility, praise and blame, compensation, and social treatment. This essay explores the extent to which we must alter and perhaps discard some of our practical commitments in light of the Buddhist revisionism. I do not argue here that we should change our ordinary practices, concerns, and attitudes, or that the Buddhist metaphysics does succeed in presenting a better structure. Rather, I offer it as an alternative structure that should be considered seriously.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)273-294
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of the American Philosophical Association
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Buddhism
  • person-related practices
  • persons
  • revisionary metaphysics

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