Tibetan Buddhism based self-induced schizophrenia (fork of Bronyism)

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puke puke's picture
Tibetan Buddhism based self-induced schizophrenia (fork of Bronyism)
Surely I am late to this party, and the last one to know about this. But I'll just leave this here anyway. http://www.vice.com/read/tulpamancy-internet-subculture-892 I think this sort of stuff is fascinating and worthy of contemplation. I'll reserve judgement as to the merits or ills of any particular non-evangelical lifestyle, but I do think it is worth considering why this kind of stuff is being invented (and verily, why it was originally invented in the ancient world) and what its sociological function is.
Steel Accord Steel Accord's picture
Well as with all things, I think as long as it's not harmful, I see no fault in the practice. Really tulpa's are kind of interesting as, even though they are supposedly distinct minds, they are birthed from the person's brain. It can make self examination easier. I mean, imagine if someone had a Tulpa of Jiminy Cricket, a literal manifestation of their conscience. I think that would be cool!
Your passion is power. Focus it. Your body is a tool. Hone it. Transhummanity is a pantheon. Exalt it!
Dison Dison's picture
It's more than likely that I
It's more than likely that I'm biased because my family is full of people in the physical and mental health business, so take this with a grain of salt. I can't help but see tulpas as a rather worrying attempt to deliberately induce schizophrenia, dissociative identity disorder (Also called multiple personality disorder), or some other dissociative mental illness in yourself, and I can't bring myself to call it harmless, because such illnesses can cause major trouble functioning in society. Sure, it sounds harmless, but if you're persistently hallucinating 24/7, no matter the subject matter, you will likely have trouble functioning, and thus it's a form of self-harm. It also ties into a larger trend I'm starting to notice of people trying to legitimize actual mental illnesses instead of seeking treatment, for whatever personal reason, which worries me even more. However, I acknowledge that I'm likely biased on the subject, and would love to hear evidence proving me wrong or even that I'm doomsaying without due cause.
whitespace551 whitespace551's picture
I have a tulpa.
I have a tulpa. I made him by accident when I was writing a book. The book fizzled out, but the main character stayed. And wouldn't shut up. It's been three years now. As far as I'm concerned, tulpamancy is a lot like the normal bits of character development, when you create a character and flesh them out in your head - you know what they do, how they react. Many writers talk about their characters reacting to situations in their lives, or demanding control of the story to go in /their/ direction, or liking or not-liking certain things. Except then you just keep doing it until it becomes second nature to hear them snark about your life, and then they don't leave. This is definitely not schizophrenia. Maybe, /maybe/, it's close to multiple personality disorder. I don't think mine is a distinct mind. He's software running on the bits of my brain that simulate what other people think. Very good, well-used software, true, but still software. I wouldn't accord him moral rights or anything like that. He has, however, been extremely helpful in being "someone" I can bounce ideas off of for brainstorming (although not so effective as a real person), and in implementing things like learning CBT from a book to do therapy to myself. I think in EP terms he's kind of like running a muse on my brain, very very slowly and primitively - and even given the constraints, he's been very useful. Some people go a bit overboard with it, but that's true for everything. I have no respect for people who deliberately make their tulpas ponies.
Zarpaulus Zarpaulus's picture
At least they can't take
At least they can't take physical form like in Shadowrun. I've actually read a few sci-fi stories where it's socially acceptable to cultivate split personalities in the future. In Blindsight by Peter Watts the team linguist had her brain surgically partitioned to produce four personas collectively known as "the gang of four". And in Walter Scott Williams' Aristoi most high-ranking members of the Logarchy have several "daimones" which seem to act exactly like the "tulpas" described in the article. Most of the time their hosts use them like Muses, but they can occasionally take control.