I agree that we “learn” that there is an independent “I.” However, it is not just “taught.” Each of us also experiences not just “an” I. We each experience “I.”
No doubt: “The wish is father (or probably better, “mother” – especially on Mother’s Day!) to the thought.” But that layer of reality doesn’t, ipso facto, make what it is pointing to unreal. It can be that one is true, and one is false. However, theoretically it can instead be that both are real, true.
I have been wondering lately whether the soul–probably more accurate to say the I, or better yet, just “I” (no “the”) is evolving on into the future.
Perhaps our “soul”, our “I” is de facto evolving. We can clearly see its past evolution: from inert matter, to one-cell “life”, to the various levels of life from vegetative to animal to self-aware life.
That last level (Us) seems to be limitless, meaning, among other things, for example:
I am aware of me. Looking in your eyes, I also become aware of you. That is: You exist, and that you are aware of me. Further, you are aware that I am aware that you are aware of Me—further still, of Me being aware of me being aware that you are aware of me….and furtherrrrrr…..
Then we are into a kind of one-sided infinity, limitlessness….
Hmmmm, this is sort of like in Genesis One. We are each an Imago Dei: a “one-sided coin,” “infinite on one side.” That kind of existence makes us both similar to our inert existence, our vegetative life… animal life, self-conscious life. And then, perhaps, a “not-quite-yet-but-coming-into-existence kind of becoming ‘one-sided-coin-existence’’”…….
As Pope Gregory the Great 590-600 wrote: “Non mendacium, sed mysterium!” Not a lie, but a mystery.
If you found this post interesting, you may enjoy these books: Authentic Humanity by Leonard Swidler, and for young adult readers, Does Life Have Meaning, Letters to Will Series, Letter 1 by Leonard Swidler.