Hey there, I tried to find my answer to this in both the Maya FAQ and bugs and glitches but I didn't seem to find it.
I have a problem with the selection, I knew the answer to this before but apparently I forgot or it changed name in the later versions.

I for instance have a house modeled out with lots of stuff in it, and when I want to select like a chair, pot or a lamp the things behind these gets selected instead. So when I try to select a lamp the roof gets selected which is behind the lamp. And with a pot the wall of the house gets selected.

I recall there is a setting for this of what should be selected (like a level system) but I can't seem to find it. It's with Maya 2008. Any help appreciated, I have a scene with lots of stuff, and the only solution for this is that I export everything and import it into a new scene, as that scene isn't messed up selection wise.