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Ego

Discussion in 'Snippets of Life (Non-Fiction)' started by Viswamitra, Jul 19, 2015.

  1. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra Finest Post Winner

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    (The views expressed here other than the quotes from the great souls in the first four paragraphs are the authors own view of analyzing himself. No ill will is intended against the words of wisdom from the great souls quoted here. This may or may not be applicable to the readers. Readers discretion is advised)

    “Truth will never come into our minds so long as there will remain the faintest shadow of Ahamkâra (egotism). All of you should try to root out this devil from your heart. Complete self-surrender is the only way to spiritual illumination” - Swami Vivekananda

    "Love and ego cannot go together. Knowledge and ego go together perfectly well, but love and ego cannot go together, not at all. They cannot keep company. They are like darkness and light: if light is there darkness cannot be. Darkness can only be if light is not there. If love is not there the ego can be; if love is there the ego cannot be. And vice versa, if ego is dropped, love arrives from all the directions. It simply starts pouring in you from everywhere” - Osho

    “Service is the highest spiritual discipline. Prayer and meditation, or knowledge of scriptures and Vedanta (the holy scriptures of India), cannot help you reach the goal as quickly as service can. Service has double effect, it extinguishes the ego and gives bliss” – Sai Baba

    “All bad qualities center round the ego. When the ego is gone, realization results by itself. There are neither good nor bad qualities in the Self. The Self is free from all qualities. Qualities pertain to the mind only” – Ramana Maharishi

    It has always been a struggle to extinguish ego out of my system. I call it as “Ever Growing Organism” that never stops growing even though my physical body stopped growing after certain age and focus only on regeneration of cells. When I carefully review, I noticed that the Universal Absolute has given me senses, body and brain soaked in solutions. My eyes are equipped with a liquid to shed tears and try and remove the pain of the fellow beings, my ears have a liquid that helps maintain my balance in hearing the right thing to strengthen my love, tongue soaked in saliva to express my love, brain filled and surrounded with cerebrospinal fluid and my body filled with circulating blood only to perform actions filled with love. Overall, 2/3[SUP]rd[/SUP] of my body is filled with water to bring in the factor of love and compassion in everything I do. Unfortunately, my ego solidifies them and makes them become like a dry powder ammunition ready to explode anytime.

    Can I self-surrender to eliminate by egotism? Can I soak myself with love to destroy my ego? Can I serve the people around me constantly to dilute my ego? Can I get to my Self quickly enough to get rid of ego? I am far away from self-surrender. I know money comes and goes but love comes and grows. But can I sustain my love 24/7 in every thought, word and action? It is an uphill task for me. Can I provide selfless service to humanity round the clock? It is difficult for me to sustain providing selfless service every Saturday leave alone doing it every single day. I realize Self has no qualities and realizing my Self is the best way to nullify my ego. But my mind is standing between my Self and me. I know my ego gets and forgets and love gives and forgives.

    When I researched why the human life is filled with pleasure and pain alternatively, I related that to a swing. To move the swing forward, I take the swing backward in order to gain momentum. Similarly, the pendulum of life is swinging constantly between my self-worth and ego.

    I carefully studied why I get charged by the ego from time to time and I figured out that many times I mistake the ego as self-worth. Every time, I receive the words of appreciation from someone, I get carried away too much into the territory of ego. When I am overwhelmed with a thought of how well I can do things that thought feeds my ego with all nutrition it needs. Mostly, that thought takes me from “I can do it” to “No one can do as well as I can” territory. Pride arrives with prejudice unless I am careful. Sometimes, it is the advice that someone seeks from me that strokes my ego very well. I wish, like an ENT specialist extracting sinus from the head and face, I can extract ego and throw it out. It plays hide and seek and I can’t even feel the presence of ego in my thoughts, words and deeds. I call it as lack of vision more than ignorance. Knowledge can cure ignorance as the light kills the darkness but unfortunately ego comes with the knowledge and it is very difficult to remove ego as it hides behind the knowledge.

    I feel my ego is like a malignant cell when my self-worth is like a stem cell that allows replenishing the depleted cells. When my stem cell functions to replace the worn out cell with a new one on a need basis and in the arithmetical progression, my ego grows aggressively in a geometric progression. The best medicine for the malignant growth of ego is to apply humility (immune system). More I take drastic effort to surgically remove my ego, it comes back with the vengeance. I am slowly learning to understand the forward progress of swing into self-worth automatically takes the swing back into ego. I need to experience that initial fall from ego to make the forward progress into self-worth. If I stay in that backward position of ego without experiencing the fall to a normal position of humility, I will lose my balance and fall from the swing.
     
  2. jskls

    jskls IL Hall of Fame

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    Nice one Viswa Sir. An excellent comparison of pleasure and pain to swing, how ego is nurtured and how to build the immune system. Liked the quotes too especially "Ego and Love don't go together" and importance of complete surrender to the Truth. Excellent post.
     
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  3. jayasala42

    jayasala42 IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear viswa,
    A great essay on
    Ego' by an intellectual giant of the group.Shri Viswa.You have dealt with Ego elaborately.many are of opinion that 'Ego' has to be eliminated totally.Is it possible rather feasible?

    There’s a big difference between “letting go” of the Ego and “getting rid” of the Ego. When you are letting go of the Ego it’s a movement free of struggle and has a sense of “compassion” or love at the background. But when you try to get rid of the Ego, there’s an energy of fear and struggle involved in the movement.



    Anything you fight will become more concrete in you.It is not like bringing light to remove darkness.


    The paradox of life is that you cannot become free of anything by fighting it. When you resist something you automatically become shackled to it. In the same way, when you try to fight the Ego, or try to get rid of it or suppress it, you are unconsciously enhancing it.





    There are three parts to the personality according to Sigmund Freud's psychoanalytic theory. These are the ego, id, and superego. The ego consists of your conscious decision making. The id is your instinctual, biological component, and the superego is the social component of our personality and our conscience. Your behavior is determined by the interaction of these three components.



    You have nicely narrated the swing from self worth to Ego.Your way of self assessment is exceptionally exemplary.



    You have made a distinction between'I can do it' and'no one else ,except me,can do it' explaining the distinction between confidence and Ego.Whichever way you express ,when you want to be No:1, automatically it means others will be lagging behind.If I try for University First rank, automatically it amounts to saying all others will be below me.

    In this world of reality nothing can be achieved by persons without ambition or self confidence.Every expression of 'I can' has an embedded ego in it, whether it is accepted or not.
    Why should we struggle ourselves to get rid of'ego' which has its own positive side?
    All epic characters including Krishna, Arjuna and Hanuman are depicted as ego centric in Mahabharata.
    Krishna tells Uddhava,' had Draupathi sought my help earlier I would have come to her help earlier and prevented maana bhangam,"
    " had Yudhi****ira told that Krishna will play on my behalf as Shakuni plays on behalf of Duryodana,I would have played and won."Since both Draupathi and Dharmaputra were egoistic ,I could not go to their rescue."


    When we consider this we feel that Krishna also was equally egoistic that he expects one to approach Him for help and that He won't render assistance unless asked for.

    This is not with a view to direct accusations against Krishna but to bring out the fact that even God is not free from'Ego'.
    Why should we struggle to get rid of this unavoidable ego,which a part and parcel of our mind and lament for our inability?Let us not brand 'ego' as a villain.We can never get separated from Ego.,however much we try.
    Even for sincerely trying to annihilate Ego, you need an ego.

    Jayasala 42
     
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  4. Poetlatha

    Poetlatha Platinum IL'ite

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    Dear Viswa Sir,

    A very good snippet on Ego. Nice, valuable quotes from the great souls. Each quote was like a cut on a polished diamond. The diamond is just raw at the beginning with all the above mentioned qualities or application of qualities, our soul is beaten up like the cut diamond and polished. Each and every aspect is required to become a self, realized being. Love, self-surrender, service, nullifying the opposites from our system, to realize the self as all the above souls have pointed out. But this materialistic world measures everything, in some form of recognition, appreciation, and this becomes hurdles to move up in self-realization. At this point, more challenges are given to us to weigh our quality and we should be like the still waters, calm and quiet for in that deep Silence is Everything. Attachment to praise, longing for recognition, comparing ourselves with others and expectation drags us into the dungeons of the physical world. One thing that we have forgotten is no individual person, being or thing has come to existence on its own. It is all been a combined effort to whatever that exists, but we think : it's Me, it's I. Only when we commence to embrace truly realizing that :we or I and me as an individual is no more, and just live,be and exsist and float around in the river (Spiritual path of the self)we will reach the destination,Ocean.(Abode of The Lord/Supreme Power).

    ( I wanted to convey the meaning of combined effort, so please people do not take it personal).

    Best example, a classical music artist ,(or Anybody who becomes great in any form of art)by praise and recognition ego is boosted, he thinks I have done everything, now I'm the sole authority, I am the king, I am the stalwart, whatever I say goes, etc.,..then what about people who were before you....who laid the foundation from the basics sa,ri,ga, ma,and shaped it even for you to step in and absorb and express. Try to add something to the greatness of it but do not boost yourself that you did everything, you actually did nothing and that is the truth. Everything is already there you have only noticed and brought it out by sharing with the audience. While in that process of your own learning journey, please do not belittle others, or crush others, give them a boost, a lift, so they can enjoy. Enjoy through the humbleness and be grateful that God has blessed you with such a tasteful fruit. Try to become the tree that gives such wonderful fruits so others can taste and do no take the ownership of the Orchard.


    We tend to forget that we were just the amoeba,and evolved into different stages before becoming a human being. As the sounds, Sa, ri, ga, Ma and then the song. We look into the final product and not the puzzles put together. Every single something (place,person,object), have contributed to who we are, so let us not let the ego enter in any form.

    Your last few paragraphs were very beautifully written comparing the ego with the cells. I would love to point out one line that exhibits the ego here please do not take it personal Sir but that is like a perfect example of how ego slips into us without our knowledge. Referred to when you referred to Every Saturday service. Where this might not be necessary. But here again when we want to convey something we have to say that right, I can't do one day service, how am I going to do everyday, every minute, as I'm striving for to become service itself. Then here again it depends really on the individual of in what true motive and intention he has tried to express something, so only the Self knows and the True Seers are shaped by mastering the opposites, beyond antonyms and synonyms, no discriminations as knowledge about the same contributes to ego. Only Love conquers all. For Love has, within it the quality of surrender, service, bliss, and does not give importance to knowledge, and ego, finds itself within the self, very apt quotes used Sir. Lovely snippet. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
     
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  5. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra Finest Post Winner

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    @jskls,

    Thank you for your first response. I am humbled by your kind words. Only immunity I could think of to avoid the effects of ego is humility. I am sure there should be a few more methods to eliminate the effects of ego at the gross root level. How those thoughts come in is difficult to analyze and it is difficult to eliminate ego completely. I agree that those quotes convey very powerful messages especially that ego comes along with knowledge and hides behind the light of knowledge. That only emphasizes the point that ego is very clever to hide in the bright light of knowledge. Most of the time, it is difficult to find ego even during introspection.

    Thank you for your wonderful first response.

    Viswa
     
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  6. Joyoflife

    Joyoflife Gold IL'ite

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    Hello Viswa sir what a nice post. It is so very hard and most of the times impossible to let go this ego. This devil keeps making it's presence felt in a way or the other. These days I am really focusing on spirituality and most of the time this EGO almost kills all the effort. I have truly started believing in the power of love, but seariously my ego says and proves that some people are really hard to love, so it wins again. Now I am taking it as an assignment of life that I really have to have no hard feelings for the people with whom I have huge indiffrences. Hopefully someday I ( and here comes the ego again)will succeed.
     
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  7. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra Finest Post Winner

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    Dear Smt. Jayasala:

    Thank you for your kind words and I am truly humbled by them.

    It is such a great pleasure reading the line "letting go of ego" is different from "getting rid of ego". Your articulation in the next sentence explaining the difference is simply superb. Without love, it is difficult to handle ego.

    I could not articulate it better about the very same thing we struggle to annihilate is the one that become stronger. It is extremely educational to know about three elements explained Sigmund Freud. I need to research each one of them at great length to have a proper understanding.

    It is heartening to know from someone so knowledgeable that my self assessment is in the right track. I take it as your blessings. I hope and pray it helps me to let go of my ego. I enjoyed reading how ego sneaks in when we say "I want to be #1" which appears to be a sincere statement of self-confidence.

    Your explanation of how Lord Krishna exhibited ego when He expected Udhistra and Draupathi to approach Him for help in order to help them convinced me that it is difficult to live without ego as a mortal and only thing I can do is by systematically controlling its growth. You have made a very powerful argument that it is difficult to get rid of and only thing I can work on is to try and let it go on each occasion. It will become a habit over a period of time helping me in my spiritual development.

    Thank you again for your wonderful response and for your guidance here. When I wrote this post, I sincerely tried to elicit responses that would help me grow spiritually and your response really helped me to do just that.

    Viswa
     
  8. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra Finest Post Winner

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    Dear Poetlatha,

    Thank you for your comprehensive response. First thing first.

    I am truly humbled by your comments that it is an nice post with relevant quotes from the great souls. I am glad to know that you enjoyed the analogy of comparing ego with malignant cell. Regarding your comment on ego, the purpose of writing this post is to get pointers to help me correct my mistakes and therefore, I welcome your suggestions and comments pointing out what enhances my ego. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for specifically saying what could trigger my ego. Just to let you know, Saturday for service is a general campaign by voluntary, not-for-profit philanthropic organizations in this part of the United States.

    I could not agree more with you on the interdependence of the individual goals with that of the entire humanity. It is very natural for someone to become unique in his/her accomplishment whether it is the field of music, entertainment, media, sport, etc. There is no doubt that most of them make sincere effort to encourage others to flourish in their respective field through contributing to their growth. There is no doubt that they also realize that they have been blessed by the God. However, sometimes, the sense of pride comes in when one faces constant praise and appreciation and expectations begin to increase. Most other beings are contributing to the world following dharma except the humanity. The very same discriminative faculty that humanity is gifted with for their growth and development gives a great sense of ownership and pride unfortunately. My objective of writing this post is to find ways and means to identify what triggers ego so that I can be aware of such circumstances. I am sure most accomplished personalities are aware that humility is the only way they can get rid of ego and they need to work on it constantly from time to time. It is not a press of the button that eliminates ego.

    Viswa
     
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  9. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra Finest Post Winner

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    Removed as it is duplicate.

    Viswa
     
  10. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra Finest Post Winner

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    Dear Joyoflife,

    Understanding that it is difficult to let go of ego and determination to let go of hard feelings for others is a great trait by itself. It is heartening to know that you believe in the power of love. I wish I was like you several decades back with so much awareness. In my view, all our life experiences are to learn something out of them. More we are hung up in judging others, our ego becomes stronger. Developing habit to find my own fault helps my growth and development. At the end of the day what others think of me or what I would like others to think of me does not matter. It is more important to know how I feel about myself.

    Hats off to you for sharing your experiences here with honesty and sincerity as that is what I wanted to accomplish through this post. Truly, the purpose of my post is not to preach anyone about ego but to elicit experiences so that I can learn from them. You have perfectly understood the purpose and shared exactly what I need to know. Thank you.

    Viswa
     

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