“To regain our full humanity, we have to regain our experience of connectedness with the entire web of life.”
The Web of Life
There is this misconception in the New Age/spiritual world, and it’s kind of a cancer. Just saying this might be controversial and set me up to be slammed, but it’s bothered me for decades now.
The ego is not bad. Pure and simple. I repeat, and qualify a little:
In itself, the ego is not bad.
Every day I run across writers/philosophers/enlightened experts/plain folks who fear the ego, berate the ego, talk of eliminating, dissolving, transcending the ego, seek to separate themselves from the ego. That is a quest for Shangri-La, or the Holy Grail. Misguided and doomed.
It is an inherently self-destructive quest. Berate the ego and you berate your self—your (and our) whole Self. You basically distrust who you are, because you have this original sin of an ego blotting your pure spiritual essence? Poppycock!
Do you berate a child? Do you decry your thumbs? No. Or if you do, it’s pointless to do so.
The ego comes with the physical package and is as natural and normal and necessary and useful as your thumbs. And it is impossible to be human and to be ego-less. So get used to it and make it work for your greater spiritual self.
The ego is good. Especially when it is hooked up consciously with AllThatIs.
There are reasons and justifications for the fear of the ego and the attendant, sometimes cruel, measures taken to rein it in. And when I get in disputes on this there are conceptual and semantic differences that cause most of the disagreement.
I still hold, however, that the “evils” that the ego “causes” are a false blame. And I_You_We do a great disservice to blame the ego and not look directly at our own use of the ego as the cause of whatever difficulty. Egos don’t run amok, people with egos do.
Many spiritual and psychological teachings make it seem that we are victims of “the ego.” We should catch that tendency and stop those teachings. Again because it puts a divide on top of a divide. Instead, we can concentrate on putting the ego to good use.
Of course, at the other end of the spectrum there are those who simply serve their egos, and that is not putting the ego to good use either. But I would like to eliminate the justification they try to hide behind: “My ego made me do it.” Or when others enable them with the same thinking.
My_Your_Our ego is simply a reflection—but a powerful one that can take on its own perspective. Like in Sleeping Beauty. The ego is an epiphenomenon of the gift/Mystery of Being with the potential for self awareness. The ego is present at the form level, it is an attribute of form, just as consciousness is. Where there is consciousness there is ego.
Which is good. The ego is necessary for navigating the particular camouflage system the personality finds itself living in. The ego is the Conscious Mind’s eyes, the first level of filtering perceptions and external experience, and is as necessary as lungs are for the body to breathe air and make use of oxygen.
The whole darn world, all of this maya, is a reflection. Of our inner self, of our decisions and reactions made using the ego, individually and as groups. Getting lost in the reflections is what I think most are afraid of when they fear the ego. And it’s valid and easy to do. It’s a loss of sense of direct experience and with that a loss of perspective.
The scary self-centeredness that comes with an ego is natural and normal, it is used for each person’s purposes. This planet is a proving ground for determining just how far self-centeredness can go before it takes its toll on a community. The Earth Experience is in many, many ways an experiment in the use of ego.
It’s an experiment in having the ability to forget the Source, or take credit for being the source. That is the definition of this mirror self. The psychological ability to act completely free of all… well, of all everything. AllThatIs had to allow the ego this ability so that we can find out how far unpredictable free will and the idea of independence can travel.
We have learned that lesson. Unbalanced self-centeredness leads to gaingreed and bloodshed basically. To people with egos and no conscience or impulse control running amok. But that is the nature of Freedom, which allows the freedom to do harm to, violate, or even kill others or oneself. Lesson learned.
Now let’s return the ego to its rightful place—collaborating with the Conscious Mind, the part of the self directly connected to the Soul. The Conscious Mind is the part of the personality that can communicate inward with its own intuitions and knowings, as well as process external reality in a knowing way using the ego’s eyes/interpretations (thoughts, beliefs, emotions, expectations). The ego relays to the CM what it should report to or ask of the vast, vast inner/invisible realities. The ego tells its stories, and the CM believes every word so that it can then start the materialization process.
The Conscious Mind, and the entire Inner Self depend on a clear ego. And working together harmoniously, the ego focus with the spirit focus transform experience in ways that we still haven’t seen on a mass level on Earth, or very rarely. And in that collaboration, when we let the ego off its leash, we don’t blame it for running wild, it’s in its nature. Or have to worry about where it’s going. It is free to use its true powers of reflection and expression to be joyful, sharing, and super creative.
This is not a “taming” the ego concept. It’s a going with the ego and guiding it process. “Taming” the ego is like the use of the reasoning mind when doing T’ai Chi. At first you use your head a lot to learn the forms and the sequence of forms. To figure out the transitions from form to form. When the forms, transitions and sequence are ingrained into the body the head can simply witness as the body/forms/Conscious Mind joyfully express inner spirit.
The ego is the head that doesn’t have to always be on top of every moment. When a little direction is needed the head can assert itself. When it’s better to be a unified whole and let the other parts speak, then the head can observe and enjoy. It’s not all meant to be about the ego, but the ego has its part and can ride or surf the waves and steer into the swell or turn with it. Where is the ego in a tight, grooving band? Or in the flight of a flock of starlings?
You may ask, who is controlling the ego? Who or what is in charge of getting it to collaborate with the Conscious Mind? Well, that is for you to discover, because that is really the essence of I_You_We. A much bigger subject—My_Your_Our start, our Source, and the miracle/Mystery that we are here at all. (Hint: it certainly isn’t the brain.)
So. In defense of the ego, the ego is an essential, necessary part of the trajectory of My_Your_Our story. All the ego—the smaller self—wants is to give and receive Love. Just like it’s bigger Self. Just like all of us. In infinite forms/creations…
Now. The Core Material starts with a list. A list of assumptions taken head on to be broken. “No” this and “No” that. To come full circle and as a launching pad for the next stage of the blog I want to turn the “No”s into “Yes”es. But of course I add a twist to my “Yes”es, e.g. the first one could be Yes! Oneness!, but it’s not. My “Yes”es have to do with why we choose to come for The Earth Experience. 🙂
No Dualism=Yes! Illusion of Contrasts!
No Death=Yes! Every moment is valuable!
No Beginning=Yes! We came here with a purpose!
No Randomness/No Chance=Yes! We are free to choose!
No Time=Yes! Cause and effect and materialization!
No Pointlessness/Competition/Stasis=Yes! We grow! Together!
No Boundaries/No Outside=Yes! We get to play with form, personality, events!
No Victims/No Devil(s)=Yes! We get to play good guys/gals and bad gals/guys!
No Physical=Yes! Body: Our Friend and other Mind!
No Limits=Yes! We are Creative Manifesters!
I hope the Core Material is stretching you, especially past any attachment to any particular belief system that limits your limitless Self. Even if you want to tell me this is all crap, I hope for a minute you wonder What If?…
Enjoy the play! 🙂