Thursday, January 3, 2013

What ego really is - by Nityananda Atman

What ego really is 

Everyone wants
 happiness, knowledge, wisdom, freedom, harmony, peace, love, creativity,
because all these above come naturally from our SOUL.

But because nowadays ego has become huge in the psych of earthlings the expressions of the above qualities are highly obstructed.

The ego like a virus has occupied our intellect, mind, heart, vital, body and senses and 
uses them for its own superficial goals.
The ego always moves between desire and fear, like and dislike, attraction and repulsion.  
Always wants to possess or achieve something pleasurable and avoid something unpleasant.

Ego creates also various defensive mechanisms to protect itself and be hidden from our conscious mind in order to sustain its sovereign upon the body, mind, senses, intellect and use them according its own desires.

  •        For pleasure (lust, passion, pleasurable experiences by sex, food, sensory stimulus)
  •        For superiority and fame (to feel superior, appproaved, worthy, important, accepted)
  •        For security (of egi itself, of self-image, of possessions, of comforts, of money)
  •        For power (by knowledge, money, possessions, positions etc.)

Pleasure – possessions – money - power - fame - name

The ego wants to possess objects in order to feel, superior, secure, comfortable and have pleasure (sex pleasure, food and drink pleasure and any kind of pleasure through sense stimulation).

In order to achieve the above ego wants prestige, power and money, because with prestige, power and money ego can possess everything it likes.
In order to get them ego either works very hard and damage vitality, mind, senses and body or make sinful actions.
Both cause a lot of suffering but the ego thinking compulsively the illusory pleasure that wants, does not gives any importance to the suffering.   

Ego uses its fellows as instruments to get what it wants That is why the ego tries to manipulate and control its fellows by subtle or very gross ways. This behaviour creates a lot of suffering to the ego itself and others also.The ego usually expresses even violence to achieve what it likes.

Rape of women is perhaps the most common expression of ego-violence based on lust and passion. Sexual lust and passion is the foundation of all egoic propensities (anger, fear, desire, depression etc.) and suffering. We do not realize this because we are so much deluded by this hypnotic passionate power of sexual pleasure.

 Wars are the collective behavior of ego to control and manipulate other nations in order to get from them what it likes. To justify these barbarian actions the ego uses much pretence. Ego declares hypocritically that make these wars in the name of peace, in the name of security of the nation, in the name of God, in the name of the good of all etc.

The ego is always in a struggle to avoid everything that doesn’t like or make it feel unpleasant, insecure, unworthy.
On the other hand ego tries its best to get what it likes. Of Course ego is against anything and everyone who is an obstacle to get what it likes.

Ego makes us live always in separation from others, life and God.

Ego makes us live always in a state of discontentment, uneasiness, incompleteness, neediness, boredom, lacking of something, seeking some kind of pleasure, in a state of anger, bad temperament or irritation (which are subtle anger), fear, anxiety (which is subtle fear), and various degrees of sadness or depression.

Ego every moment make us to want or don't want something,  like or dislike something, to be pleasant or unpleasant with something. Mentally and emotionally we are almost always agitated and restless. We are up and down like the waves of the sea and almost never in equilibrioum, balance, peace, harmony, joyfulness and contentment.

Ego creates first an unpleasant mental and emotional state in us and then impels us to find some pleasure in order to overcome that unpleasant state. Ego does this because above of all loves to experience again and again the same pleasures in a different, better and more intense way, especially food, sex, drink and entertaiment.

The ego can more easily manipulate and drive us towards the pleasubale objects if initially creates in us an unpleasant state. Nobody likes to remain for a long time in an uplesant mood or emotion. What is the easiest way to overcome this unbearable painful state Of course it is to find something that can give us some kind of pleasure. With some pleasure we can, at least for a while, to overcome the painful or unpleasant situation.
The ego makes us also believe that the seeking of the pleasurable  experience is our conscious choice. By playing this psychologiacal game the ego hypnotizes and control us and very easily direct us towards pleasurable experiences.

Ego drives always our awareness to the external world of forms so as to make us forget our Divine nature within, which is eternally free, content, peaceful and blissful. If we are conscious of the bliss which is always present within us and free from all kinds of suffering why to seek fleeting illusory pleasures which are mixed with innumerable ways of suffering?

Ego does not want us neither to be conscious of the psychological conditioning nor to be aware of our Divine blissful nature, because the time we will be become aware of them the ego will lose its sovereignty upon us.


Ego is what identifies with thoughts and creates the compulsive thinking and the mental stories but the ego itself is neither the ‘I thought nor a bundle of thoughts; it identifies with thoughts because through identification with thoughts the ego perpetuates its existence and drives our awareness towards sense objects in order to experience pleasure and pain again and again.

The ego is one field of energy that assumes different forms. 
 Ego is a field of energy crystallized in our astral body due to wrong use of sexual energy and possibly due the development of the organ kundabuffer as George Ivanovich  Gurdieff mention in his book  Beelzebub’stales to his grandson (download).

Ego is primarily crystallized sexual energy which primirily takes the form of lust, desire and passion for sex.
Then lust or desire for sex by association, identification and projection was transferred to food, money, fame, name and sensual entertainment in general; thus gluttony avarice, ambition etc. were born.

The same energy identifies with the physical body and creates the illusory sense ‘the body is me’ or ‘I am the body’, viz. the 'Iness'.

 In summary the primary forms or expressions of the ego-energy is lust, desire and ‘Iness and subsequently this energy modifies to all other forms of ego such as like-dislike, attraction-repulsion, anger, fear, depression, impatient, uneasiness, greed, etc.; the list of ego's modifications is quite huge.
We see to the above image that desire, ‘Iness’ and pain-body are one and the same thing - the so called ‘ego’, which apparently appears as three different things; the core of them is lust.

Due to the modification of desire into ‘Iness’, desiring appears as ‘I desire’ and wanting as ‘I want’. Thus desire deludes us making believe that what desire wants is our conscious choice.

The most vicious game of ego is that make us believe that we are the ego itself. 
Moreover the ego has a miraculous capacity to indentify with everything and superimpose on itself the qualities and capacities that belong to what identifies.

As humans we are a compotition of various sheaths, energies, functions, capacities but primarily we are consciousness.

More precisely we are a composition of:

1. Consciousness - Soul - Existence
 2. Mind:
  • Higher mind or intelligence: intuition, creativity, Discernment between real and unreal, cognition or perception of reality
  • Intellect:  Cognition, Reasoning, Discernment, undersatnding
  • Thinking mind
  • Emotional mind
  • Sensory  - perceptive mind
  • Motor mind
  • Instinctive mind
  • Subconscious mind: memory,(emotional, mental, kinetic or motor, instictive)
3. Vital energy or prana:
  • Psychic prana: it gives the energy for all psychological funtions
  • Physical prana:it gives the energy for all physical actions and functions.
4. Sexual energy
5. Senses: 5 senses of cognition and 5 senses of action
         6. Physical body

The ego which is a psychological virus identifies with the above instruments, functions and energies and uses them for its own purposes.

Ego identifies also with the consciousness and thus creates the illusion that it is sentient and self-aware; that awareness is a quality of ego itself. Subsequently projects awareness on the physical body creating the illusion that the body is self-aware. Due to this idetification the ego delude us and make us believe that we are the body and as body we are self-conscious.

Ego identifying with the body crreates the sense 'the body is me' ('Iness') and takes the potition of the agent of all actions done by the body. Thus creates the illusory sense 'I am the doer'.
Ego identifying with the thinking mind creates to us the illusory sense 'I am the thinker'.
Ego identifying with the emotional mind creates to us the illusory sense 'I am the feeler'.
Ego identifying with the vital creates to us  the illusory sense 'I am the enjoyer'.
Ego identifying ewith the sensory mind creates to us the illusory sense 'I am the perceiver'.
Ego identifying with the intellect creates to us  the illusory sense 'I am the knower'.

Identifying the ego with the externals objects and persons 'Mineness' is developed. Thus we say my car, my wife, my ...... We consider them a an extension of our selves. When we lose them we experience a lot of unnecessary suffering.

Ego claims also as its own the higher qualities and capacities of our existence. Discernment, love, intuition, creativity, compassion, devotion have nothing to do with ego. All these are qualities or expressions of our deeper intelligence or our Soul. But ego creates the illusion that they belong to it. Thus deluded by ego we say, I am compassionate, I am  devotional, I am intelligent, etc.

Another great illusion that the ego creates is that projects and superimposes on the objects qualities that they do not have.
Ego projects on the objects happiness, pleasure and pain and to the people its own qualities. 

Because of this miraculous delusion the ego makes us seek happiness outside from ourselves. So we are caught in the net of desires, pleasures and suffering.

Of course the interaction between our mind and the external objects can create pleasant or unpleasant sensations but cannot cause happiness or pleasure. Moreover these sensations (pleasant or unpleasant ) in reality are created in the mind and by the mind alone. 

The same object can be one time pleasant and other time unpleasant. For example if the weather is cool a very thick overcoat will make us feel pleasant. But if it is very hot the same overcoat will make us feel discomfort and unpleasant. Our physical and mental constitution and the previous experiences also determine what can be pleasant or unpleasant to us.

Only when the external conditions and our mind, body and senses are healthy and in appropriate condition the experience of sense objects can be pleasant.

Pleasant sensations are created by the interaction of mind with the objects under certain conditions but pleasure and happiness are projected on them and has nothing to do with the objects.

Happiness is an attribute of our Soul and the pleasure that is projected on the objects is memorized or crystallized sexual pleasure in our mind and energy field. 

This projection of happiness and pleasure on the external objects happens due to the power of rajas guna and we are unable to be conscious of it because it is veiled by the power of tamas guna. This happens in a twinkle of an eye and is extremely difficult for ordinary persons to be aware of it. 

Only very advanced meditators endowed with pure sattvic minds can possibly have the capacity to be aware of this illusion created by the gunas and the ego.

When by increasing the sattva quality in our mind and by discrimination (discernment) and enquiry we will be aware of this illusory projection and when we be aware of the defects of the sensual pleasures then naturally can arise in us the dispassion or indifference towards sensual pleasures. 

Discrimination (discernment) and dispassion or indifference and detachment are the most important pillars of Self-realization. Without to develop them in a high degree liberation is not possible.

The experience of real happiness (ananda-bliss)

Bliss lies always within our heart, it is an attribute of Consciousness, but we do not experience it because our mind is always agitated and extroverted and we are always in a state of emotional turmoil.
We can experience happiness only when the mind is tranquil and rests in our heart. Desires, fears, anger etc. keep the mind always agitated and the prana (vital energy) contracted. This condition is experienced as suffering. 

When a desire is fulfilled the mind becomes for a while calm, concentrated and introverted. In this mental state the mind reflects naturally the happiness of our inner Self or Consciousness. But we do not recognize it because the ego puts a veil in this process. We think that we experience happiness because we got the desired object.

Due to fulfillment of desires we can experience a little happiness but due to desire, attachment and greed we experience a lot of psychological suffering, bondage and separation. We cannot have desires and pleasures without experiencing suffering because all psychological disorders and defects (fear, anger, depression,  jealousy, avarice, pride,etc.) are only modifications of desire. The impulse or the energy of desire has a heavy vibration which is experienced as suffering. More over desires are insatiable and there is no way to be free from the painful impulses of desire if we try always to fulfill them. 

The spiritual way to happiness

On the other hand there is a way to experience the happiness of our true Self within, without to suffer painful consequences. This is the spiritual way. By purification, self-control, discernment, non-attachment, meditation and self-enquiry we can consciously abide always in our heart and experience the bliss of our own existence.

Freedom, peace and bliss is what we really are but the ego and desires cloud our intelligence and we fail to realize it.  
Ego is our true enemy and not the objects by themselves. If by intense spiritual practices we eliminate from our psych this psychological virus of ego and desires we can experience always unalloyed bliss, peace and freedom.This is our destiny and our eternal abode.

May God bless you realize your true nature in this very life and be Free for ever!

More about ego see:

 Peace, love, harmony.