Problems are many and varied,
……….but the experiencer is one…‘I’.
This ‘I’ thought is the ego.
Vedanta says you have no problems; you are the problem!
Generally used to denote arrogance or a superiority complex, the ego has many expressions.
‘I am depressed…elated…brilliant’
ALL expressions of the ego.
Ego is a sense of individuality rising from identification with something or other.
This sense of limitation, makes us want
to acquire and enjoy more.
…If I think I have less than others, jealously arises.
…If I think I have more than others, arrogance rises.
Jealousy, arrogance and depression indicate limitedness, and give sorrow.
Our problems boil down to one problem…
Enquire, ‘Who am I?’ The body or the mind?
If I am not these limited instruments, then there is nothing to limit me;
…there is no sorrow.
A person who has realised the Self is without ego,
without sorrow – totally peaceful.
An actor can remain without his role,
BUT the role cannot be without him.
Actions without a sense of ‘I’ help remove the ego.
Ego is of two kinds:
- the technical ego (‘I am Ram’, ‘I am an Indian’)
- the problematic ego (the sense of ‘I-ness’ or individuality).
The technical ego is necessary to transact in the world.
The problematic ego is the one that gives us sorrow.
It is important to cultivate the attitude:
‘You, God, are the doer. I am Your instrument.
You are the Lord. I am Your servant.
I accept everything you give as prasada.’
Bondage comes from the feeling: ‘I am the doer’, not from the thought: ‘I am an instrument’.
If the musician’s performance is not good, people blame the musician, not the instrument.
Devotion to God is called bhakti.
Total love of God purges negativities
and purifies the mind.
In bhakti, we lose our identity
…and become a zero before Him.
When the seeker becomes the total, there is:
- no sense of duality
- no ego
- no sense of limitation
The devotee feels: ‘I do not exist. Only God is everywhere.’
The sense of individuality is dissolved.
The ego disappears.
The problem of the ego is overcome through any one or a combination of :