Tuesday, Jul 17 2018
EGO - 17 Apr 2014
I am glad to share with you my thoughts on “EGO, man’s greatest enemy.”
What is ego? In this case, Ego is a person's sense of self-esteem or self-importance and not the famous fashion brand, EGO. Ego is also the world’s famous disease and a type of slow poison.
We might be thinking that Ego only comes into us when we do bad things but the play of EGO is so subtle that it sometimes springs from doing the right thing too! How? Well, Adi Sankara has said in his famous treatise - Viveka Chudamani - that the toughest ego to overcome is the ego of being righteous. This can be true. Example, if I help an old lady carry her things, I will feel proud of myself that it eventually turns into ego. This is the main reason why Swami would say that when you serve, think that you are serving yourself or God.
So, how do we not have ‘Ego’? The truth is that we cannot be far removed from ego. Ego is from within us. One way is to give ourselves to God. The Avatar lived His life to show us the way. However, we still let the cocoon of ego bind us and refuse to develop the wings He wants us to, in order to soar into the skies. Dorothee Solie once said, “With the disappearance of God, the Ego moves forward to become the sole divinity. I hope we stop 'Edging God Out' of our lives.”
There are three things to help us feel better than ego. They are, being grateful, never boasting and choosing love.
What can we do to combat our ego? Be Aware. We need to start becoming aware of when our ego is playing up so that we can stop it before it is too late!
So what are a few symptoms for the world’s most famous disease called, ‘Ego’?
Firstly, we would find ourselves in a feisty discussion and we cannot back down until we have ‘won’ the argument.
Secondly, we constantly compare ourselves with others.
Thirdly, we feel jealous when other people do well.
Fourthly, we blame others when things don’t go our way.
Finally, we would rather win than do our best.
Sometimes, we can use our ego in a positive way. I once read that ego can take us to good places. You might be wondering how? Well, ego can be self-destructive. But it does not necessarily have to be. It can help us in tough times. For example, if we don’t know question in the exam, our ego will be the following background music, “You can do it. You can achieve it. You are special, unique, awesome, brilliant, so on so forth.” With that, we will get some encouragement and will preservere. So, if ego does not control us, it can be a great asset.
I would like to conclude my speech with a famous quote by Gandhiji, “The world has enough to satisfy every man's needs but not enough to satisfy one man's greed.”
JAI SAI RAM
Sis Sai Prinaka