How to tame your ego
Vail CO, Colorado
What makes your decisions throughout your day ” your heart or your ego? How can you tell the difference? How do we know when the ego has us believing we are speaking from our hearts? What is the ego?
From a spiritual perspective, the ego is the illusion of individual existence. It is the part which believes it is the human being, and believes it must fight for itself in the world. With a small amount of space here to write about the ego, I will avoid too many perspectives of such. I would like to focus on how to recognize the ego-mind voice over the voice of the soul.
“The extent of the ego’s inability to recognize itself and see what it is doing is staggering and unbelievable. To become free of the ego is not really a big job but a very small one. All you need to do is be aware of your thoughts and emotions ” as they happen. This is not really a ‘doing’ but an alert ‘seeing.’ In that sense, it is true that there is nothing you can do to become free of the ego. When that shift happens, which is the shift from thinking to awareness, an intelligence far greater than the ego’s cleverness begins to operate in your life. Emotions and even thoughts become depersonalized through awareness. Their impersonal nature is recognized. There is no longer a self in them. They are just human emotions, human thoughts. Your entire personal history, which is ultimately no more than a story, a bundle of thoughts and emotions, becomes of secondary importance and no longer occupies the forefront of your consciousness. It no longer forms the basis for your sense of identity. You are the light of Presence, the awareness that is prior to and deeper than any thoughts and emotions,” writes Eckhart Tolle in his book on the subject, “A New Earth.”
This is a concise explanation of the ego. The ego is, for the most part, the personality. If you picture your soul as holding the essence, the truth, of who you really are, then the personality holds the “stuff” ” the anger, guilt, doubt, judgment, etc. If we walk around all day in anger, it is the ego that has a hold of you at that time. If we recognize that we are angry and choose to live in the “light of the Presence,” then you can instantaneously shift your consciousness.
We can learn to tame the ego. It is our discriminating voice, i.e. it will be the voice that speaks to you when you think you can run across the street with cars coming; it will be the voice that tells you it will hurt when you get hit by the cars; it is the voice that may even call you stupid for thinking you can cross that road.
But it’s also the voice that may call you stupid for things not as important as trying to cross a busy street. It is the voice that beats you up for the slightest mistake. It is the voice that judges others for their mistakes. It is the voice that convinces you that anger, not peace, is the best reaction to situations. It is the voice that tells you that if you lived in peace, if you let things go, you would be unhappy and bored.
To tame the ego is to recognize when it arises and choose a new approach to the situation. By changing our thoughts, we begin to teach the ego that it is not the thing in control; instead, that we know we are part of a higher energy and the lower energies of the ego will not be the driver of our bus.
Catherine Zeeb holds a Doctorate of Philosophy in Metaphysics. She has a private therapy practice in Edwards and teaches Metaphysics at Colorado Mountain College in Edwards. You can visit her Web site at http://www.healing-spirits.net.
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VAIL — The lift operator in the maze at Vail Village’s Gondola One tilts his head back and hollers: “Masks up please!”