Thursday, October 15, 2009
How to Become Free of the Ego
The ego exists out of the experience that life is not the way it is supposed to be. The ego is constantly whispering and sometimes shouting “ This isn’t it !”. The ego is constantly moving away from the present moment, resisting the simple experience of being here now, unable to relax safely and peacefully with things exactly as they presently are. The ego cannot accept the “what is”. The ego cannot accept reality. The ego is by definition unhappy and long-suffering. Only acceptance and love bring happiness – acceptance of self, acceptance of others, acceptance of challenges, acceptance of life as it is.
The ego lives in a perpetual state of control and contraction, in a desperate attempt to make life be the way it thinks it should be. The ego contracts and separates by resisting reality. The very nature of the ego is stress – rejection of the way things are. Cultivating awareness and acceptance and responsibility for one’s own inner state is the path to be free of the ego.
In awareness you are watching this moment. You are a detached observer of the contents of awareness – feelings, thoughts, perceptions, sensations. In order to watch this moment, you have to let go of resistance and allow it to be as it is. You have to accept that everything is as it is, whether you like it or not. It is futile to fight with the nature of reality. Fighting with reality is the essence of suffering.
First you have to let go of trying to control, take a deep breath, then you can watch. Then what you are watching no longer defines you and limits you and causes you to suffer. You realize that you are bigger, vaster and more spacious that the contents of your awareness. You are awareness itself - vast, spacious and free. You eventually become deeply allowing of the way things are. You start embracing the limitations of the human condition, and you start experiencing your true nature as love itself. By accepting your human nature, you discover your oneness with your divine nature. Once you discover your oneness with your divine nature, instead of being the controller, the resister, you naturally become a co-creator with the universe of a more highly evolved world. You step into your true power as a channel for peace.
Life is a constant test of faith and surrender - faith that everything will be okay if you stop trying to control this moment. Surrender is required because the world you know is constantly falling out from beneath your feet. Change is constant and often unpredictable. Death happens, loss happens, conflict happens. Gradually and sometimes suddenly, the illusion of being able to turn this moment into something else ceases and you are simply left with this moment. You discover that it is safe to let go and just be. From this place of stillness and silence and surrender, wisdom comes from within about the right action to take in the face of whatever challenge you are facing.
Once you let go of that constant urge to move forward, to move away from this moment exactly as it is, there is only relaxed nonreactive awareness, which is intrinsically accepting and blissful. That is where true beauty shines – in the simple joy of being, not requiring anything to be different in order to be at peace. It is awareness and acceptance that bring personal growth and eventually bliss. Mature spirituality is the deep humble allowing of reality to be as it is.
If you are aware and awake and responsible for your own inner state of acceptance, instead of unconsciously resisting the nature of reality, then you are free and blissful. Then you can become a powerful co-creator with the divine of a world that works for everyone, where you can effectively contribute to building a new earth based on a higher level of consciousness – free of ego.