Marry Yourself and Divorce Your Ego…
Ego. “The part of the mind that mediates between the conscious and the unconscious and is responsible for reality testing and a sense of personal identity” – Webster’s Dictionary. “Reality testing and a sense of personal identity.” Inherently this definition is flawed because it suggests that reality is less of a creation and personal identity is measured with outside influence. In authentic truth, we create our own reality and personal identity should be measured from within. However, we all tend to be captive to our egos and we take great time in cultivating it.
As a practical example, outside of protecting one’s self, what other need is there to have a physical altercation? So why do people fight? Because you took my parking space? Because you spoke to me the wrong way? Because you don’t agree with my point of view? Therefore we must by all means “defend” our position. The ego is what says “you must physically pay for taking my parking space.” The ego says, “I will not be ‘disrespected’ by anyone therefore I must ‘defend’ my position!” Or, “I will physically harm you because we have differing views.” All the while, the extra walk in the parking lot is not life-threatening, the tone of how someone speaks doesn’t physically harm us and God has given every human a point of view and they may differ.
Ego tends to rule over lives. Ego separates, delineates and segregates. Ego creates a sense of “reality” that motivates action that has the ability and power to take you out of alignment and into chaos for the sake of ego. Ego is concerned only with itself. Ego has a low self-esteem and is deathly afraid of being exposed. Ego has the ability to incarcerate the mind.
We do many things daily that reflect the power our egos have over our lives. Everyone wants to be heard, recognized, acknowledged or praised. And there is nothing “wrong,” in the context of whatever is ‘right’ or wrong,’ with wanting to feel those emotions. What should concern us is when we have a need to have those feelings to define our self-worth. This is how the ego functions. It functions off the false insecurities it has created and you have allowed to reside in the hallows of your mind.
One of the ways to counter the effects of ego is through enlightenment. Enlightenment is self-awareness. It is unrestricted at the most fundamental level. It is free of judgment. It is open and expectant of all possibilities. It is love. Ego restricts and restrains by constantly having to prove itself worthy of your soul’s attention. When not enough attention is given, ego creates fear, doubt, worry and anxiety which we give our attention to in order to reassure the ego’s existence. So we must first understand that our egos do not make our authentic being. Our authentic being is free of egotistic control.
I always admire great actors and their art. People like Anthony Hopkins, Sydney Poitier, Robert De Niro, Cicely Tyson and many more. They become the people they are portraying in their art. But that’s not who they truly are. Those are roles they play. Such is the role of ego. Imagine yourself as a great actor being able to truly immerse yourself in an acting role. You don’t have to look very far because this is what we do daily. We play a different “role” every time we leave home and go to our places of employment. We play a different role when we go to social events with our friends. We play another role when we go to church or to the supermarket or to our kids’ soccer games. This isn’t to say we are not being our true authentic selves, however, we begin to think that the other things around us actually make us who we are. The influences of “things, circumstances and status” tend to become the things our egos measure and label as success or failure. We become lost and confused with what is true reality and then our egos begin to define our lives. We start to depend on our ego to define our “role” in everyday life.
Imagine if Arnold Schwarzenegger thought he was truly The Terminator walking around speaking like a robot and destroying things in the name of saving us all from an apocalyptic world. It’s just as ridiculous a notion to think we are defined by the size of our home, the cost of our car, the position at our job or our status in our community. But the ego keeps us confused. The ego plays as cataracts over the eyes of your soul, distorting your view of authentic truth and reality. Your true authentic being is created in God’s image and is empowered to create. This power isn’t far off or mythical but operates in the natural order of all things. We must learn not to depend on ego to define our being but let our being be the authentic truth.
Deepak Chopra said, “the core of my soul is the ultimate reality.” The core of your soul is full of peace, harmony and love. It is who you truly are. It does not put on any fanfare, longing for the attention of others. It is humble and confident within itself. It knows no limitations or boundaries, therefore it knows nothing of selfishness. It is love. It is you. Know yourself and live in your true existence. Strive to be perpetually aware of your authentic being and your true identity. This week is all about remembering who you are and increasing your awareness. Understanding your being allows you to direct and command the ego as opposed to your authentic existence being defined by the ego. Spend intimate time with your authentic self. Don’t court your ego when you can be married to the authentic you.