Chogyam Tungpa Rinpoche was asked by a student, “Why do you think that people are so protective of their egos? Why is it so hard to let go of one’s ego?”. He answered, “People are afraid of the emptiness of space, or the absence of company, the absence of a shadow. It could be a terrifying experience to have no one to relate to, nothing to relate with. The idea of it can be extremely frightening, though not the real experience. It is generally a fear of space, a fear that we will not be able to anchor ourselves to any solid ground, that we will lose our identity as a fixed and solid and definite thing”.
When we think about one of our longest ever relationships, it’s with our ego. Our constant companion, from the beginning until now. Always nagging away, with lots of opinions, and at times an onslaught of information. When we look at it like this, there’s no wonder we cling on so fiercely to our ego.
Additionally, the ego isn’t all bad, it receives such a terrible rap most of the time, but our ego’s can inspire us, drive us and help us achieve great things. It’s not something to be tamed but something to be understood and engaged with to a lesser degree than our hearts. Our ego is not necessarily the enemy, and even if we view it as such, if we take the advice of Sun Tzu, the warrior who wrote The Art Of War, knowing one’s enemy is paramount to success. So how can we better understand our enemy, in order to not continue the same patterns we dislike so intensely.
With these two points in mind, what would our world seem like with our ego’s volume turned down a little? How can we better understand when we are working with your ego, or are simply drowning it? Some things to ponder…
Sent with love,