Consider that no wave exists by itself or for itself, that all waves are inescapably part of the visible ocean. In the same way no individual life can separate itself from all life but is always a part of it in some way or another. Yet this idea of separateness is held by millions. ‘That’ idea is perpetuated by the ego.
We came to this earth to understand ourselves bit by bit. The ego is not to be denied but to be accepted and its hold destroyed. It must emerge, grow, enslave and finally be enslaved. This is the paradox of human life--he has to crush the ego's desires and yet permit its fullness to unfold. He has to lose his ego-nature but not his ego-will.
It is the ego which reincarnates--not the higher self but we think this because we think the ego is our real self.
Whoever wants the "I" to yield up its mysterious and tremendous secret must stop it from looking perpetually in the mirror, must stop the little ego's fascination with itself.
The "I" which says "I think so and so", "I feel so and so" or "I do so and so" is the "I" of the personal ego. All our movements occur within the "I". All our decisions and judgments, inner experiences and intellectual perceptions are the product of the ego.
If you wish to be in harmony with the world, to work with it and not force yourself against it, you must stop imposing the ego-your ego-upon it.
Who is the seeker? It is the ego. And who undergoes the experiences and develops all the ideas upon it? It is also the ego. Let us not denigrate it therefore: it has its place and serves in its place.
If we could pin down this "I"-ness which is behind all we think and do, if we could part it from thoughts feelings and the physical body we would find it to be rooted in and linked with the Higher Power behind the whole world.
The ego is spoken of here as a separate identity but in FACT the "I" cannot be separated from it's thoughts since it is composed of them and them alone. The ego in short is only an idea, a trick that the mind plays on itself. There is no real ego but only a quick succession of thoughts which constitutes the "I" process. In this way does it exist, as a thought? The ego-thought is behind every activity of man.
If the ego can keep your energies entangled in its physical doings or your time absorbed in developing its occult powers it will then be able to keep you from spending time with your higher power and thus preserve its own existence.
Let a man examine himself and see how the ego leads the whole troop of other faculties or hides among them for refuge, asserts itself or deludes him. It perpetuates its hold thru grandiose vanity, parade its magnified virtues, make him sticky with smugness; and in humility it will over-emphasize his faults and make him self-centered and even morbid. It can pose as a humble pupil today but as a pontifical master tomorrow. The ego is just as powerful whether condoned or condemned for in both cases it keeps a man engaged in self-centeredness. It is perfectly capable of making all sorts of truces and compromises-moral ones with its conscience, logical ones with its intellect and spiritual ones with its aspirations. Few arrive where they set out to go because few can get past the ego's tricks. Collecting pictures of oneself is one small example of the ego at work continuing to perpetuate itself. The ego is the one concerned with the body, its looks, its intelligence etc. - for when heart speaks to heart nothing else matters, nor is needed.
There are 2 identities to man--the unreal, the ego--and the real, the stillness in the void of the heart.
The ego has many powerful defenses, mostly emotional ones to which it turns to instantly. When it sees a danger to its existence it creates fears, invents false hopes, and exaggerates difficulties. When hurt it exhibits pride. The ego's cunning endeavors persuade him to ascribe his irritating troubles to anything but the correct one and to anyone but the correct one--himself. If he is willing to look for them a man will find the hidden workings of the ego in the most unsuspected corners, even in the very midst of his loftiest aspirations. In the very act of lauding God or Spirit, the ego lauds and praises itself-such is the cunning duplicity with which it leads a man into thinking he is being very spiritual or being very pious.
His first work is to find where the "I" begins--his second is to find where it ends and is no more.
The ego can effect tremendous achievements in the worldly life but it can do nothing in the domain of spiritual life… Here its best achievements are to silence itself and learn to be still, for in the ego's silence will be whispered the revelation we await. Every time he resists the impulse to angry action or bitter scolding he resists the ego. He will need strength to stand apart from the crowd, strength to resist the world's flatteries and reject its luxuries. You will be saved, not by a man's suffering on a wooden cross 2 thousand years ago, but by your own suffering as your ego voluntarily crucifies itself today.
Withdrawal from the senses is hard, withdrawal from thoughts harder but withdrawal from the ego is hardest. He must learn to transcend his own ego yet demand his place and keep his balance in the world; to transcend his family's egoism and yet respect their dues and rights.
My dear Ego: "It is obvious that in this world I cannot live without you. Your presence is so overwhelming, fills every instinct, thought, feeling and action. But it is obvious that I cannot live with you either. The time has come to adjust our relationship. So I have one request to make of you. "Please get out of my way!"
When a man can forgive God all the anguish of his past calamities and when he can forgive all men and women for the wrongs they have done him, he will come to inward peace. For this is what the ego cannot do.
These are just a few excerpts from the books which I study- may you find solace, comfort and knowledge in reading them.