I have severe dislike for the word ‘ego’. To the point that my skin prickles a little at the mention. In fact, it goes deep. I fucking hate it! OK, so maybe it’s not actually the word itself. It’s really just the way it is referred to and bandied around, mostly in spiritual circles.
My deep disdain for ego was possibly born from Annie, my mum, who has paved the way for me on this path and been on a pretty extensive spiritual investigation and journey since the Harmonic Convergence in 1987. She’s seen a lot in her time, and bless her, loved to spout her latest and greatest at everyone around her. Including me. So once she got her clutches on that new shiny word ‘ego’ it was thrown at me in discussions, arguments or as insults about a gazillion times between then and now. Let’s be honest, it was never going to be on a positive note was it? Otherwise it wouldn’t be the ‘dreaded ego’.
Ego is often referred to as ones ‘personal ego’ or personality self. Often viewed in spiritual circles as a force inside you that takes over with its illusory and cunning behaviour. With spiritual practise being the only thing to do to diminish it, in whatever mode is the flavour of the month. Many people in the spiritual community have been perpetuating this view for a long time, and there is tonnes of it all over the internet, for example Wayne Dyer quoting Sogyal Rinpoche “Two people have been living in you all of your life. One is the ego, garrulous, demanding, hysterical, calculating; the other is the hidden spiritual being, whose still voice of wisdom you have only rarely heard or attended to.” I love Wayne, and have complete admiration and respect for the body of work he contributed here on the planet, but this type of view has never sat well with me.
Ego is one of those terms that I feel has been overused, misinterpreted and manipulated over time to the point that it has become outdated spiritual clap trap and, in my opinion, one of the biggest red herrings there is. First of all it’s another form of separation conditioning. When you are trying to ‘get rid of’ or battle something inside yourself you are creating discordant energy, and therefore further away from acknowledging and embracing the wholeness of who you truly are. Discordant energy is the opposite of peace, flow and alignment which is where we want to be. As they say, where your attention goes, the energy flows. Which brings me to my second point in that it promotes the view that there is ‘something wrong with us’, or that we are in need of fixing. The nature of aligning with this view of being broken takes power, or our own energy away from us as the individual and our perfection as a divine being. These kind of viewpoints lock you out of evolving consciousness, keeping you constantly tied to these versions of self.
Ego has had a bad rap. When really, it’s just a misunderstood aspect of self. Dissing your own ego and trying to get rid of it is akin to how doctors think they should whip your tonsils out at the first sign of infection. In actual fact, your tonsils are a vital part of your immune system and its ‘first response’. An alarm system to say that something is not right. It is trying to communicate with you that something needs to be looked at and addressed to bring you back into a state of homeostasis. Yes, sometimes even the best of us can act out, or react on a particularly bad day – but it’s generally when we are out of alignment within ourselves. Being super aware in our real time feed throughout the day and adjusting course based on what we are feeling and experiencing, is critical in managing all aspects of our self and expanding into the full potential of what we can be. In the words of Matt Kahn “It’s just this facade that dissolves as you love yourself”.