Since I was very young I’ve been passionately interested in personal development – my own and others. Recent years that curiosity has also turned into spiritual development.
To change your behavior or your thoughts and believes are not that easy, as you might have noticed. To give us a clue on how to easier reach the realms of harmony and an open mind almost every respectable author and modern guru, like Eckhart Tolle, Wayne D. Dyer or Deepak Chopra, tells us that we have to fight and get rid of our Ego.
How can you get rid of your Ego?! It’s there all the time, telling me who I am in comparison and relation to all the other people and their egos. Sometimes my Ego tells me that I am great and sometimes I feel lousy and the Ego tells me that it’s somebody else’s fault. No matter what it says, it’s always there. And I get all stressed and confused about how I should do to let it go. I can’t meditate all day! And intuitively it doesn’t feel good to fight against a part of myself. I always prefer to work towards something instead of against something else. Like working for peace instead of fighting against war. Much more positive!
But then I read Anita Moorjani’s last book “What if This is Heaven?” and she has a completely different view on the Ego. She says that if we could really love ourselves without worrying about what others might think that can’t be a bad thing. On the contrary – it would be very good if everybody loved themselves! The problem is that our awareness of us being a part of and connected to everything and everyone else is not big enough. She gives us a metaphor: Pretend that every child is born with two volume knobs – one for Ego and one for Awareness. In the beginning they are both set to level 10. So the baby loves him- or herself completely (strong Ego) and is at the same time not aware of any separation from mom and dad, the butterfly or the soft Teddybear (high Awareness). But as time goes, the child is taught to be more actively part of this reality and to separate him- or herself from others and learning what is mine and what is yours. So the Awareness knob is constantly being turned down to a lower and lower level. But the Ego knob is still on 10!
This results in selfish, worried Egos.
What’s new in this perspective is that you don’t have to focus on your Ego and getting rid of that anymore! Instead you can focus so much more on being aware of how everything is connected. Think of yourself and your fellow humans as water drops in a big ocean. We are all with an Ego each, but being connected is what makes us an ocean. Both religions and modern science try to tell us this, in different versions. I don’t say that it’s much easier than getting rid of the Ego, but to me it feels much more progressive, fascinating and positive!