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  #1  
Old 27-09-2017, 07:04 AM
youngnostic youngnostic is offline
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Is it possible to not have an ego?

the reason why I ask is because I don't have anything in me that I can identify as an 'ego' which leads me to question: what if I don't have an ego?
Now I know what you might be thinking: I've got blindspots but still have an ego.
But check this: I've been on an introspective spiritual contemplative path of working out my own psychology for the past 14 years. And there have been times, in fact for the majority of that time span, where I was convinced I had an ego and it was blocking me from having fulfilled relationships. I've spent years trying to annihilate my so-called ego and have even gotten to the point where I believed I've succeeded at freeing both my brain's hemispheres of the so-called 'ego' film that leads me to act selfishly or judge the outside phenomena instead of simply witnessing it.
I didn't know where else to go with this question, but as it stands, I currently do not see an 'ego' in me. I've studied neo-advaita which says we have to drop the notion of a personal self or an I and I understood what they were trying to say, that is, I realized my self was an illusion. I've even prior that understood that the word I does not mean self and it felt like my 'I' died. So I've gone through the motions, perhaps excessively to get to the bottom of this ego thing where I did everything I could to make sure I'm not responsible for treating others ****tily and it's not because I have some kind of 'ego' that is my achilles heel. I've gone through the motions of trying to understand self and what I is and realized that after understanding that the 'self' is an illusion that I just have to live and see what unfolds next and what unfolded was the inability to discern a personal 'ego' where I literally walk down the street or have a cigarette and try to think to myself: what is this 'ego' that everyone is talking about and how is it found in me, and realize that I cannot pin point an ego.
Not much is different because we're a product of our environment but I've studied different teachings that all related to the ego and none of them describe me when they describe their epic ego mindsets. I don't fall any category of having an 'ego' based on the various teachings I've encountered. So please enlighten me on why it's not possible to not have an 'ego' and what characteristics this ego has so that I can tell you if I find them in me...
I know at this point it sounds like I'm trying to boast and say that I'm some how better than someone else. But that's the whole thing: I'm not. The ego never existed. So if you're like me a couple of years ago trying to understand the personal pronoun "I" or battling some invisible 'ego' try to picture yourself in my position: This imaginary 'ego' never existed.
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Old 27-09-2017, 09:00 AM
Shivani Devi Shivani Devi is offline
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Greetings.

I'm not sure if it's possible not to have any ego full-time as it were, or to 'lose it' entirely.

It is possible to choose to identify/associate with ego or not, according to circumstance and it's also possible to be a 'master' over it, rather than letting it control/decide our actions.

I have likened it to a player in a ball game, where a conscious choice exists to have the player on the field during the game, or to bench it and allow it to observe the action from the sidelines.

I have found that often, it is needed in the material world for our very survival, but beyond that, it just becomes an indulgence, a luxury.

One could say that in reference to the bliss of Brahman (Satchitananda), everything else about you is ego...I am using my ego to type up this reply to you, as you have done so in also making the opening post, if mind/manas is also equatable with ego.

According to Advaita Vedanta, anything that is 'not this' must be 'that', so anything that is not ego must be Brahman, but saying it, knowing it and directly experiencing it are three different things.

It is possible for me to lose my ego totally, but then I/ego would not be able to type on this forum.

It is also possible to say "Shivoham" or "Aham Brahmasmi" but who/what is saying that? why...it's still the ego, of course. lol

Ego, in the general sense means our notion of self as it relates to everything around us...it is our mind and our feelings working together to a constructive or detrimental purpose and I don't think anybody will ever be free from that totally; maybe if they perform karma yoga and say they are not the 'do-er' or the 'think-er' or the 'type-er', but then what is? It is still the ego, but a much higher aspect of it.

We can say 'neti neti' until we can say that no more, but then what? our ego dissolves in Brahman, our kundalini flies out of our sahasrara chakra and we become lost in bliss...but, even the enlightened sage must come back down into the throat chakra, where the ego resides to interact with whatever is surrounding them at the time.
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Old 27-09-2017, 09:11 AM
youngnostic youngnostic is offline
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So ego resides in the throat chakra?
I'm simply trying to understand what ego is and how I can identify it in me.
It seems that everyone is running around saying "ego, ego" but no one knows exactly what it is, or has vague understandings of it based on experience and things they heard/read from psychology and spiritual masters.
The problem is, in my current experience, I'm simply unable to pinpoint an ego in me... maybe it's a blind spot on my behalf and I know there would be those who would claim it is, but I'm simply generating a conversation trying to share ideas so we can collectively understand what ego is and if it's possible to not have one. I'm even willing, after a lengthy chat that didn't seem so friendly from those whom I was questioning about the same topic, to put this whole discussion to rest since talks of ego tend to generate negative reactions from others especially when there is someone claiming they don't have one.
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Old 27-09-2017, 09:26 AM
youngnostic youngnostic is offline
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I guess what I should've reiterated was what I understand 'ego' to mean and most people generally mean when they refer to themselves having an ego: a part of themselves that's not real or illusory i.e. Here's my real self, my egoless self, and here's another box next to it, this ego, that's not me, but is my achilles heel... and I don't see myself as that... I take myself to be a complete person, a human, with natural flaws as part of our evolution on this planet but I don't see those flawed characteristics as being ego, simply being unevolved chemical processes.
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Old 27-09-2017, 09:27 AM
Shivani Devi Shivani Devi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by youngnostic
So ego resides in the throat chakra?
I'm simply trying to understand what ego is and how I can identify it in me.
It seems that everyone is running around saying "ego, ego" but no one knows exactly what it is, or has vague understandings of it based on experience and things they heard/read from psychology and spiritual masters.
The problem is, in my current experience, I'm simply unable to pinpoint an ego in me... maybe it's a blind spot on my behalf and I know there would be those who would claim it is, but I'm simply generating a conversation trying to share ideas so we can collectively understand what ego is and if it's possible to not have one. I'm even willing, after a lengthy chat that didn't seem so friendly from those whom I was questioning about the same topic, to put this whole discussion to rest since talks of ego tend to generate negative reactions from others especially when there is someone claiming they don't have one.
The centre of communication and association (ego) resides in the throat chakra for one who is pure. For one who is not, ego resides in the solar plexus chakra.

If you are going by Advaita Vedanta, your mind is also ego, so to say you have no ego means you have transcended your whole awareness of self (at any aspect of it).

I'm not saying you have an ego or not, as that is something I wouldn't know, however, what is trying to pinpoint an ego in you and cannot find one?

Ego can mean a glorified or aggrandized notion of self, OR acting from the self in relation to everything else...putting it through a perceptual filter of "This is ME and that is THAT...and what I am, interacts with what that is in such a way as to define or delimit what I am in relation to it".

...and you have no idea how difficult it is for me to try and explain all this.

Some may get to the stage where they have lost the whole ego-centric viewpoint, but it doesn't mean they have totally lost the ego. It means existing outside the awareness, even though the awareness remains.

Losing the ego can be temporary as well, like when one is engaged in a very pleasurable activity and they are not aware they are doing it, but that is very brief...like being lost in the plot of a movie....but when the movie is over, the ego comes back and goes 'did you enjoy that?'
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Old 27-09-2017, 09:53 AM
Shivani Devi Shivani Devi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by youngnostic
I guess what I should've reiterated was what I understand 'ego' to mean and most people generally mean when they refer to themselves having an ego: a part of themselves that's not real or illusory i.e. Here's my real self, my egoless self, and here's another box next to it, this ego, that's not me, but is my achilles heel... and I don't see myself as that... I take myself to be a complete person, a human, with natural flaws as part of our evolution on this planet but I don't see those flawed characteristics as being ego, simply being unevolved chemical processes.
My philosophical brain just kicked into gear.

So, you are saying that which is non-absolute is absolute, because nothing can exist apart from the absolute....i.e. Maya is Brahman?

Of course it is, but Brahman still remains as Brahman irrespective of Maya, so that which is 'not ego' will still exist as being 'not ego' irrespective of ego, even though it is ego. lol

It's sort of like people worshiping God, knowing full well they are God, so what are they worshiping?

When those 'chemical processes' fully evolve, ego will still be ego - but then again, if you have the direct realisation that ego = Brahman, ego won't exist anymore, as that which is 'beyond ego' will simply lose the whole self-association with the concept of an egoic principle, whether you perceive it or not.

Am I going too deep for you?
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Old 27-09-2017, 09:58 AM
youngnostic youngnostic is offline
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I guess it's a very dubious concept since the ego is not something physical. Giving labels to immaterial things can be tricky, especially this whole 'ego' talk. Spirituality as profound as I believe it can be, and perhaps there are Buddhas out there that can break it into a science despite our inability to sense the immaterial but then again who's to say they're not just advanced Schizophrenics spreading their world view upon others who have not yet tapped into the immaterial for themselves and then subjectively percieved it in a much different way than the socalled Enlightened Buddhas. It's all very relative. I mourn the fact that we're still so far from understanding ourselves and our biggest tool for dealing with that is denial, which is why I came on here to try to understand for myself whether or not the way I view things is absolute... I still hold to the fact that we're all still to ignorant and delve into things beyond our conception for solace and comfort and maybe some who have lived in the past have gotten glimpses of things and called them 'ego' or 'spirit' or w/e but these meanings changed with time since the people themselves have surely changed and like you said, "lost their ego" one time and then gained a heavier veil perhaps. Anyhow, I'm gonna stick around for this thread to consummate but I had a bad experience talking about this in another one, not with you Necro, since I am enjoying your heart warming remarks, but with others and a part of me is afraid this could happen here as well. People simply don't understand your motive for bringing things to the light and question your authenticity and aren't willing to extend the benefit of the doubt and immediately assume where you're coming from and accuse you of doing the same. This hasn't happened here and I am thankful. But it has happened in another place where I even dared to bring up the notion that I might not have an ego but have had my share of experiences of trying to wrap my mind around what ego is and even spent years trying to annihilate my illusory ego and when it came down to it, I never fully understood what ego was, so I'm just giving up at this point and willing to admit that it is simply a lack of understanding on my part, yet I am still eager to learn, somehow, perhaps through some mystical experience of what is actually what, so thanks for participating in this convo Necro, and anyone else who feels to share. Namaskar.
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Old 27-09-2017, 10:31 AM
Shivani Devi Shivani Devi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by youngnostic
I guess it's a very dubious concept since the ego is not something physical. Giving labels to immaterial things can be tricky, especially this whole 'ego' talk. Spirituality as profound as I believe it can be, and perhaps there are Buddhas out there that can break it into a science despite our inability to sense the immaterial but then again who's to say they're not just advanced Schizophrenics spreading their world view upon others who have not yet tapped into the immaterial for themselves and then subjectively percieved it in a much different way than the socalled Enlightened Buddhas. It's all very relative. I mourn the fact that we're still so far from understanding ourselves and our biggest tool for dealing with that is denial, which is why I came on here to try to understand for myself whether or not the way I view things is absolute... I still hold to the fact that we're all still to ignorant and delve into things beyond our conception for solace and comfort and maybe some who have lived in the past have gotten glimpses of things and called them 'ego' or 'spirit' or w/e but these meanings changed with time since the people themselves have surely changed and like you said, "lost their ego" one time and then gained a heavier veil perhaps. Anyhow, I'm gonna stick around for this thread to consummate but I had a bad experience talking about this in another one, not with you Necro, since I am enjoying your heart warming remarks, but with others and a part of me is afraid this could happen here as well. People simply don't understand your motive for bringing things to the light and question your authenticity and aren't willing to extend the benefit of the doubt and immediately assume where you're coming from and accuse you of doing the same. This hasn't happened here and I am thankful. But it has happened in another place where I even dared to bring up the notion that I might not have an ego but have had my share of experiences of trying to wrap my mind around what ego is and even spent years trying to annihilate my illusory ego and when it came down to it, I never fully understood what ego was, so I'm just giving up at this point and willing to admit that it is simply a lack of understanding on my part, yet I am still eager to learn, somehow, perhaps through some mystical experience of what is actually what, so thanks for participating in this convo Necro, and anyone else who feels to share. Namaskar.
Namaskar.

You have seen my whole "Is being yourself, Selfish?' thread and I guess the comments I have made here are on the back of that.

People are questioning my authenticity all the time, but does that really matter in the whole scheme of things?

If one has had that 'mystical experience' it's something that is totally subjective and will have happened despite the whole universe stating to the contrary.

Brahman is also something that never changes, despite everything else changing and Nirvana is Nirvana despite it happening 5,000 years ago or now because time just doesn't exist in that state.

In actual fact, the true test of whether you have had that experience or not, is to be able to just laugh it all off, no matter who says what in regards. They may say you are in 'denial' but only you know that, but then they will say 'one who is in denial wouldn't know because that is what denial IS'.

In the end, the bliss just speaks for itself...and if one is happy, peaceful, content...that's all there is to it.

Still, it takes a while to establish oneself within it, just like when you disconnect the power supply from a fan, the blades will still keep on spinning round and round for a while before they stop.

Then, we are just burning through samskaras and karmas without attachment.

So, others may say I am a 'schizophrenic' or whatever you said, but do they hold an advanced degree in psychiatry? I doubt it.

I'm also still learning and one day, I will just go into meditation and never come back out of it and that will be that.

I also await other replies on your thread and I will hold back and give others the opportunity of replying now...we both may learn something.
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Old 27-09-2017, 11:08 AM
youngnostic youngnostic is offline
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Going into meditation and not coming back sounds compelling.
You make me more interested in Hinduism.
I wish I could get a taste of it myself, but on my part what I tried to do through the years is cultivate honesty of mind as a naturally born philosopher and having studied the Plato's Cave analogy can only hope to one day be that philosopher who leaves the cave and gets to find out what's what for myself and live a contented life of Understanding reality from both ends. Until that happens I don't see how I can personally know what's anything no matter how inquisitive I become. And having said that I'm gonna go practice some 'neti neti' to see if that leads to anywhere :P
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Old 27-09-2017, 06:29 PM
dream jo dream jo is offline
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dnt no.........................................
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