It is a well-established fact that the biggest impediment in the way of one’s peace, happiness and enlightenment is “EGO”.
A person’s ego causes him/her to be regretful in life, distances friendship and attracts enmity, puts person into depression, causes unnecessary grief, does not let the person progress easily in any field. Moreover, ego becomes a serious obstacle in one’s spiritual progress.
Hence it is of utmost importance that we consciously try and get rid of any ego that we might possess, so that we can progress spiritually. Complete reduction of ego, of all forms, will eventually lead to enlightenment —– which I the single-most purpose of our existence.
First, we need to understand what is “ego” and then reduce it so as to achieve eternal peace, happiness and enlightenment.
“EGO” can be broadly classified into 3 categories : ** Sthool Ahankaara or “gross ego” : People who are egoistic of material things like wealth, beauty, status, fame and progress possess this kind of ego. ** Sukshma Ahankaara or “subtle ego” : People who are egoistic of ‘subtle things like experience, age, devotion and knowledge possess this type of ego. It is astonishing to see that some people are egoistic about their “bhakti” towards God too. ** Shudh Ahankaara or “pure ego” : This is the state of enlightenment, because we establish ourselves in the pure consciousness, which possesses a pure ego of its existence. And we become one with this pure ego and relieve ourselves from the “birth cycle”.
The next step is to realise whether we are being egoistic or not. Few indications that help us realise whether we possess any ego are : ** Whether we judge people or look down upon them for no fault of theirs. For example, we look at a beggar and laugh at his hardship or we think other people are stupid. ** Whether we start getting irritated at small things and make an issue out of it. For example, if something is not done as per our idea or we try and find fault with others.
Once we are aware of the above two steps, we should consciously try and reduce the level of our ego. One of the ways to do so, is slowly establish oneself in the third and the most important form of ego — PURE EGO. Slowly, you should associate everything, everyone as an extension of your existence. By doing this you will, eventually, stop looking down on anyone because, indirectly, you will be looking down upon yourself. The “PURE EGO” stage is nothing but the “ultimate stage of enlightenment.”
——- Sadguru Rameshji