Understanding the Spiritual Ego
The sense and context of self then shifted to a spiritual self that still incorporated the mind but now it was ‘spiritual’. In other words it was the notion of being a human being having a spiritual experience rather than the truth of being a spiritual being having a human experience. At this point however the study of spirituality suddenly held more answers and seemed to be the source of eternal fulfillment and happiness. It became obvious that no matter how tamed and mastered the mind is, it is ultimately still limited and based in form and therefore transient by nature, just like the body. With this realization the personal self then shifted to a more spiritual yet still intellectual investment. This can be thought of as the spiritual ego, for it is not a complete shift into true radical spiritual reality quite yet.
The personal self was still attached to form but now it was seeking to at least know about spiritual reality rather than focusing solely on the physical and intellectual. This brought with it new found hope, fulfillment, and happiness that seemed to go beyond the world’s limitations. Accordingly, happiness at this point became even more constant and the sense of satisfaction stretched beyond the body’s death as an eternal, spiritual reality became invested in. Everything then became about ‘knowing’ as much spiritual Truth as possible out of the joy it would inevitably bring. Study of all things spiritual became constant since spirituality seemed to hold all the answers and be the source of happiness that was now eternal in scale. Concordantly, nothing else became of interest to me at this point because everything else was known to be limited and irrelevant within an eternal perspective. Spiritual reality is by its nature all encompassing and infinite. There was also a desire to make sure and purge all ‘sin’ or any guilt of past behaviors due to now accepting eternal accountability and consequence.
However, the ego self is still missing the point for it now associates itself with the body, mind, and now spirit as all itself (still based in duality). So although there is a new awareness of spiritual reality it has simply been added to the mind and body rather than become the complete and total reality. In other words, the personal self now incorporates spirituality while also subtly still being attached to the mind and body as that which ‘knows about’ spirituality. This is representative of the spiritual ego or spiritual sense of self as that which knows about spirituality and is therefore above others who don’t know or implies that one has the secret pleasure of just ‘knowing’ spiritual information. Thus the personal self’s attachment and investment becomes spiritual knowledge that seems to be the deliverer from all suffering and loss. The rate of happiness at this point was extremely high and practically constant because the personal self knows that its progress at this point is eternal and therefore infinitely rewarding by its self-fulfilling nature. Therefore its happiness is based in spirituality although still operating under the belief of self as a separate mind/body/spirit that is becoming increasingly Self-aware. This stage actually represents some of the most challenging levels of ego attachment to transcend because it seems to officially ‘know it all’. However, such a claim can only be out of arrogance and naiveté. In fact to claim to ‘know’ anything is an illusion of the mind for one can only ‘know’ that which one experientially ‘is’ at which point the ‘knower’ and the ‘known’ are one and the same. Note that for example, ‘enlightenment’ can only be reported not claimed, there is no ‘one’ left to do the claiming.
The Temptation of ‘Co-Creation’
The absolute peak of the spiritual ego occurred when I learned through investigation into quantum physics, metaphysics, occult knowledge, psychology, cosmology, and the study of consciousness that I have the ability to influence manifestation of reality. Thus, the personal self at this point reaches its absolute peak of arrogance as the complete replacement of Divinity as a ‘co-creator’ or equal with Divinity. In other words, the mind sought to replace God as the source of life but now the personal self as the spiritual ego accepts its Divine Nature and therefore claims all power of Divinity for itself. The reason why the ego is able to do so without seeming completely erroneous is that science can clearly show us that we are all fundamentally one. In other words, science is now able to prove Divinity as the infinite Unity of All That Is of which we are a part of and equally one with, it is only our acceptance of such a radical truth that is necessary. However, the issue that arises is that the spiritual ego then realizes it must literally be an extension of Divinity as some sort of ‘co-creator’. Thus, the personal self literally claims that it is Divinity and therefore able to manifest reality as it so chooses through the power of conscious intentionality (Law of Attraction).
Seeing Through the Fallacy
The reason why this level of awareness as the personal self becomes incredibly hard to detect and transcend is because consciousness does in fact impact the collective manifestation of Consciousness. This is readily observed with the discovery of the Heisenberg principle and consciousness’ ability to impact reality simply by observation (collapse of the wave function). Thus this power of conscious manifestation becomes quite addicting and recognition of dream like synchronicity becomes extremely prevalent. Happiness at this point became incredibly constant as one seems to be the absolute master of the universe and able to conjure the reality desired. Thus I became extremely satisfied and every moment of life seemed to be a perfect unfoldment of my intentions. All of life was seen to be a clear reflection of my conscious intentions and therefore the state was the height of the intellectual and spiritual ego as ‘master of the universe.’
The Power of Love
At this point we realize that it is the essence of love that is the infinite creative power of the universe and thus we become constantly aligned with lovingness and eventually enter the realms of unconditional love in order to perfect the state. These realms of love and happiness are infinitely fulfilling since the mind has been tamed at this point to be used as a conscious tool for creating one’s perspective of reality. The spiritual will is able to choose how to feel/react in absolutely every moment through the awareness of an expanded context and thus happiness seems to be completely under one’s control beyond all external circumstances. This energy of lovingness is then what consciousness uses to align and manifest its reality, which as stated before is incredibly ‘real’ and all life becomes synchronistic in nature. All of life is seen to unfold perfectly and beautifully and there is an extreme cessation of fear due to one’s realization of conscious power and responsibility for one’s life experience.
The Spiritual Ego’s Arrogance and Cunning
The spiritual ego believes that with its newfound abilities it can do anything: teleport, fly, manifest objects, create worlds, you name it; it is only a matter of belief. The arrogance and pride is absolutely astounding as essentially the personal self is claiming to be God as a personal separate sense of self. The primary fallacy of this level of awareness is that there is a personal self at all along with all notions of duality or causality. We are in fact Divinity; the personal self will however, is the complete illusion. This is the cunning temptation at this stage because the awareness of unity with Divinity is indeed radical truth, however the personal ego self is trying to survive into eternity by misunderstanding and distorting this truth.
The overall experience of this ‘version’ of the ego self is immersed in the energy of love since love became clear to be the most powerful creative power. Thus the self is immersed in love and happiness at this point but it is a self-love that is based in pleasing oneself as a personal self even if it is being shared with ‘others’. In other words, duality still persists. Furthermore, all studies at the time coming from the teachings of the currently numerous ‘gurus’ convey the message that it is good to love oneself and glorify the self, for one is a ‘co-creator’ with Divinity. It is taught that we are Divinity and therefore should infinitely love ourself/the personal self, as a Divine Creator of reality. The reason why this is such a powerful temptation is because it’s disguised incredibly subtly and cleverly as profound Truth.
As with all temptations of the ego self, especially the temptations at the higher levels of awareness, there is usually profound Truth embedded within the temptation of duality. In this particular case, as mentioned before, the Truth is that one is Divinity; the fallacy however is claiming to be a ‘co-creator’ with Divinity or a separate ‘co-‘ anything, which by it’s very nature implies duality. (Within radical Nonduality there is no ‘co’ possible) The personal self believes that it is creating and manifesting reality based on consciousness’ intentions and energetic alignment which all seems to be subjectively true as well as spiritually sound. Yet it cannot be mentioned enough that the fallacy is within the notion of a personal, dualistic self to begin with.
Letting Go of Duality
To uncover this fallacy it was helpful to learn from quantum physics that in actuality the mind is given all its thoughts from energy fields within Consciousness and it is never actually arising from any ‘personal’ entity. In other words there is no personal, separate, independently existing self ‘thinking’ or ‘doing’ anything. Likewise, the body moves of its own in accordance with the mind, both of which are completely impersonal and run according to their inherent nature, spontaneous and involuntary. Analogously the heart beats itself and the lungs breathe themselves – with an expanded awareness all seemingly ‘voluntary’ actions or decisions are proceeding on their own just like the heartbeat.
Everything is being given as it arises from the field of consciousness and is transient, fleeting, impersonal, autonomous, and spontaneous. Life lives itself. Such a radical realization then sparked further intrigue into the nature of consciousness. For if it is consciousness that is giving the mind thoughts then what is giving consciousness its ability to exist? This caused for a more profound humility and an abandonment of the notion of a ‘co-creator’ for it becomes obvious that it is limiting and still dealing with the notion of control and resistance, like trying to make/force one’s cells multiply and fulfill their countless functions. Furthermore, extensive study of Dr. Hawkins’ writings and the Upanishads took place at this time that also replaced this fallacy with the Truth that all things are only being allowed and given by Divinity. Thus the limitations of the personal self was transcended again through radical humility and devotion to Absolute Truth and shifted into a new perspective as consciousness itself, the observer/witness of life. For in the absolute humility of knowing that one is not thinking or doing anything but rather all is unfolding of its own beyond personal control, self-inquiry stretches to new profound depths.
The personal self at this point releases its attachment to ‘control’ and whatever the personal self perceives itself to be ‘creating’ is actually only Divinity unfolding impersonally, spontaneously, and autonomously. The ego self is like a child thinking it’s creating light within a light bulb but it is actually the electricity itself that illuminates the light bulb, the child is only flipping the switch ‘on’. The child then misperceives itself as the ‘creator’ of light due to naiveté arising from notions of causality and duality, which is the core of the ‘co-creation’ fallacy. The ego self thinks it’s the electricity itself (Divine Power) instead of the child/pawn who is simply being given/provided with electricity that is wired to the light bulb. In other words, the personal self is ultimately limited by its vanity of perception and seen to be fallacious in nature due to its inability to surrender control/duality to Divinity. With this radical humility there then arises the realization that there is actually an even greater paradigm of awareness beyond the current level of duality as a personal self. Thus, the personal self becomes solely identified with the essence of consciousness or that which is aware of the mind/body, which is realized to be impersonal and nonattached. Therefore, the sense of self begins to realize the realms of the observer/witness of life, silent and serene.
Letting Go of Attachments to the Mind and Opinions
At this point the rate of happiness and satisfaction with life is almost entirely constant since by now there is extremely limited attachment to anything that is fleeting in nature, or in other words of the world of form (body/mind, thinking, feeling, or doing). The body and mind become increasingly seen as things one is aware of as ‘its’ rather than ‘me’ or ‘mine’. Thus slowly the body and mind become completely ignored or irrelevant in regards to specifically defining ‘who/what I am’. It was extremely helpful to laugh at the nature of the mind whenever it would try and seek control again as a personal self at this point. Simple tools were devised to help aid in the final process of letting go of attachment to the mind/spiritual ego as a personal self.
One example is since the mind was mostly silent by this point in development, each thought can be readily identified and easily observed, thus as each thought would arise, from the position of self-aware consciousness one would then add to the end of a thought ‘says the ego’. The point of this being to always remember the ego’s perspective is pointless, irrelevant, limited, unnecessary, and vain. This became a fun tool because it readily identified the mind for what it was, an illusion of the ego self as it tried to take control as the editor of reality. Another tool to surrender attachment to the mind was to just simply always surrender every thought back to Divinity such as ‘what will be, will be’ and not actually entertaining the thought. What’s supposed to happen will without doubt, question, accident, mistake, or coincidence unfold according to the most perfect love imaginable beyond possible ego control (the ego doesn’t actually exist so what control could it possibly have). To doubt this is to doubt Divinity’s perfection and ineffable splendor. Thus with each fear/thought being clearly identified as such there’d often be laughter at the ego’s attempts because this only further extremely weakens the attachment to it. All personal attachments as the limited ego can be incredibly weakened through its humiliation and being unperturbed by perceived loss.
These two particular approaches are extremely helpful because it is the complete opposite of what the ego self wants. It was extremely helpful to laugh at the nature of the personal self and have compassion for it rather than become frustrated with it. Remember, the ego is inherited as a part of being human, it is impersonal, and everyone’s ego operates essentially the same, so once we understand the ego’s tendencies and evolution we understand humanity’s struggles and can have compassion and love for others rather than resentment or guilt. Likewise, it is pointless to try and silence the mind or try and control it. The real power comes in simply withdrawing all attention and investment in it. Hence humiliation and ignoring it were the most effective because it absolutely withdraws all possible consideration of its vanities of belief and opinions.
Furthermore, whenever the mind would want to perceive a loss of some sort, or that things ‘should’ be different then they are, one could quickly realize all is exactly as it should be and there is no other possible way. In other words, what is, is and therefore there is no point in trying to fight or resist it. To deny what is, is the same as denying the entire universe, for every moment is the entire universe unfolding with utter perfection. Likewise, if something has already happened what is the point of struggling to change it now, it’s already past and is therefore completely irrelevant and no longer real. A large portion of power arises from radical humility and acceptance of the perfection of the universe. Not a single particle or hair is out of place, all is known, accounted for, and perfectly aligned in the sight of God.
The most powerful Truth that is useful in withdrawing investment into the mind and subsequently the body is realizing the Truth that the mind does not actually ‘think’ of its own. The mind is a tool/communicator used by consciousness and is given its thoughts, beliefs, values, opinions, and perceptions based on the level of conscious awareness. In other words, the mind actually ‘does’ nothing; it is only a receiver of consciousness and as such has no actual power in and of itself. The mind’s ability to ‘think’ is an illusion based on the perception of a personal self as the mind/thinker. Hence we invest and become attached to the mind because we think it’s who we really are. In other words we think the thoughts the mind is thinking are ‘me’ and ‘mine’. However, the thoughts themselves are just projections of a level of conscious awareness and are in no way personal to any self. All creations of life can be thought of as simply mouthpieces or puppets representing a particular theme of conscious awareness.
All thoughts unfold of their own and there is no ‘one’ thinking them. This has actually been scientifically proven repeatedly now and one need only study neuroscience, metaphysics, and consciousness research in order to intellectually comprehend the mind’s demise as ‘thinker’, which is rather comical and ironic. For science shows humanity clearly now that all is arising out of an infinite energy potential and that it is consciousness that then collapses the infinite potentiality into the manifestation that one perceives as reality. It is this type of knowledge that can become addicting if not approached with the proper Truth. For once one begins to study consciousness the personal self wants to claim the ability to manifest reality as a personal self capable of directing consciousness’ manifestation. However, as mentioned this can be bypassed by humbly surrendering to Divinity as that which allows consciousness to even be in the first place and thus the personal self as the sole controller of the mind/body begins to reach its final moments.
There is nothing more rewarding and fulfilling to surrender to Divine Love as that which is the Source and Essence of All That Is. With such an approach there can be no fear, no struggle, no suffering for all control and resistance is released and one turns life over to Love. What could be easier…? The irony of such a surrender is comical yet also demonstrates the ego’s incredible tenacity and inability to let go of attachments. Hence the need of a guru/teacher – the rooted ego cannot transcend itself. It takes the courage and faith in those who have gone before to dive into the unknown with conviction and trust. What is waiting on the other side is so infinitely rewarding it is unimaginable to the passing ego.
The ego is at its core narcissistic and it loves itself so much that it even loves its suffering. For those of us who have had enough of the suffering and want something else we continue on our journey inward and self-inquiry ripens. As we go deeper and more radically within we being to realize that all notions of control have been an illusion the entire time and the Presence of Divine Love becomes increasingly apparent. The eventual conclusion of this surrender is we are in fact one with this Unnamable, Indescribable, Ineffable Love that is the Source of all existence and there has never been any reason to ever fear. It dawns stunningly profound that all fear has been an illusion and a product of the ego’s attachments. As we let go of all attachment, we surrender the core of the ego’s existence, the fear of death/nonexistence. As we take the plunge and surrender our life to God the true Self emerges in an infinite splendor as the limited, fleeting small self is annihilated forever along with all fear, lack, death, separation, or suffering. We are free and liberated at last, one with Divinity – Nonduality Realized.
Namaste my dearest love