Daily Dalai Lama ~ EGO

Discussion in 'Spirituality/Worship' started by Rafiki, Mar 12, 2009.

  1. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    Thursday, March 12, 2009
    The foundation of the Buddha's teachings lies in compassion, and the reason for practicing the teachings is to wipe out the persistence of ego, the number-one enemy of compassion.

    - Dalai Lama
  2. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    my own ego.

    Took me a long, long time to understand this. I'd love to hear what other traditions have to say about the ego.

    Peace out,
  3. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    Yes, Jam, you do seem to get it. I'm sorry that you must deal with the damage ego does in the way you must. It is not something one can readily explain to someone else - especially not someone who is at the mercy of an ego running amok.

    Hello Hanginginthere, I agree completely! The practice of humility is so freeing! I find I have to practice everything or I can't do it. I have to fail and forgive, fail and forgive, fail and forgive while moving closer to a way of being I wish to adopt.

    I keep posting Simple Gifts, the Quaker song about humility. (I know you love the Quakers, Jam.) It is a fantastic meditation. When I can walk my little dog on the nearby beach, I sometimes do a walking meditation while quietly singing Simple Gifts - I'm tone deaf, quiet is good! A kind of joy builds up in my spirit when I do this, a joy I can hardly contain. When I see someone walking my way on the beach I simply must say hello and smile a wide smile or I will just burst with gladness!

    Peace to all ~ and much thanks for sustaining this marvelous venue of the spirit!


  4. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    Yes, yes, pride is the fruit of the ego, isn't it.

    I, too, have been/are guilty of so many forms of pride. I continue to be "guilty" although I use different words. We can even engage the ego and become prideful of vanquishing pride! We are such funny beings!

    I think more would be willing to practice humility - for me everything is practice because I have yet to get anything "right" so I just keep practicing - anyway, if more practiced humility, more would understand how it helps one to truly feel grounded, safe, stable.

    I think many are afraid to let go of the stuff of the ego that they believe are helping them to feel "good enough" not knowing that there is real peace in letting go. It's so hard to be afraid and we are, most of us, afraid so practicing humility seems a big leap of faith - so to speak.


  5. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    If I may hazard a guess, I wager that you will really appreciate this take on the ego.

    Peace to you,
  6. PainPainGoAway

    PainPainGoAway New Member

    "SO LONG as you can sweeten another's pain, life is not in vain" Helen Keller

    I find that very comforting personally, no matter what you believe...it makes a difference to those who look out for others, and not just themselves. It's part of human nature to want to be loved and show love for others...not always easy, but better for us all.

  7. Doznclan3

    Doznclan3 New Member

    I really like that rainbow. Balance and Harmony is very important for the "balanced feeling." I forgot that you are from a Native American spirituality. I love hearing the Native American ways. They are a very spiritual people. Stand strong in their beliefs, like so many do. I respect that.
    To me, ego is someone that is all puffed up in pride, not accepting or allowing anything/anyone with different ways into their heart. That it is their way only. I guess I could use the word "stubborn." :p
    After reading a lot of what has been written yesterday, I see that we're doing ok on this board excepting others. I think that's a great thing. No one better than another. Love is what it's all about when it comes to balance and harmony. :)
  8. springwater

    springwater Well-Known Member

    Ego. Im guessing I would relate to this as a sense of self importance. And therefore undesirable in one seeking a peaceful way of life.

    Like anyone else I struggle with this one. I found Julies post marvelously close to what I feel on the issue.

    And of course yours, Rafiki, when you said pride in vanquishing pride. The trick I find is in distinguishing between when is it my ego or someone else crossing what I have considered to be accepted boundaries with me. Is it wrong if I refuse to be stepped on? Is this my ego and therefore wrong, or is it just me asserting myself and my rights.

    Boy, sure is a tricky one and I understand when you say it takes all the practice you can muster to remain ego less. I am trying to inculcate the art of ‘letting go’ and practicing humility and therefore be more LOVING’ than RIGHT..but oh, Rafiki it’s an uphill task. Those chattering monkeys in my head keep bringing up feelings of resentment and irritation when dealing with certain situations and goading me to assert my ego.

    God Bless
  9. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    Talk of the Ego is so complicated, isn't it. Julies post was full of wisdom and right on. As was Cynthia's and Rain's and Srping's and Jam's...

    For me, the Ego is that which chatters away in my head in an extreme fashion - I'm a terrible person, I'm a good person, I'm terrible, I'm good... The ego protects itself at all costs.

    The ego is seldom in the present moment - it is not my animation or my essential "self", it is my story. The ego is not awake to what is right now, it is always dragging around what was or protecting itself from what might be. The ego is what I have created with the sum total of my experience which obscures what is actually happening now. It colours my understanding of everything. The worst thing is that I confuse my ego with my "self". I am no more my ego than I am my body.

    The practice of humility - helped by that little Quaker song - takes me out of that dreadful loop, that awful judgmental polarity - good/bad, right/wrong, horrible/wonderful... and allows me to be deeply flawed and struggling and hurt and irritated and cranky and jealous and annoyed and resentful and the LET IT GO because humility teaches me that when I let go, I do not fall, I simply stop suffering. My ego would have me suffer forever.

    But, for sure, I find it an uphill task to deal with the ego. I don't know about you but I can't "remain" egoless because I have never been egoless. The most I can achieve is those wonderful moments when the ego is a little bit quieter or when I can ignore its bubbling negativity. The longer I can stay in a state where I can let it bubble without stirring the pot, the better.

    Yes, to be more LOVING than RIGHT! Or BALANCE. Or LOVING. All these are perfect antidotes to ego! If we learn to laugh at the chattering monkeys instead of chasing them, they seem to get discouraged and fall asleep. Of course, it doesn't take much to wake them up again. Ah well, we're only human. "'Tis a gift to be humble, 'tis a gift to be free, 'tis a gift to come down where I ought to be..."

    Also, Spring, you raise one of the most complicated issues -one facing His Holiness for the past 50 years- how to distinguish the stuff of the ego from the times when one is being stepped on. Universal Compassion helps us to discern one from the other but it is very difficult, I find. I suppose that if we know we are acting with compassion for those who are transgressing against us, we can be fairly sure that the ego is not at the wheel. That is a pretty lofty state and one which few (not me!) can always manage. I think His Holiness can but I think that even he must remember the Eightfold path in order to do so.

    But, it's not about being perfect or getting it right all the time, is it. It really can't be, not for me anyway, because that is outside what I am capable of. The best I can do, personally, is to try to make new and better mistakes.

    Peace to all,

    ETA This is such a beautiful discussion. This is really what I almost dared not hope this board could be.

    [This Message was Edited on 03/13/2009]
  10. Doznclan3

    Doznclan3 New Member

    You are great with words. I like where you said..The most I can achieve is those wonderful moments when the ego is a little bit quieter or when I can ignore it's bubbling negativity. The longer I can stay in a state where I can let it bubble without stirring the pot, the better.
    That's great. It really is an uphill task to keep it away. As you again, put it so well, we aren't perfect..and we should be trying to do our personal best every new day.
    Love ya, Cynthia
  11. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    You are so kind, always. You make me believe just maybe we can all get along -- all of us.

    You give me hope!

    Thank you for hope,
  12. vivian53

    vivian53 Member

    You did so much work and organized it so well. I have been in the mental health profession longer than I care to remember. This is a great discussion of ego, even Freud could learn something, I know I did. Thanks rainbow11.

  13. springwater

    springwater Well-Known Member

    My goodness, your insights astound me!

    Yes, vivian, even I am so impressed by the way rainbow has gone about this, the way she has taken the trouble to write down that long post....and arrived at the conclusion that it was better to simplify.

    Vivian, happy to have you on board, everyone is capable of bringing insights according to what they have observed and you have been in such an interesting field....i do think many nowadays are perfectly happy combining science and spirituality in their lives and in a professional area such as yours, using it in their work to help others.

    God Bless
  14. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    I just heard about you being an angel!

    God Bless Rain!

  15. Rafiki

    Rafiki New Member

    I'm reading a book of discussions with His Holiness called: Mind and Life, Discussion with the Dalai Lama on the Nature of Reality. It's all about Buddhism and science, a topic I find fascinating!

    I posted to you on another thread the other day but not sure if you've been there again and can't remember which one it was.

    ah well

    with much metta to you and yours,

  16. windblade

    windblade Active Member

    Have been reading much about the Desert Fathers, Christian monks of the 4th century, who lived in caves to practice prayer and meditation.

    Because I fight often with despair, I found encouragement in their seeing despair as "the most vicious and self-defeating temptation of all, that of losing trust in God's providence and love. They also valued humility as a tool for maintaining hope."

    The Latin origins of humility suggest strength and fertility.

    The word comes from 'humus', as in 'earth'.

    "A humble person is one who accepts the paradox of being both great and small".

    Being able to accept both my strengths and weaknesses, to accept being great and small is what I struggle with daily. I think it will help me to find more peace, to be able to rest in the truth of myself.

    For me - a very large, but necessary challenge.

    This is a wonderful thread - full of insights, and wisdom. Very inspiring .

    p.s. my quotes are from a wonderful poet and writer 'Kathleen Norris'.
  17. windblade

    windblade Active Member

    Thank you so much for your prayers, dear friend! I did make a breakthrough into more strength, and was able to find another way of leaving behind negativity.

    Your prayer was so beautiful that I copied it into my journal, to be able to read again.