Thursday, March 13, 2008
MY EGO – MY PURSUIT OF ATTENTION
A child is born without any knowledge; any consciousness of his own self and the first thing he becomes aware of is not himself. He becomes aware of the mother first. If the mother smiles, if she appreciates the child, if she hugs and kisses him, the child feels good about himself. NOW AN EGO IS BORN. First the mother and then the others will join the mother, and the child’s world goes on growing. And the more the world grows, the more complex the ego becomes, because many others' opinions are reflected. Through appreciation/disregard, love/hatred, he feels he is good/bad, he feels he is valuable/useless, he feels he has some significance/insignificant. A center is born. I is born - the reflected center...he simply knows what others think about him and that is all that matters. And this is the ego: the reflection, what others think.
The extent of the ego's inability to recognize itself and see what it is doing is staggering and unbelievable. To become free of the ego is a big job... especially when you get a lot more than you ever deserved. Unfortunately not a lot of people are blessed to be great enough to overcome that and unluckily, most of us have such type of highly incompetent and useless leaders imposed on us.
And here I must add that though I am not aware how selfless I am myself or how free of ego I am.... but I am surely blessed because I do know a bunch of people who have realized their own potential and have been able to identify the fake ego center.
And I have been able to appreciate them much more than I would have otherwise done because at the same time I have also encountered a few people for whom, their ego is all that matters and unfortunately for them, they cannot see anything beyond it...
Its like this story... One small child was visiting his grandparents. He was just four years old. In the night when the grandmother was putting him to sleep, he suddenly started crying and weeping and said, "I want to go home. I am afraid of darkness." But the grandmother said, "I know well that at home also you sleep in the dark; I have never seen a light on. So why are you afraid here?" The boy said, "Yes, that's right - but that is MY darkness. This darkness is completely unknown.”
And so similarly with their larger than life, and more often than not, with their larger then themselves ego, they feel, "This is MY darkness." They all seem to be satisfied with their plastic ego. It’s like a plastic flower; a THING that looks like a flower but is dead and hence is nothing like it.
And of course, there are reasons why such egoistic people are satisfied. With a dead thing, there are many conveniences. One is that a dead thing never dies. It cannot - it was never alive. So you can have plastic flowers, they are good in a way. They are permanent - they are not eternal, but they are permanent. But then it is a plastic thing. And it is very easy to get it, because others give it...good or bad. You need not seek it; there is no search involved. That's why unless you become a seeker after the unknown; you have not yet become an individual. You are just a part of the crowd. YOU ARE JUST A MOB.
Egoist, as most of us are... Some are very gross, just on the surface, and they are not so difficult. Some are very subtle, deep down, and they are the real problems. Their ego comes continuously in conflict with others because their ego is so unconfident about itself. Is has to be - it is a false thing. When you don't have anything in your hand and you just think that something is there, AND THEN there will be a problem.
If somebody says, "There is nothing," immediately the fight will start, because you also feel that there is nothing. The other makes you aware of the fact. And whenever the others say that, they hit a wound, they say a truth - and nothing hits like the truth.
You have to defend, because if you don't defend, if you don't become defensive, then where will you be? You will be lost. The identity will be broken. So you have to defend and fight - that is the clash. And such egoists can go to any extent to win.
And hence I believe that it takes much more a strength of character to maintain ones dignity and self-respect in testing times instead of giving in to your ego and basic instincts of fighting back. We should know who we are, we should know our worth and that is all that matters.
A man who attains to the self is never in any clash. Others may come and clash with him, but he is never in clash with anybody. You can clash with an enlightened man, but that is your problem, not his. And if you are hurt in that clash, that too is your own problem. He did not hurt you. It is like knocking against a wall - you will be hurt, but the wall has not hurt you.
However, it won’t make sense to I, the reflected center. Because the ego is always looking for some trouble. Why? Because if nobody pays attention to you, the ego feels hungry. It lives on attention. So even if somebody is fighting and angry with you that too are good because at least the attention is paid. If somebody loves, it is okay. If somebody is not loving you, then even anger will be good. At least the attention will come to you. But if nobody is paying any attention to you, nobody thinks that you are somebody important, significant, and then how will you feed your ego?
OTHER”S ATTENTION IS NEEDED. OTHER’S REACTION IS NEEDED
This is a deep begging. And the one who does that stoops lower than a beggar displaying his/her nude and hungry child to extract sympathy and hence money from strangers. WHAT A WASTE OF A HUMAN BEING.