Go Go Go …………Ego Ego Ego
“Nothing damages iron more than its own rust and nothing damages a person more than his/her own ego.”
The title is inspired by Ricky Martin's song Go, go, go and the theme suggested by my student Nazia. Thank you both. Why do we have ego problems? Why are our egos even more fragile than glass? What is the dividing line between ego and self-respect? These questions trouble all of us, day in and day out.
Long back a teacher had told me, “Two people have ego problems and inflated egos. The one with the inferiority complex and the one with the superiority complex. Either way, you are a complex creature and are not simple anymore.” So true, don’t we have ego problems when we lack confidence in ourselves and become touchy about small things? Don’t we have ego problems when our successes make us feel much above this vast sea of humanity around?
One simple way of handling ego is to understand how small we are in the scheme of the universe. Stand in front of the ocean and see its limitlessness. I have felt so belittled standing in front of the majestic sea which literally makes a mockery of my ego and subdues it down. Should there be ego in love? Tough question indeed. Paulo Coelho says, “The strongest love is love that can demonstrate its fragility.” Beautiful Paulo, you have answered my question.
Easier said than done. Human insecurities and ego are the most difficult things to master. Even if we master them, it’s like the moment of enlightenment in meditation which comes and goes. But yes, it does leave its perfume behind. Similarly when we try to master our ego, we may not succeed to do it 100 %, but yes as the inflated ego bounces back, we can leave behind some perfume of mastering ego, with ourselves.
The day we realize that our ego is only destroying us (through wisdom gained through meditation and other tools), at least we start taking conscious effort of showing ego its due place…. a little speck in the universe.
As I was discussing this with my student he got wild at me and said, “Sir on one hand you say that we all have a God inside and on the other hand you say we are such a insignificant speck in the universe. How is it possible? How the hell we can be God and insignificant at the same time?” Well my dear that is the trick. Life is a bundle of contradictions, a tension of opposites. If you are God, then you must be humble enough to accept that you are insignificant.
A friend told me an interesting story. “A woman must respect her man's male ego and a man must respect her woman's emotion”, said the Guru to the disciple. The disciple asked what if she asks for my credit card and emotionally blackmails me. Guru said, "Give her the credit card lovingly but you decide the limit. Well the new woman will tell me, “Hey dude, I too have a female ego. What is so male about it?” Well it’s just a story and let husband-wife decide how they want to define their relationship.
Another friend argued, “I only have an ego problem when somebody is trying to belittle me.” I said, “If people are trying to bring you down, it only means that you are above them.” The one who is above has to act mature and elderly with the one who is below. Just remember our ego is making a fool out of us and not letting us see the true world (aankhon mein dhool jhonkta hai). Well I am trying to shake the dust away, are you?
"Ego is just like dust in the eye-without clearing dust, you can’t see anything clearly. So clear the ego and see the world"
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