Chapter 2: The Ego-Self
An excerpt from You Have Chosen to Remember: A Journey of Self-Awareness, Peace of Mind and Joy by James Blanchard Cisneros.
The ego is a limited belief system within our minds that we have molded and identified as being who we are. The ego survives by establishing boundaries, borders and limits on everything it sees. The defining of such boundaries, borders and limits gives it the illusion that it can tell us what is right and wrong, all in an effort to control us by instructing us on what we are and are not, how we should act and not act, and why we should judge those who challenge it and the status quo. We are taught the right and wrong way to do things, and the right and wrong way to react. Because we learn from the outside world, we believe that truth lies outside of ourselves.
Judgment and fear feed the ego, generating numerous perceived weaknesses and limitations we believe we must defend as real. The more time we spend in defense of our ego and our limitations, the more we believe that this is who we are. And because we see our ego as real and representing ourselves, we defend our ego against anyone we perceive to be attacking it. In our minds, any view that disagrees with our belief system attacks it.
We perceive the attacks on our ego and its illusions as real, so we become defensive. The more time we spend defending our false or ego-self, the more we reaffirm the ego’s reality. The more we reaffirm the ego’s reality, the more willing we are to come to its defense. The more we defend the illusions of the ego-self as real, the more concepts and ideas we will encounter in the world that do not fit into our reality. We perceive different concepts and ideas as assaults to our reality. We defend our ego-self, through the act of judgment. The exercise of judgment separates us from our fellow brothers and sisters causing stress that may be conscious or unconscious. Stress creates confusion, and a build up of confusion ultimately leads to chaos.
The more time we spend in defense of our ego-self, the more time we exist in a state of confusion. We might give our state of confusion a hundred different names, such as annoyance, anger, stress, sadness, depression, but they all exist because of our belief in the ego’s reality. They all exist within our minds and are fed and kept alive by our belief in our ego-self.
Our tolerance for pain may be high but our acceptance of our ego-self is not without limit. Many of us ultimately come to a point in our lives where we tell ourselves that there must be a better way, a more fulfilling way of living – that this just can’t be what it’s all about! These thoughts begin the process of awakening ourselves to the knowledge of who we truly are.
This text can be found in the book - You Have Chosen to Remember: A Journey of Self-Awareness, Peace of Mind and Joy.
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