It’s common for people who are on the path of personal growth to discover the biggest thing that stands between them and where they want to be is themselves. That part of themselves which is for the most part hidden from their conscious mind but more powerful than anything seen with the eyes. We call this your ego.
To you, this part of you feels like the most important thing in your life, as though it should be protected, guarded, adhered to, and obeyed at every instance. Your ego creates fear and paranoia at every opportunity and has you on alert for any hint of being disrespected or threatened and it has you on high alert, ready to fight or flee at any moment.
But this part of you is not that higher version of yourself which seeks to bestow upon you all the good things in life. That higher part of you that wants the best for you, encouraging you to want more, desiring to see you do things the easy way, instead of the hard way. It harkens you to achieve your highest and best.
When you witness someone so close to having the best things in life, then see them lost in a sea of helplessness with their hopes for a better life thwarted once again, if you’re compelled to think that he or she is his or her worst enemy, there is likely a self-destructive battle of the ego and pride going on behind the scenes.
You may have even found yourself saying, “I am my worst enemy,” and if you have, there’s a good chance your ego is the tiger you must tame to fully enjoy the good life.
Your ego is such an ever-present part of you who knows everything about you, every word spoken or unspoken, every feeling that you’ve ignored or tried to hide, every tear that’s ever fallen, and the only presence who has never abandoned you. It’s no wonder you’ve become so dependent upon it.
Your ego has assured you that it is the only essence which cares for you and seeks to protect you from that which seeks to destroy you, the lions, tigers, bears, and unseen things which are just waiting to ruin your life, keeping you in a constant state of fear.
The letting go of this protective and prideful part of yourself is frightening even to consider.
How can I live a life increasing the potential for vulnerability or danger? Surely, nothing good could come from that.
These are the thoughts your ego has cloaked itself in, to protect you from seeing its true nature.
Though the process may be grueling and not unlike suffering the prolonged dying of a loved one, letting go of the ego, connecting instead your love and life to that greater part of you, is not easy.
In fact, it’s referred to as a dying to self, which as you can imagine, could be quite traumatic.
Dying to self is a key component in religious, spiritual, personal growth, and conscious expansion. It is part of the emerging evolution of the human condition.
Every time a part of the ego dies, love (that every powerful, unlimited force of life) fills the void, your life gets a little easier, you experience a growing peace as life gets lighter and you find it easy to be happier for longer periods of time.
It’s not easy, and it’s not something you should consider running into haphazardly. Dying to self is serious business, and as the ego dies, there will be a grieving process, and that’s okay.
No one can really tell you how to conduct this process of dying to self and letting go of your ego.
This is your journey.
You can watch and learn from others who have gone before, but this business of letting go of your self which represents that barbarian part of our ancestors is highly unique unto you.
You must make your own way to your new, more enlightened, and evolved self which is waiting for your arrival.