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What is Ego (Egoism)?

Ego is not to be removed; egoism (ahamkar) is to be removed. Ego means I - referred to as existence: 'I am' (astitva). To say 'I am', for what is your own Self (swaroop) is not egoism. All living beings are aware of their existence: 'I am' (astitva). However, they do not have the awareness of reality: 'what I am' (vastutva).  Understand the real Self as the bondage is due to not knowing the real Self!

Did you know, 'I am the body' is also egoism. 'I am Mr. John' is also egoism (ahamkar). And this is not the only type of egoism. The list goes on  - 'I am an engineer,' 'I am his son,' 'I am her husband,' 'I am his wife,’  'I am so many years old,' 'I am physically fat', 'I have a dark complexion'... Read on to understand the various forms of egoism and how to attain freedom from bondage as shown by Gnani Purush Dadashri...



Spiritual Quotes on "What is Ego (Egoism)?"

1. Ego (aham) is not to be removed; egoism (ahankar) is to be removed. 'I' (hoon; ego) is there anyway, but it is the egoism that has to be removed. "'I' without 'my' is God", which is why you need to get rid of the 'My'. It is because of the 'my' that it is considered as egoism. If there is no 'My', then to say aham ('I'); 'I am Atma', is perfectly acceptable.  This is because that is your own thing. To say, 'I am this body', is egoism.

2. 'I' am this' is indeed egoism. It (egoism) has achieved power from the light of the Soul (chetan). [But] There is no Soul in it at all; it is a body-complex entity. Many machines run by solar energy, how much energy of the sun is utilized there? How much doer-ship of sun is present there?

3. Egoism (ahankar) occurs first, and then the body is formed.  The Gita is correct, when it clearly states that first the egoism arises, and then all this is a result. It is because of egoism that karmas are bound, and all this: the mind, speech and body is the result of that. Egoism is the 'cause', and the mind, speech and the body, are the 'effect'. 

4. Acquisition and renunciation (grahan and tyaag) are qualities of egoism (ahankar), whereas discharge [of remaining karma; nikaal] is an attribute of non-egoism.

5. All fear stems from egoism. The one without egoism is free of fear!

6.Who experiences worldly pleasures?The senses experience worldly pleasures. Soul can never experience worldly pleasures. Soul is the subtlest and senses are gross and Soul has never experienced the worldly pleasures at all. Soul can't experience the worldly pleasures at all. Egoism can't experience the worldly pleasures either. It only does the egoism (ahankar) of the 'experienced' that 'I readily enjoyed this very well.' Or it will say that I didn't experience this, it only does egoism; there is nothing else.

7.  In the language of God, the meaning of Gnani is, a person whose anger, pride, deceit, greed are completely gone! He is the one who has become free of egoism (nirahankari)!

What did Lord Krishna say about such a Gnani? "Such a Gnani is my Soul itself, the Gnani is my most beloved. Dear Arjun, see no difference between I and the Gnani." Lord Krishna gave the Gnani , the seat next to Him, as his equal!

8. When Dadashri attained Gnan, what happened? The egoism completely disappeared!

9. Only where there is a Gnani, does egoism leave, otherwise egoism will never go.   

10. Where there is egoism (ahankar), there will be demerit karma (paap) and merit karma (punya). If egoism is gone, it means merit and demerit karma are gone. 

11. Karma is not done by the body complex (pudgal), and neither is it done by the Atma. If the body complex did karma, then the body complex of even the Gnani Purush would do karma. And if the Soul (Atma) did karma, then there is a Soul even in him (Gnani). It does not do karma. It is egoism (ahankar) that does karma. If egoism is gone, the 'doer' of karma is gone and so karmas are gone.

12. When will the Self be achieved? When the rule of egoism ends, Self will be achieved. The nature of Self is such that no pain can touch It. Can termites infest upon fire? Termites can infest upon wood. Nothing touches Self. Pain can't touch It at all. Therefore, if you become the form of Self you will remain in bliss only. There is pain as long as there is the form of egoism.

13. There is no egoism in a small boy and for that reason everything is supplied to him. Similarly, there is no egoism in Gnani so everything is supplied to him. It is your egoism that doesn't allow you to get the supplies.

14.  As the egoism gets eradicated, as it gets less and less, all the things will start to fall in your lap. How far does the law of getting your desire fulfilled extend? On one side, the desire is created and on the other side, you get the thing on the moment! The law is that good!

15.  Once this Gnan is given to you, you will no longer have any worries or anxiety. That's because egoism (ahankar) and my-ness (mamta) are gone. .

Science behind "What is Ego (Egoism)?"

1. God (Bhagawan) does not look at any of your actions (kriya). God He looks at where you do egoism. God says, 'you did egoism, so you must go back.  We do not want the disease of egoism. 'I have done renunciation; I have never touched alcohol', - we do not want to hear such things. You will be rewarded for that; you will receive the fruits of whatever you have done.  All I want [concerned with] is that you have not done egoism.'  

How does renunciation (tyaga) oblige others? Since you had done the acquisition (grahan), it is now time for you to renounce. But what if you had not done the acquisition in the first place? Because you got married, you now have to renounce the wife; but what if you didn't get married in the first place? Would one ever have the need to renounce? But here, one wants to enjoy the pleasure of renouncing. 'I renounced', he will say.

2. And when one gets on the train, what does he say? He may have boarded at Mumbai, so we ask him, 'Where are you going?' and he replies, 'I'm on my way to Navsari' as he is sits down. We say, 'Dear man, how is it that you are going; you are sitting here, aren't you?' But he insists 'I am going to Navasari, aren't I!'  We say, 'Are you crazy?  Are you going to Navasari or is the train going there? You are just sitting here!'  This is because someone else is doing that, but he believes he is the one doing it. Everything is done by 'someone' else. Everything means each and every atom (anu)! A person will even say, 'I even passed [exams] at school!' And he goes around showing off; however, when he later fails, you would ask, 'You used to pass every term, and this term you failed?' 'The exam was difficult, this and that', he'll say, and continues to fumble his words. Wouldn't he fumble? Can you understand? 

Questioner: Yes, I understand this.

Dadashri: So, this control is not yours at all.  This is under the control of nature. All the power of the relative self which is there; it is in the hands of nature. And the Self-effort (purusharth) starts after the relative self and real Self are separated. The real purusharth (Self-effort) begins after one becomes the Purush; Self-realized.

In you, the relative self and the real Self are not separate yet, or are they? If they have not been separated, you come here. Everything in this world is 'it happens', it happens; no one is able to do it.

3. When the power cells within a battery discharges; does the cell have life in it? Although it is non-living (nirjiva), it still discharges from within. So, in the same way, 'we' (Gnani Purush) separate the three batteries of the mind, speech and body complex; 'we' make them lifeless (nirjiva). Thereafter, they will continue to discharge. Before, everything was living. The egoism (ahankar) was alive, even the mind was alive; therefore, the new was being charged and the old was discharging.

Try It Yourself

Try It Yourself

1. Questioner:  How can one decrease his egoism if he does not have Self-realization?

Dadashri: The egoism will begin to break if someone insults you. There's a big difference between breaking egoism and scratching it. This is how egoism breaks up. So when someone insults you, you should do the intent (bhaav) of, 'Dada Bhagawan, give him peace'. And if you happen to lose ten dollars somewhere, you should not start worrying. Just say, 'Dada, as you like, so be it''.

And another thing is that you should never say, 'I am intelligent'. Never say, 'I am not intelligent'.  Otherwise it will spur a 'psychological effect'. By saying, 'I am intelligent', the egoism will increase. Try out these experiments, of tolerance, and also by saying, 'whatever Dada Bhagwan wills, is right' and carry on like this. And so your egoism will decrease. Have you understood this? It is short and simple; it is not complicated. If you try just this much, it will be more than enough.

Questioner:  But when the time comes, we can't put it into practice.

Dadashri: If you take Dada Bhagawan*'s name, it will happen. If you try to do it directly, it will not work. We' give you 'our' blessings. If you inadvertently say something that hurts the other person, then repentant for it. And after that, say, 'Dada Bhagawan, please give him peace.' There are even effects of egoism. If you cut the egoism right now, it can be easily cut. However its 'link' never goes away, its roots never go. Then after twelve months or two years, it will sprout again. This knowledge is scientific and therefore, it actually works.

*Dada Bhagawan = When asked "who is Dada Bhagwan?" - Dadashri would say: "What you see here is not 'Dada Bhagwan.' What you see is 'A.M.Patel.' I am a Gnani Purush and He that is manifest within me, is 'Dada Bhagwan'. He is the Lord within. He is within you and everyone else. He has not yet manifest within you, whereas within me he is fully manifest. I myself am not a Bhagwan. I too bow down to Dada Bhagwan within me."

Dada's Life Example

Dada's Life Example

1. Here, no preferential treatment is given to anyone important, any ordinary person or the elderly. Of course, 'we' still remain within the dictates of the worldly interaction (vyavahar). If certain people came here, say the prime minister came here, then 'we' would stand up to greet him and invite him to sit next to 'us'. And if he says that he has come here for religion (dharma); I would ask him to sit on the floor. But if he came in his capacity as a Prime Minister, 'we' would interact in the appropriate manner. This is because he should not be hurt.

Questioner: Even his ego would not be hurt. 

Dadashri: He must not feel hurt. Even an egoistic person must not feel hurt. That should be our religion (dharma). This means that you have to give him due respect (maan) as would be appropriate in the worldly interaction. 'We' give a lot of importance to worldly interactions. Each according to his standing and rank, would be treated in the proper way.

2. The rule of this world is such that if you look in the East direction, the West direction will be blocked out.  In the same way, when you hear the names of saints, meaning all good people, wouldn't all your pain and misery (dukha) decrease during that time? But when you remember bad company (koosang), all your unhappiness reappears! This is a rule; a law. And when you think of spiritual people (satsangis), you feel joy (sukha), Many amongst the spiritual people are highly elevated; them, if you remember the Self-enlightened beings and the Gnani Purush; it would be something quite unique.  The work of the Gnani Purush, is how to give happiness to everyone: that is his work. If someone hurts him, he accepts it, and blesses that person with a long and virtuous life.

If after meeting me, should anyone ever experience unhappiness, then the fault would be all mine. It does not matter how disagreeable that person may be; I do not look at his worthiness or unworthiness. So far, anyone who has encountered me, he has not been unhappy. Until when during my entire life, did I have egoism?  Until I had the Gnan; I had the egoism of 'once a person meets me, he must have some happiness'.

3.  Dadashri: When I talk here and a person gets angry, I will instantly know that I am wrong. Completely, one hundred percent wrong, so I won't say that he is getting angry because he does not understand. The mistake is entirely mine. 

Questioner: Not everyone is able to grasp the level of  humility in you. You change everything around in a second. 

Dadashri: You are weak to begin with and you may become weaker still. I have to give you a "scope" (chance).

Questioner:  And in order to give us a chance, you will not say that others are wrong.

Dadashri: I will say that I made the mistake.

Questioner: All I can say is that even after you have attained all this Gnan, when someone can't understand, you say that, you are the one who is wrong.

Dadashri: I would just say, 'I am wrong'. You are not able to see, so for how long will I go on telling you; 'look, look! It is like this, it is like that'. You will become frustrated. And if you have a knife in your hand, you'll stab me. I would have to say, 'No you are right, put your knife away son.' Otherwise one will end up hurting me because he cannot see.

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