Leave Ego Behind And Find More Meaning in Life

mbg Contributor By Jessica Cooper
mbg Contributor
Jessica Cooper is a Boston-based yoga teacher. She was trained and certified by the Yandara Institute (Yoga Alliance Certified) in 2012 and has been teaching Vinyasa classes ever since.
Leave Ego Behind And Find More Meaning in Life

Image by Javier Díez / Stocksy

One of my favorite quotes from Caroline Myss’ The Anatomy of the Spirit helps set the tone for this post: “Ironically, once we realize the stuff of which we are made, we have no choice but to live a spiritual life.”

To me, this means that once you really begin to understand how interconnected everything and everyone is, it's impossible to revert back to a thought pattern full of separation and ego. You have no choice but to live a life of respect for all other forms of creation, because you understand how beautiful each and every thing here on our Earth truly is. You see that everything has purpose and is exactly the way it's supposed to be.

This all may sound crazy and full of false promises of happiness and perfection, because you may believe this world just isn’t like that, or that people just don’t think and live that way. But you can enjoy living in a heightened frequency of beauty and meaning in this world right now, regardless of what's going on around you. It just takes some time to see things differently. Here are a few tips:

In order to get to see beauty and meaning in everything, we must get to the place of peace, mindfulness, being and consciousness. So let’s start with getting past ego and separation.

Ego is the feeling of a separate “I," which we call ego-consciousness. It's directly related to the strength of ignorance, greed, and hatred. The deepest meaning of ignorance is the belief in and clinging to the ego, which as we have seen, is nothing but an illusory mental phenomenon. But because of this strong attachment to ego-consciousness, desire, anger and hatred arise.

The ego needs activity in order to exist. Like, dislike, attachment, aversion, greed and hatred are the main overt activities of the ego. The more desire and aversion we have, the more real and concrete the ego seems.

In reality, the ego depends on desire. The ego and desire are like the two sides of a coin — one cannot exist without the other. The ego is projected desire, and desire is projected ego. It is like pedaling a bicycle: if we go on pedalling, the bicycle goes on moving; but if we stop pedalling the bicycle, will start slowing down and eventually will collapse. The more we go on generating desire, the more the ego seems very real. When desire stops, the ego then appears as an illusion.

In understanding what the ego is and how it thrives, we can now see where separation enters. Separation is the result of an egoic mind. When we allow our ego to rule us, we can't help but see “us” as separate from everyone and everything ”else,” and we therefore act with a lack of mindfulness, connectedness, love, and compassion.

Learning to let go of the ego is the first, and most important, step to finding beauty and meaning in everything, everywhere. Once we understand that we are an important piece of an infinite universe, we automatically become more conscious of every thought and action. Everything we think and do has a butterfly effect on everything else. There is no other way; we are all immensely interconnected, for we truly are all one.

Learn to get in touch with the silence within yourself, and know that everything in life has purpose. There are no mistakes, no coincidences. All events are blessings given to us to learn from.

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