The Sunlit Path|Jun 25, 2003 8:31 AM| by:

Getting Rid of the Ego

A large number of the conflicts and problems which arise in our lives and our relationships are due to the ego. Most of us make efforts to remain within limits. All spiritual disciplines affirm that it is essential to get rid of the ego completely if one wants to progress, to follow the spiritual path and to find the Divine.

But all who have tried, realise that this is not easy. The Mother was asked the reason for this. Here is her answer.

Question: How to abolish the ego? Why is it so difficult to get rid of it?

First of all, you must want to do it, and there are very few people who want to. And that is exactly what they say, it is this justification of their way of being, “That is the way I am made, I can’t do otherwise. And then, if I change this, if I change that or if I do without this thing or if I get rid of that other, I shall no longer exist!” And if one doesn’t say this openly, one thinks it. And all these little desires, these little satisfactions, these little reactions, all these small ways of being, one clings to them, clings hard – one sticks to them, one doesn’t want to let them go. I have seen hundreds of cases where someone’s difficulty had been removed (with a particular power a certain difficulty had been removed), but after a few days he brought it back with enthusiasm. He said, “But without that I do not exist any longer!”

You cannot imagine it, you don’t know how very difficult it is to separate oneself from this little ego; how much it gets into the way though it is so small. It takes up so much room while being so microscopic. It is very difficult. One pushes it away in certain very obvious things; for example, if there is something good and someone rushes forward to make sure of having it first, even jostling his neighbour (this happens very frequently in ordinary life), then here one becomes quite aware that this is not very, very elegant, so one begins to suppress these crudities, one makes a big effort – and one becomes highly self-satisfied: “I am not selfish, I give what is good to others, I don’t keep it for myself”, and one begins to get puffed up. And so one is filled with a moral egoism which is much worse than physical egoism, for it is conscious of its superiority.

And then there are those who have left everything, given up everything, who have left their families, distributed their belongings, gone into solitude, who live an ascetic life, and who are terribly conscious of their superiority, who look down at poor humanity from the height of their spiritual grandeur – and they have, these people, such a formidable ego that unless it is broken into small bits, never, never will they see the Divine.

So it is not such an easy task. It takes a lot of time. And I must tell you that even when the work is done, it must always be begun again.

– The Mother