Is ego death necessary for enlightenment? If so, what remains? Is it the same thing as the dark night of the soul?
Even enlightenment comes in parcels. One at a time. Lose yourself inch by inch
What is the next parcel then, do you know? I am tired of feeling like a freak show.
Why do you want to lose yourself? Can you really separate yourself from your aching flesh and your grieving mind? That's an illusion what you are speaking about.
You may achieve different states of consciousness, or mind whatever, that's different. People imagine a lot about enlightenment. Often money and love cures all the need for enlightenment.
You may be a special character: then, too, don't lose touch with reality. Even the Buddha could not stay on his words. He was tired of asceticism.
IMO, if one can be an illusion (as in separating from flesh and grief) then flesh and grief can also be an illusion. We can pass through space and matter, walk on water, levitate, or appear as light if we know how to master self-control over the relation of the body to the ether.
Your take on money and love curing the need for enlightenment is interesting. For most of us, we're really not willing to do what it takes to get to the point of pure consciousness and the flesh would die in the process. Personally, I like growth of the spirit and soul and that can include all the money and love available.
Self realization is more the ability to be critical of the self. "If I act this way, people will react that way". But if we are a gentle person, it sounds more like this. "If I don't make waves and accept what I cannot apprehend as true, people will respect me". So I see it more as a form of respect for all things, not just the self. In other words, act as if you are not important and treat everyone else like they are. In turn, they are more likely to accept you. Enlightenment is not an escape, but a realization and following it up by acting accordingly to it.
The ego is necessary for survival. It is realizing we have ego and seeing through it. That is death of the illusion of self.
Depending on "who" you talk to, to cause the "ego-death" you would have to wipe out the conscious mind. And if that was done, then there would be no self awareness.
As for "dark night of the soul"? What soul are you talking about?
I have never heard of ego death having anything to do with wiping out the concious mind.
Obviously you don't believe in the things I do. I get that. Why even bother responding?
To help clear up confusion of the belief formed. Why else?
The conscious mind is considered to be the "ego" of a person. It IS the "I" in Individuality.
If you wipe it out- "ego-death", then there would be no self awareness. If there's no self awareness, then you or anyone else will not be able to distinguish anything at all, either within self or outside of self.
Then we are talking about two different things. I am talking about a loss of your sense of self, including your personality. Not your ability to think.
It's been said that when we "cease mutative association with awareness, they resolve into dormncy in Nature, and the indweller shines forth as pure consciousness."
This is from the BonGiovanni translation of part 4: Realizations, taken from the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali - The Threads of Union. But this has more to do with total enlightenment than ego death, IMO.
Cagsil might be right. Maybe the approach would be attempting to resolve all conflict between the id and the super-ego. And to find a harmony that negates the need for defense mechanisms in the ego. Ego itself may not be something you can kill off.
Total unadulterated BS. Most of the ego is in the sub-conscious. How do you equate ego to self-awareness? I don't believe in Ego death either, it is more chaining the bugger, and, controlling your emotions (And ego is part of that) self awareness doesn't disappear.
The illusion that we are all seperate. As far as I can see, the universe is one organism and we are but one small aspect of it. It is one thing, not just random bits of everything else or it wouldn't be considered natural. Then it would just be a machine made of many small parts and would not be random at all.
Completely agree with this. But humans have a reasoning mind which sets them apart from most other bits of the universe and gives us objective reality. This goes back to the entire premise of the OP. This won't really make sense to us because we can't comprehend the beginning of mind as we know it but mind itself arises from egoism. In this sense, DD's point has validity. The bottom line is it is all held together by cause and effect.
I see it more as a refusal to actualy look with unbiased eyes. People tend to see what they were taught to see, based on another's "empirical" evidence. Now there is nothing wrong with pointing out something and saying what one thinks it is, but the student should still be critical enough to see it from more than one angle.
Really? Are you claiming that somehow the conscious mind is nothing more than a projection of one's sub-consciousness?
The human consciousness has two parts, it's part of living in a world where duality is accepted, due to cause and effect rules. The human consciousness exists on two levels, if not more depending on awareness.
The two I'm talking about is basic sub-consciousness exists in the right side of the brain and where the conscious mind exists in the left side.
The left side does the most thinking because is uses reasoning and logic. The right side stores everything touched, smelt, felt, tasted, seen or heard.
The sub-consciousness has all access to that knowledge and experiences. The conscious mind doesn't.
Basic philosophy teaching of Jesus. Jesus taught that one was to think of others before self. This is absence of all ego. Before you can recognize your own ego, you must first grow into awareness of self and your surroundings. To be able to recognize "what is right for the sake that it is right" is seeing beyond one's own self. I hope that answered your question.
Self awareness is diminished by ego and ego suppresses conscience.
So conscience trumps self-awareness? I think I can agree with that line of thinking.
DD - Respectfully disagree. The ego is the part that is most in touch with external reality making it more a part of the conscious than the subconscious. It governs our personality and behavior. Your football analogy was more to the point.
For instance. Got a favorite sports team? Let's say, the Steelers. The quarterback has the ego, he comes back and throws it down range, the wide receiver breaks away from the gangbang coming down the field and ...Whap! Snatches the ego right outta the air. TOUCHDOWN!!! Not everybody can be the quarterback, though that is what the other members of the team wanted to be growing up. Not everybody can catch that touchdown and score the winning point, another area boys grow up thinking about. At some point, every member of that team had to come to grips with some aspect of their ego, put it in check, and know that they would always be a supporting player in the big game. Still important, but it is a lotta ego to put in check, and it has to stay in check. I realized that you can't remove EGO on a death basis, simply because it is part of our genes. Most aspects of an individual ego are not genetic.
I think your ego and love of self is what helps you to love others including religion. At no point in religion are you told you don't matter...guidelines are set for you to help you find your way. "Thou shalt love they neighbor as thyself." (Leviticus) If there was no "ego-self" why would you need these guidelines? Sharing or working with others is not the death of your ego but a further expression of your ego and the good in you and your desire to help others.
I was kind of thinking along the same lines but trying to absorb what everyone else was saying. I agree that we can't love others until we love ourselves, in the true sense of the word. Therefore, if we lose ourselves, personality, ego, whatever part of the mind that governs the sense of self, we become 'wild', without regard for anything but survival.
Since there are no clear and provable moral values, the only thing we have is love. This is the trump card over everything. When we can learn this one thing and apply it to everything else we experience, we walk in peace and clarity.
In my culture the "ego" is the part of a personality that we strive to turn off so that we have less obsticals to hinder our spiritual growth.
Being raised a Native traditional male we practise ego reduction by learning that the ego is part of us that contributes to such bad habits such as envy, greed, vanity and such.
We strive to keep our ego in check so that we may free ourselves of the temptations that surround us daily, to diminish the ego is to free the spirit of unwanted material desires.
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