Does our ego serve us, or can it hinder our personal development?
Eckhart Tolle says “one of the jobs of the ego is to blame others. Another job of the ego is to make yourself feel guilty. Both of these things strengthen your sense of identity, they are negative senses of identity. And the ego loves to have a strong sense of identity and no sense of identity is stronger than the negative one, where you condemn yourself for something.”
From article: Eckhart Tolle On Guilt and Ego (Excerpted from Oprah and Eckhart Tolle’s A New Earth Online Class Podcast transcript).
In his post The War on Ego, Steve Pavlina writes, “Because the egoless state of being can feel so elevated and joyful, some people choose to point fingers at the ego as the cause of all human suffering. They argue that the world would be a much better place if we could simply let go of ego identification and identify ourselves as pure God or Source energy instead… or perhaps relinquish individual identity altogether.
“Although War on Ego has a positive intention behind it, in practice it’s rather misguided.”
“I agree that ego identification is a big problem for a lot of people. When you think your physical life is all you have, you tend to become very attached to it. Protecting, defending, and securing your physical identity occupies a significant part of your time, energy, and attention. If anyone interferes with the security of your physical life, they become a threat.
“This creates stress and often leads to some form of violence. Violence is the natural consequence of a posture of self-defense.
“I disagree that the solution to ego-based problems is to denigrate, eliminate, or transcend the ego itself. The ego isn’t the problem. The ego serves a very useful function, and it’s a mistake to try to tune it out.”
Also see his article Steve Pavlina on Personal Development for Smart People.
His book: Personal Development for Smart People: The Conscious Pursuit of Personal Growth.
[Staged photo of Charlize Theron, from my article Ego and Creativity. She was widely praised for her egoless preparation and performance in the movie “Monster.”]