In every “spiritual” gathering, the main topic talked about to “evolve” into a “higher” consciousness is related with dissolving ego.
Why does ego develop?
Because we live in a society. A society has rules, laws, traditions, beliefs, taboos, hang ups… all of those are inherited by the members of that society.
When a child is born his ego is minimal. Even though he may bring a baggage from another existence, he needs the “right” environment to develop ego, just as a seed needs the right conditions to flourish.
In a society we have comfort, certain security, some assurance. Those traits are enough to numb an individual from being connected with “reality,” Nature, Life.
Therefore, it has been observed by many “saints” and “illuminated” ones the need to leave a society. Basically that means to be alone.
When alone, many of the things that we take for granted do not have any meaning anymore.
Am I a man or a woman?
That could be answered only in comparison with others. Am I rich or poor? Same thing. Am I beautiful or ugly? It does not matter anymore.
That “going away from society” is how we live through experience most of the teachings of religions. For example: You may repeat many times – “I am a soul.” Thus, I am not rich ugly man or a woman. However, that is merely a mental paradigm. An idea which may need to be “practiced.” There is no way to realize “I am a soul” unless that happens to you, which does not depend on your DOING.
When you are alone, there is no need practice anything.
Gautama Buddha, left society when his child was born. He was a wondering man, like an animal. So did Mahavira and even Jesus. They had their time away from society just to discover their “reality” away from all the things that our society has given us.
Can you live without TV? Can you live without reading a book? Can you live without the internet?
Those are artificial gifts from society. Those things will shape up our personality, our ego. However, those things are not “bad,” although they could create a dependency in many. Those “progress” of society are truly an opportunity to discover our hidden addictive, needy personality. Enjoyment of those things reside in freeing ourselves from our attachments.
Discovering our “truth” will happen when we are away from those things, which we take for granted.
When a person lives in a “black or white” consciousness, their awareness of being inauthentic due to a surrounding society, will move them into a reactionary movement:
“This society is bad, filthy. We need to create a new society.”
That is how many religions have started, many “ashrams,” many “collective gatherings.”
Their belief is that they have the “right” laws, commandments, etc. for they had realized “evil.”
Thus, they create a new society with many opposite values of the previous one, but the structure of the new “creation” comes out of the same frame of mind. “Black or White.” Thus this “new” society will be same as the rejected one.
The same hierarchy with different labels. The same consciousness underneath the word “change.”
Although being in Nature and away from the “technological advanced” society is the most spontaneous way to discover our own truth; that is no longer necessary or practical.
All we need to be aware of, is the work of our own mind. After all, the mind is the open door, getting all the “goodies” from our society.
How to become aware of something, which we believe to be us?
Be away from the crowd. The mind is used to the noise, words, background sounds which bring a sense of company, that is why silence becomes important.
Physical silence is the first step to observe the mind.
Slowing down our DOINGs, our tasks, our “busy” schedule, is the second step.
Slowing down our breathing through conscious movement, may be the third step.
At that point, we may be able to recognize that we are not the mind, that we are not a personality, or a belief system.
Then the mind slows down. The clouds of thoughts will not pass by so quickly. That is ill labeled as “silence of the mind, “ which will bring inner peace. It is actually “no-mind.”
In other words, when we become empty, we are full.
Having tasted that, we could go back to the comfort of a society. We could play the game and “retire” when necessary.
We could enjoy the game of being “busy,” while knowing that it is just a game.
Stress is over unless we “think” about it. 🙂
Is the above too hard to DO?
There is no DOING involved. It is awareness.
Something easier? 🙂
Surrender your ego through love.
Some religions will present God to be the “beloved.” That is only sentimental stuff. It is not that. There is no “beloved” when YOU are not there.
Love is the death of that which we call “I.” 🙂