Ego is an interesting thing
An artifact of the mind
Created by Freud
At the beginning of the 20th century
To describe one of the tripartite aspects
Of the mental sheath of man
Which governs and drives our behavior

And yet there have been many theories
Over the centuries and millennia
Since philosophy emerged
As the intellectual guidepost of civilized man

But it is the ego
Along with its counterparts the id and superego
Which we have adopted here in the West
To describe the various facets of mind
And how they drive our actions and interactions
And in turn how they coexist and intermingle
Not only within the individual
But how they in turn
Affect how men (and women) interact with each other

In the spiritual realm
The ego plays its part
As the force which identifies oneself with the body
Which provides the impetus for self preservation
And that which allows us
To live within the boundaries of society
The grand society of of our cities
And in the grand temple of our innermost being
This is the mamas and the buddhi of the Vedic philosophers
Which is described in depth in the works of Patanjali
Which has become so mainstream in the West

And yet ironically
As all the philosophical systems of the East
Teach us and have taught through the ages
Since the dawn of civilized man
And the creation of language and symbols
The greatest gift of the gods
That the ego, while serving a key purpose
In our individual survival
Must and should be subsumed
For the greater good of society as a whole
And ultimately for enlightenment itself
Where the ego is burnt up
In the fire of knowledge
And the individual ego
Is merged with the grand Ego
Of the great Mind of minds
The mental sheath to which we are all connected

This is the message of Jung in the end
That these grand archetypes
Which we find present
In all the civilizations and myths of the world
That have existed and will exist
In this age of man

In his view of the psyche
It is not the ego which dominates
But it is simply a reflection
Of the collective consciousness
Collective unconsciousness is what he called it
Which drives the deep imprints of our soul
Which is present deep within our minds
In the unconscious parts
Which in turn affect and drive
The conscious aspects of mind
Which provide the driving forces
And the impetus of our behavior
And how we integrate with others around us
With family and friends
And again with society as a whole

But the wisdom of the East
Goes one step further
Not only claiming that Jung’s collective unconscious
Is real and true
But that this manifested consciousness
To which we are all connected
In the deepest parts of our mind
This collective psyche
Which we see manifest in all the world’s mythology
As Campbell and others
Have so aptly and eloquently described
Is in fact the truest and realest
Of all phenomena

That the world of the spirit
Despite being hidden
Within the world of name and form
Is the dominant force
Which not only guides all of creation
Animate and inanimate
But guides our individual lives
In this complex and interrelated world of beings
Within which we are all fatefully bound

And enlightenment as these great sages call it
Or nirvana or samadhi as others have named it
In the grand wisdom of the East
With has survived for all these years
Is essentially the total sublimination of this ego
For the grander ego of the greater Self

To which we all can tap into
And to which we are all heirs
And once fully recognized
Once we have lost what we thought of ourselves
In the grand consciousness of awareness itself
Once we are are fully connected as it were
Even if for the briefest of moments
And the true nature of the Soul
Is revealed to us in all its glory
And all its basic and elemental simplicity

And the world of the spirit is shown to our inner eye
And a glimpse is given
So that we may perhaps understand and comprehend
Through the grace of the Self of self
That this collective unconscious is Real
That our Soul and the collective Soul
Are one and the same

And in this realization
In this illumination
What we may find
If this grace of knowledge
Is bestowed upon us
Is that what is one is two
And what is two is three
And what is three is also One
This grand Trinity
Which has guided the Christian faith
Since the time of Constantine
In the last days of the Imperial Roman Empire
In their final interpretation of Christ the savior

This knowledge and awareness
Again if a glimpse can be seen
By the grace of the Lord himself
Can be our salvation
Not just in the next world
Not just to save us from our sins
Which began in the Garden on that fateful day

But can liberate us from the bondage
And the suffering that we all endure
In knowing truly and clearly
In the fire of Realization
That the wonder of all wonders
Is that the collective Soul IS the only reality
And this binds us and connects us all
All races, all creeds and all religions
As brothers and sisters alike
As cousins and family
In our collective home which we call Earth
Granted and gifted to us
By the grace of the nameless one
For us all to share
Not just with our human counterparts
But with the beasts and animals
And myriad of creatures
Which also call it home

So this ego that has been put forth
As the guiding principle of our lives
Must be seen in its true context
In order for liberation to be possible

And while intellectual knowledge in and of itself
Is a powerful and useful tool
It is only through true Realization
That these sublime truths
Of the collective Soul
Of the collective unconscious which binds us all
Can be truly understood

And in this knowledge
Our lives can be transformed
Such that balance and happiness
Can be found for each and every person
And in turn our place in our complex social structures
Can be fully understood
Such that harmony and kindness
And compassion in tunr
Can be practiced by each and every one of us
Not just for the good of the individual
So that they may lead
Healthy and ‘well-adjusted’ and happy lives

But for the good of humanity
For the good of nations
Not because it will save us from our sins
But because is the truth of truths
The most simple of axioms
Which underlies all bodies of knowledge
Which given not just science but religion as well

Because that which is within is without
And that which lies within our hearts
As the flame of life
Is the very same fire
Which burns within us all

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