Cast Off This Ego


Sri Swami Sivananda

This article is a chapter from the book Yoga And Realisation.

The so-called bewildered and tumultuous world with its never ending tale of toil and tears is in reality a majestic university of wisdom wherein everyone learns from the living book of life of their own as well as that of philosophers of realisation, of saints and sages, of divine teachers and holy masters. They that put forth their own ego shall learn nothing in this grand university and all that they have shall be taken and they shall be left forlorn. The man of ego loves his own ignorance; he glories in his own foolishness and attaches much importance to his perishable body and thereby he exposes himself to the winds of adversity, storms of woes and strokes of fate and affliction. He is filled with nescience and in his audacity, he disobeys the Law of Life; he shall have no admission into the portals of Eternal God and Supreme Felicity; he will be imprisoned in his own cocoon of misery and shall never be let out into boundless Empyrean Blessedness.

Looking through the wrapped perspective of his own ego, man has made this earth a hell of gloom and death, torture and frustrations. Looking through the medium of his own illusions and sensuous mind, he has made this temple of happiness, this world, into a den of anguish and grief, terror and forlornness. Laws of darkness and death rule him and not that of light and life. Staying in his own ego, man invites the invasion of sins and annihilation.

Wisdom appears to him as folly, purity as impurity, perfection as imperfection, humility as cowardice, meekness, weakness, service as attachment and passion, compassion as hypocrisy, and everything else appears just the opposite to the man’s perverted mind intoxicated with the wine of ego.

The man of ego is ruled by vanity, he is governed by utter pride; hatred grips him, folly sways him, delusion sits in his very intelligence, evils hover round him and his steps lead him into the realms of denser ignorance and ruin. But his understanding being clouded and his discrimination being obscured by his own prejudiced preconceptions, he is unaware of his own sorry state. On the contrary, he feels himself well off and all knowing and surveys the rest of humanity with condescending eye as unfortunate creatures toiling foolishly far below him in evolution’s scale. Such is the self delusion of the ego. Where the egotism is not, there is all blessedness, all goodness, all glory and there can one find God.

To the one devoid of ego, the whole world is a haven of rest, a realm of peace and kingdom of abounding all happiness. For him there is no more distress. He is purified, exalted and illumined. He sees no sin anywhere and no evil can come near him. Nothing is hidden from him; the Truth stands before him in all its splendour and radiance; the mysteries are revealed to him and all the secret workings of the universe are made known to him. He who has no ego and who has surrendered himself to God is the master of every power and force that there is, for all powers and forces are under God. Egoless man’s is the supreme freedom and perfection.

Too difficult is it to sacrifice the ego, but unless it is sacrificed, no vision of truth and no sight of God is possible of revelation. Sell away your lower self and purchase the Supreme Self. Withdraw your mind from justifying your position; serve your enemies; sacrifice all your rights if you wish to rule; love those who hate you; resist not if you wish to conquer; sacrifice all that you feel belongs to you. Seek nothing if you wish to have everything. Conquer yourself if you wish to have the Highest Freedom. Take no shelter under ego if you wish to be protected by the Supreme Power, the Almighty God.

Let one annul all forms of ego and he shall see the Divine Truth reflected in his own heart within; he shall be illumined with the Divine Knowledge forthwith. Let the ego be destroyed; lose yourself in the love of all; negate yourself and merge yourself in the service of all and thereby you shall see that you have become one with the Supreme Lord who is all in this vast universe.

Empty yourself of your egoism and all the impurity connected with it and you shall see the inexhaustible Abundance of Prosperity, of God filling you to the brim, nay, filling you so much that you cannot contain it any longer. Sacrifice a little of your ego, be it even so little a fraction of it, that in itself shall be sufficient pretext for God to inundate your being with His Delight, His Power and His Light. Such is His Divine Love and Compassion. Deny yourself a little and be indifferent towards the turmoil of outward happenings, towards the external surge of like and dislike, pathos and pleasantry, and the seemingly crushing stress of life and fall back upon the Lord, for you shall be let out into the Blessedness, Peace and Wisdom and eternal joy.

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