EGO THE GREATEST HIDDEN ENEMY
By Swami Sivananda
The chief of man’s enemy is within himself. It is egoism. Ego co-exists with mind. When the mind perishes, ego also perishes. Chitta is subconscious mind. It is the mind-stuff. It is the storehouse of memory. Impressions (Samskaras) of actions are embedded here. It is one of the four parts or inner instruments of Antahkarana (inner organ), viz., mind (Manas), intellect (buddhi), subconscious mind (Chitta) and egoism (Ahamkara).
Mind is formed out of wind. So it is fleeting like the wind. Intellect is formed out of fire. Chitta is formed out of water. Egoism is formed out of earth.
In egoism is bondage. In egolessness is freedom.
Egoism is at the bottom of all great blunder. If there is no egoism, if the mind is free from desires and likes and dislikes, you will not again enter into this world of birth and death.
Ego is the veil between God and the soul. When the ego vanishes, then is the realisation of universality or cosmic consciousness. Egoistic assertion is a terrible disease. It separates you from God and your fellowmen.
Ego is the cause for the sorrows of life and miseries of the Samsara.
Burn this ego, through discrimination, Atmavichar or enquiry into the nature of Atman, or the Supreme Self and Samadhi. You will enjoy the immortal bliss of the Eternal. Slay egoism – your arch-enemy – through self-sacrifice, self- surrender, self-denial, service, humility, prayer, worship and identification with Atman.
Watch the mind. Mind is the slayer of the soul. Slay this mind ruthlessly through the sword of discrimination.
Fear, anger, greed, hatred, lust, jealousy are symptoms of an impure mind. Feeling of superiority and inferiority are rooted in egoism. They generate tensions between individuals. With the awakening of the mind, there arises consciousness of duality. Duality is ignorance. From duality arise fear, desire, etc.
Silence your senses and mind and commune with the Lord. You will enjoy eternal peace and bliss now. The mind is like a monkey jumping around. Let the monkey jump as much as it can. Wait and watch. Give it the rein. Meditate regularly. Each day the mind’s vagaries will become calmer and calmer. Only he is truly mighty who has conquered his mind or lower self. He who conquers the mind is the greatest of conquerors.