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Why does one have ego?
Author Acharya Prashant
Acharya Prashant
4 min
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Probing inside, I came Seeking the moon within me: Sifting the chaff from the grain. I went seeking The Like, Alike, Thou art Narayan. Thou art Narayan, then, Why this will-of-the-wisp?

~ Saint Lalleshwari

Question: Acharya Ji, Why do I have ego?

Acharya Prashant: Do not ask why does the ‘below the wisp’ or the ego or your personal center still exist. If you will ask why does it exist? The answer is your birth. It exists because you do.

When was the ego born? When I was born. As long as you keep taking yourself as the born one, as the one who took birth one day and going to die one day. The ego is definitely gong to remain.

So, if Parmeshwari (Questioner) asks, “Why do I have ego?” Do you see what comes before the ego?

Listeners: “I.”

AP: (Acharya Ji smiling), What is the question? Why do “I” have the ego?

“I” doesn’t even need to have the ego. The “I” is the ego. Till there is Permeshwari, there is bound to remain the?

L: “I.”

AP: Don’t you see what Permeshwari means? A body that is separate from the?

L: “You.”

AP: That is ego. As someone who is localized temporally and especially. Permeshwari is in this hall at 12 noon, had she been the Truth, she would have continued wherever she was. But at 3 PM she would be at the Ganga not here. So, she is localized.

Similarly, especially, at 12 noon because she is here so she cannot be at the Ganga. This is what is ego. A thing of time and space. A thing that is severely limited by time and space. And therefore, suffers. And is therefore debilitated. Even if you want to, you cannot be at the Ghat at this very time. And that you see, is at the center of a lot of your suffering.

Were you not limited in time? You would have immediately gone back to the past and corrupted it but you are limited in time. If you are here you can neither be in the nor in the future. If you were not limited in space then you would have controlled the entire universe by being present wherever you wanted to. Or maybe being present everywhere in the universe and therefore, being the universe itself. But you cannot do that and therefore, you suffer.

Do you now see what desire is? All your desires are limited to time and space. You could also say, “All your desires are related to your limitations in time and space”. Had you not been limited what have you desired? If you are the entire universe at all times, what is left to desire?

Therefore, as long as there is this (Indicating one straight direction by both hands), there would remain the below the-wisp (Indicating another direction by both hands).

Now, you have to see what do you want to do with this necessary limitation? That’s the human condition, no? This necessary, this inevitable limitation.

That is why those who have known, the Saints, they have said that it was not a great thing that happens to you, the human birth. But now, that it has occurred you better make the best you of it. But it would have been far-far better had you never really been… Now, that you have born, strive to come out of this insistent cycle of birth and re-birth and death.

In fact, that’s what is liberation. That’s how the orient has known liberation. Liberation from the … (making a continuous cycle by hand)

L: Cycle of birth and re-birth and death.

AP: Because the moment you are born, that is born from which you seek liberation. The moment you are born, you are born along with that from which you seek liberation. So, why be born at all?

Now, you better use it to the fullest. Live in a way that is directed towards freedom and it is equally rather much more possible to live in a way that strengthens your bondages.

Hence, be cautious.

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