Baba says, ‘just as both Bap and Dada are egoless and soul conscious, so you must follow the Father‘. When you do that, you will continue to make constant progress.
At the end of his final corporeal meeting with the children, Brahma Baba summarized the essence of the entire study in 3 words: incorporeal, viceless and egoless. While ego is one of the five main vices, he felt it essential to call it out separately. Why? because ego is the subtlest of all the vices. Anger, greed, attachment…I can see them in myself and so can others. But the ego is subtle. It sneaks in like a virus and before I even realize, the entire immune system has been compromised. I then end up on a hospital bed, so to speak, with a respirator!
And just when I think I’ve figured it out, the ego shows up stealthily again in a different form. There are many forms of ego. When we speak broadly, we use the word ‘body consciousness’ but in its most subtle form, it is ego.
In simple terms, the ego is a false perception I hold of myself. This false perception can be in the form of superiority or inferiority. And so by that definition, the doorway to ego is always ‘I’ and ‘mine’. The more ‘I’s and ‘mine’s I entangle myself in i.e. the bigger the web, the bigger the ego and the more deceived I am.
When I think of myself as superior, I feel I have special sanskars, a special intellect, special virtues, special talents or special powers and I always feel as if I am overqualified and underappreciated. The ego shows up as arrogance, intoxication, bossiness. I feel no one values me enough, no one gets me, the world is unfair, everyone is unfair. I put myself on a high pedestal and therefore, when I inevitably fall, it is pretty bad. I feel easily hurt, insulted, upset. This sensitive nature is a hallmark of the ego. On the flip side, when I think of myself as inferior, I am constantly comparing myself to others and feel disheartened. I think of myself as underqualified, as no good.
Either way, the ego isolates me. As I move along, even though I don’t make a specific mistake on a particular day or at a particular time, I sometimes experience a lack of happiness that I would expect to have. I don’t know why today there is loneliness, hopelessness or suddenly a storm of waste thoughts. I had Amritvela, I went to class, I served, I did my job, and so why is this happening? What is the reason? It’s the ego at work! there is somewhere a subtle form of arrogance. This is why I become unable to focus my heart on any task. There is only disinterest and I just feel sad. I then either want to be alone or go to sleep.
The ego thus separates me from God and from other souls and forces me to stay in my own head all the time. I think, think, think and the false narrative running in my mind affects my interactions when I do have them- I might smile but am grinding my teeth or thinking: you are not fit for this job but whatever! I am better but here you are! etc. Then I wonder why no one likes me! without realizing that all I am doing is further isolating myself. Even if there is any one form of ego- arrogance or bossiness or disheartenment or hurt…whatever, neither can I become a angel nor can I become incorporeal, because both of these require me to be subtle and light. Ego i.e. body consciousness only makes me heavy. And the killer is that when I am not alert, I can easily miss the ego. I have to be attentive to the signs.
The antidote to ego is humility. And the basis for humility of self-respect.
When I remember who I am, I remain humble. I am the soul- the pure, peaceful being, the child of God. And I have found God, I know Him and live with Him. When I stabilize myself in this true I – I am a soul and the true mine – one Baba and none other, I no longer expect, demand, sulk or grab. There is no more comparison when I have found that beyond which there is nothing more to be found. And I cannot remain content with just myself, I want to share with others. Every one of the Father’s praise is your self-respect, says Baba. When I stabilize myself in the awareness of any of these titles- as a the master remover of sorrow and bestower of happiness or as the image of support and upliftment, I cannot help but be humble.
This is how Brahma Baba was. He became the father of humanity, He embraced his role 100% and always put the children before himself. In doing so, he became the #1 victorious jewel, equal to God Himself. Baba says, follow father. Let him be your example.
Let there be humility in your attitude, drishti, in your words and also humility in your connections and relationships, He says. When I am stable in my self-respect, I will never say: ‘it wasn’t in my attitude, but the words just emerged’. I will always be the same inside and out. There has to be humility in all four. This is known as being an angel, says Baba.
While ego isolates and separates, humility is the easy method for claiming blessings from everyone’s heart. It gives me the ability to stay within the family and be open to learning. I see others as teachers providing me valuable insights about myself. This is the sign of soul consciousness- while the one with ego will point at the other person and blame, the one with knowledge, with spirituality will look at themselves and ask: that was interesting, why did I react that way? or what made me have this thought? They take the opportunity to check and change themselves.
While the ego makes me sad, true self-respect makes me constantly cheerful as I am intoxicated not by talents or skills but by the awareness of who I really am, of Whom I belong to and my elevated destiny. You know that you are becoming the masters of the world, says Baba, you have to remain constantly happy and make others happy too. It is your business to purify the impure. As is the Father’s task, so is yours.