death of ego and depression

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death of ego and depression

Postby FrequencyHolder » Thu Jan 29, 2009 3:36 am

Hello all. This is my first post here. I have been reading posts on the forum for a while now, but haven't had the courage to post.

Seems I'm encountering some, er, issues on my path here.

After reading A New Earth, I have come to realize that nearly all of the critical decisions in my life have been made in the grips of ego. I realize the disaster these unconscious decisions have caused in my life. I'm currently unemployed and am in desperate need of a job, but I'm having a hard time living day to day life without the presence of ego. It's as though I've lost the primary motivating force in my life, and now I'm now I'm just sort of, well, stuck. Maybe this sounds strange. I'm new to this, so please bear with me.

I'm finding it harder and harder to live in a largely unconscious world. I realize every friendship/relationship I've ever had was egoic. I feel very alone and strange in this world. I have little motivation to do much of anything----even leave the house. The funny thing is-----I'm okay with that----but everyone else in the world is not. I'm okay with being somewhat of a hermit and recluse, and not really 'doing much with my life' (according to everyone else's standards of what 'doing something with your life' is).

It's really become quite trying lately. My ego flares up, and I question whether I've made correct decisions, what to do now, and how to proceed without the ego----I truly have few, if any, interests where there is no ego involved. Anyway, I apologize if this thread sounds crazy.
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Re: death of ego and depression

Postby weopposedeception » Thu Jan 29, 2009 4:08 am

You are not alone. I came into this search for truth with the idea I was going to "get" something, little did I know it is more about losing things, the things that are false. I was told that some fear and confusion is par for the course.
Don't worry about ego, no ego. Just realize that life is living itself perfectly, no matter what you think.
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Re: death of ego and depression

Postby doug » Thu Jan 29, 2009 4:33 am

I'm new to this as well and from what I have learned this is to be a gentle shift from a world of wants and fears to one of observation and awareness of what is in the present moment...unhappy? ok...ego wants to control? ok...need a job? ok...

try accepting absolutely everything just the way it is, including what you perceive as your ego, and observe...the ego does want to transform what is into problems for you and it's part of the illusion to believe that it is succeeding

there is much better assistance here in the forum that should be coming along soon my friend...don't despair...
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Re: death of ego and depression

Postby randomguy » Thu Jan 29, 2009 4:38 am

Hi FrequencyHolder, I just want to say that there is nothing in your post that sounds crazy.

I find it a murky task sometimes to determine if my actions are ego motivated or not. But one way or another the actions happen, and that is reality. There is what is real, and there are thoughts about what is actually real or not, and maybe even judgments about our thoughts, and maybe some negative feelings around identifying with those thoughts and judgments. All I can do is question my mind and surrender to what is, accept reality as often as possible.

I liked the part in A Thousand Names for Joy in which B. Katie describes that there is nothing more satisfying than obeying the impulses to do things like wash the dishes. (My wording is way off but...) The urge comes to do the dishes, and she gets up and does them, with no resistance (such as who was supposed to do them etc.)

I think I'm reminded of that because when we second guess our action or non-action, we can maybe get lost in our head.

I'm finding it harder and harder to live in a largely unconscious world.


My friend, the world is awesome and it is all here for you. Feel free to take action. Your ego will resist. It is supposed to. Surrender, question your mind, observe your thoughts, identify what is real, accept the feelings that come.
Do the yellow-rose petals
tremble and fall
at the rapid's roar?
- Basho
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Re: death of ego and depression

Postby Juno » Thu Jan 29, 2009 5:26 am

Welcome to the forum.

It seems to me the ego is what's telling you all of these things. What you are Presence is never stuck etc.. Presence is fluid. Try to simplify. Realize that Presence is always there before you go to look for it. When you tell yourself something negative you can guarantee who's doing the talking. Ego isn't all about motivation. It's simply what you are identifying with. Right now you are identifying with lack of motivation, feeling stuck, that every relationship was egoic etc.. When really the Awareness that you are is looking out of your eyes reading these words just watching your little me say all of these things. Turn your attention inward. What does that awareness feel like in your body? You can answer that question. I would be interested in hearing.
Glad you are here.
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by thinking of something you create an entity and by thinking of nothing you create another. Let such erroneous thinking perish utterly, and then nothing will remain for you to go seeking!
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Re: death of ego and depression

Postby eputkonen » Thu Jan 29, 2009 6:54 pm

Who said you have to live with NO EGO?

The ego is not the enemy and something that should be rid of. The greatest of teachers still had an ego...or else they would not answer when their name was called. One can not answer to a name without some ego. One can't function in the world without some ego.

The point was never to be totally rid of the ego...the point was not to be fooled by the ego. If one identifies with the ego and is fooled by it, then there is suffering...life is problematic...etc.

Actually, because you things as problematic ("issues")...that is ego. Who, but the ego, could have problems or issues?
Unfortunately, you seem to be taking an idea to the wrong direction...that is "I have little motivation to do much of anything----even leave the house." This is like discovering life is a game or a dream and then loosing all interest, motivation, etc. On the other hand, if one realizes it is a game or a dream, one could enjoy it and make the most out of it. Really get into the game or dream...instead of rejecting it.
Namaste,

~ Eric Putkonen
@EngagedNondual on Twitter
Blog at http://www.EngagedNonduality.com - Insights into Nondualism and Living Awake & Engaged
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Re: death of ego and depression

Postby domokato » Thu Jan 29, 2009 7:46 pm

Great responses so far.

FrequencyHolder wrote:I'm finding it harder and harder to live in a largely unconscious world. I realize every friendship/relationship I've ever had was egoic. I feel very alone and strange in this world.

Perhaps you are resisting that the world is largely unconscious, and you feel it should be another way? But it can't be. It is what it is right now. I recognize that most all of my friendships are shallow, but that doesn't stop me from enjoying them. In fact, since awakening I enjoy them even more. And now I am more open to form deeper connections with them, although they may not realize it yet. If you feel alone and strange then you have created a sense of separation within you between yourself and "others", when in fact you and others are one, in more than one way. When you are in a state of acceptance of "others", there is nothing left to do but enjoy life and enjoy the others as part of your life.

Welcome to the forum :)
~housecat
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Re: death of ego and depression

Postby FrequencyHolder » Thu Jan 29, 2009 9:57 pm

Thank you for all of your replies. I found them most helpful. So I see what you're saying that the ego serves some function in our lives----however, do we reach a time when there is a much diminished need-----if any----for ego? Apparently Eckhart's ego died the night he had the transformation----so he survives without ego, right?


Who was it---Ram Dass----who said if you think you are so enlightened, go live with your parents for a week. Well, due to my financial situation and inability to find a job, I've been staying with my parents for a month and a half, and there's no end to that in site at this point. Enlightened? Ha! Never claimed to be enlightened but also never expected to be hovering on the edge of insanity. Somehow my mother and I trigger each others pain bodies almost constantly. I often find myself trying to avoid her to the point where I'll seal myself off in a room just so I don't have to be around her. I feel terrible for this, but she has a dense, dense pain body----probably one of the densest pain bodies I know of. I am sometimes successful in interactions with her through non-reactivity, but I have to be completely, 100% present the entire time I am in contact with her----even just in the same room with her---it's quite exhausting, really, and it feels very inauthentic. Adding the the unconsciousness, she's also an alcoholic. I'm sorry, I know I'm complaining and that complaining will be of no good; however, I'm very much monitoring my presence and in doing so this particular case has been eating on me quite a bit.

Thank you again for all of your replies. I hope my posts have not been too personal----wasn't sure if people discuss their everyday struggles and how they stay present in them in this much detail or not. If not, do accept my apologies.
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Re: death of ego and depression

Postby Juno » Thu Jan 29, 2009 11:09 pm

I recently posted about my Mom too who is an alcholic. For me I'm not good at stalling when I'm asking for insight. I put it out there. We are not the only ones with whatever issues we may have so to be direct I don't see as a problem.

Ramana Maharshi said to get rid of your ego would be like trying to get rid of your shadow.

This is a teaching from Catherine Ingram on coexiting awareness. It's wonderful. You can download the whole teaching on itunes. I recommend it highly : )

Sometimes when our minds are agitated we think we can't have peace and we spend a lot of time trying to quiet our minds. It's practically impossible. So we feel like a failure and we feel that we can't really know peace. We have the idea of peace linked up with a quiet still mind and a situation where there are no problems. It just isn't that way. If your peace is contingent on a quiet mind and "no problems" you won't experience much peace. All kinds noise and difficulties, sadnesses, dissapointments this is the nature of life. To deny it is cruel to yourself. The question is is it possible for there to be aggitation in the mind and a container of silence that holds that aggitation. Is it possible to have a lot of problems yet feel peace through out? Even though you experience the problems as problems. Even though you may feel a lot of agitation around those problems. Is it possible to have that happening simultaneously while having peace? So consider coexisting awareness. Where there is awareness of difficulties of sadnesses of the incredible shocking cruelty in the world and the stupidity of human kind continuing to wage war and all kinds of crazieness. That all of this agitation that we feel coexists in awareness with this vast field of silence of quiet of peace of harmony of love. Our heart intelligence can easily contain these two types of awareness.

Monica
by thinking of something you create an entity and by thinking of nothing you create another. Let such erroneous thinking perish utterly, and then nothing will remain for you to go seeking!
Huang Po
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Re: death of ego and depression

Postby eputkonen » Fri Jan 30, 2009 12:28 am

FrequencyHolder wrote:Thank you for all of your replies. I found them most helpful. So I see what you're saying that the ego serves some function in our lives----however, do we reach a time when there is a much diminished need-----if any----for ego? Apparently Eckhart's ego died the night he had the transformation----so he survives without ego, right?


It is not about reaching a time when there is a much diminished need...there already is much diminished need. Most are overly egoic, and worse yet - are fooled by the ego and identify with it.

As for Eckhart...if you called his name would he answer? Yes, of course. So Eckhart still has an ego...it is just not of the same quantity or quality that most people experience. More importantly on the night he had the transformation, he no longer could be fooled by what ego remained.
Namaste,

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Re: death of ego and depression

Postby domokato » Fri Jan 30, 2009 1:24 am

eputkonen wrote:More importantly on the night he had the transformation, he no longer could be fooled by what ego remained.

Eckhart has claimed that he doesn't have an ego. But I think he just isn't fooled by his ego anymore, which, in his mind, is pretty much the same thing. It just depends on how you define ego.

It is useful to follow the definitions of masters for a while, but there comes a time to find out for yourself what things mean to you. :)
~housecat
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Re: death of ego and depression

Postby FrequencyHolder » Fri Jan 30, 2009 3:57 am

thanks for your replies.

I truly wonder if all depression then is just the pathological nature of the ego? Or is there really a clinical depression that no matter the degree of disidentification with the ego still remains in place?
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Re: death of ego and depression

Postby mistral » Fri Jan 30, 2009 5:31 am

Maybe the word depression is depressing....perhaps when you are 'down' you are really in place where insights and revelations are incubating in the darkness and stillness of your being....Important things may be happening in those down times, if you let them....I think the downs are actually really good...and not something to be fought with...somehow our society has labeled anything that is not laughing and chatting and so called 'happy' ( I am very sure True Happiness looks nothing like what most people think it is supposed to look like) I am very sure that True Happiness is something more like a deep and abiding balance and an inner joy that is sort of like 'between you and the Sacred Mystery' and it is just yours and yours alone and something people would NOT notice. More like a very calm contentment.

Perhaps we need to look at 'depression' as something perfectly perfect just as it is...and that it is serving us for Good in some way....

Here is something my friend William Samuel had in one of his audio tape recordings....I will share it with you here:

"But, anyway, I was in Cade’s Cove and I was in the midst of ups and downs, I would have a beautiful day, I could see nothing wrong with anything, and then it would be followed with days that were depressing, I could see nothing good about anything. I’m told that the valleys follow the mountain top experiences and while I’m in the valley, I can say, ‘well, I am bursting a new spiritual insight’, and it was true, it was true, the anguish was always followed with a new birth of life, new birth of understanding and it appeared, as the bible says, that I was in the throws of childbirth, each time, birthing a new glimmer of truth. I began to enjoy the downs because I said, ‘well, this is a real downer, this anguish itself, this is hell, but look at the light that it’s giving birth to. The throws of childbirth like this must be an enormous glimpse of new light and understanding,’ and oh, it would be. But sometimes the downers were awful, and I can recall that right after came the melody, the experience that I recorded in "The Melody of The Woodcutter and The King…" Then the very evening following that incredible experience of insight and Light, I wanted to jump off the mountain I had climbed, and would have, I think.

Okay, what about all this anguish, and what about these up and downers, and how is it possible to stay on the mountaintop forever? It isn’t necessary to stay on the mountaintop forever, and no one ever has, nor is anyone expected to, that is, in the tangible experience. But the truth is awareness is the mountain and all there is to the mountain and it is also all there is to valleys and it understands them and it understands the purpose of it.

"Suppose one were to be on the mountaintop of elation continually, he would, like Plotinus, write a book that no one would understand or ever understand. Who can understand the birds or mountaintop experience? The only one that possibly could would be another standing on the mountain alongside at the same time. Who can hear the words of the mountaintop experience down in the valley? No way can they hear such a distant cry. So, Plotinus, the mountaintop experience, give birth to the words that are mystical, that are purely so clearly beyond the intellect and its understanding that the intellect is totally baffled, and perhaps, if the intellect is willing to lie down for a time and let the heart have full reign we would understand the purpose of 'valleys' serve."

".......Truth, but is not a lifting up to the Light at all. It is much more a rapid stripping away of the mortal shell, leaving the Real exposed. It is an uncovering of the Light of Identity which has been here as 'us' all the while. It is the return of sensitivity in all its aspects. It is the CHILD uncovered again, stripped of all intellectual veneers. its worldly vestures ripped away. Without doubt this work appears to uncover the Child we are and we stand naked, exposed, defenceless, hypersensitive, our perception extremely acute again."

Those quotes are from my friend. He wrote some wonderful stuff...you can find some more of his work at his website: http://www.williamsamuel.com

Hope this is helpful to you, Mistral
Last edited by mistral on Fri Jan 30, 2009 6:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: death of ego and depression

Postby HermitLoon » Fri Jan 30, 2009 5:06 pm

William Samuel was quite well known,but he never encouraged a following. He would go to great lengths to stop any personal veneration. In William's words saying "To whatever extent I allow Samuel to be the object of praise and veneration (instead of God-self) to that same extent I create the tangible situation which must appear to bring Samuel down in the eyes of the venerator. That is self-flagellation I can do without. It is difficult enough already for the few of us on earth who have been given the task of waging worldwide battle against the power of belief. Most tenacious among those beliefs is the insanity that one must be either a leader or a follower. Allness leads what? Singleness follows whom? The Seminal Idea discloses Identity to be nothing less than the Ineffable's very own Self-awareness! Every grain of sand and star in the heavens shouts the proof of this fact. Every flower that blooms and wild bird that flys verifies the changelessness of this fact. When the story is told properly--and listened to as a child listens--the individual awakens to DOMINION, to his birthright, his heritage from the beginning, and there is no more need of teachers. SOMEONE must make the honest statement in such a manner, and at this time that one is me--and shall be--until it comes to me to do otherwise. Tell me, if on the world scene I have been successful in disclosing DOMINION to those who have come to me, would this produce a following of sycophants? No. We are a camaraderie of living Light and love to whom the entire world will turn when our time has come. Like LaoTse who lived his Light silently and alone while working square in the middle of the teeming scholasticism of his day, we avoid human entanglements and personal popularity like the plague. We honor the Light that is Life, that every person is. We many very well appreciate a mirror that speaks to us with clarity and honesty--and we may consider that mirror unique among mirrors--but the authority lies with the awareness that looks into that mirror, and not the mirror."


:D
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Re: death of ego and depression

Postby FMM » Fri Jan 30, 2009 8:07 pm

When I read this I thought, "wait, did I write that?". Perhaps I did and then totally forgot all about it. That's how eerily similar it was with my situation. I asked this same question elsewhere and it was suggested to me that many times apathy will mask itself has peace. The two couldn't be more opposite. Apathy is me totally wrapped up in my story, "poor little me". Peace is the timeless I. Emotionally, apathy saps all your energy, like a black hole. Peace, is total projection of energy. It is life living though you.

We are the dance and life is the dancer. It takes a lot of energy to subdue life from dancing through us. It can be so exhausting. It pushes you into depression. Do not resist the dancer. Do not question the dance and you will begin to enjoy the show. And remember, when you begin to identify with the storyline, you being repressing the life that was intended to shine through you.

Think of you life as a young child attending Disneyworld for one day. This is it, one day only. Do you get wrapped up with how this person cut in front of you or how that person made fun of you or worry that there's only seven hours to closing and it's just not fair. No, you're solely interested in how much fun you can stuff into one day. Well, that's how your current existence is. Forget about calendar days. Think of your day as this present moment. Your Being, the timeless I, will have to leave this amusement park (this dance). Do you really want to sit in the corner until you hear the words, "closing time"?

No? Of course you don't. Say these words to yourself to move forward; I accept the world as it is. I allow life to shine through me as it will.

Enjoy the dance.
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