“I am on a spiritual path.” “I am in recovery.” “I am learning to love myself again.” “I am on a journey to find myself.” Do these sound familiar?
These days I hear people say these things a lot. And just to be clear, I am also doing all the above. But while on this journey, I have found that the hardest part is quieting the ego. The ego can be good and bad. Over the years I’ve realized that most of the time people use the bad ego.
The Big Bad Ego
I have used the bad ego to judge or compare myself to others or different situations. The bad ego wants me to believe that I have all the answers, which is so impossible. It is not very humble at times when it should be. It can see only from “my perspective.” The bad ego does whatever it wants with no care how it will affect anyone else. It cannot forgive. And it never looks at my side of a situation and says, “What can I do to fix this? What is my part?” The bad ego only looks at the faults of others.
The bad ego thinks that it is perfect but it is actually in fear. It has beliefs that are usually outdated. Sometimes it is usually addicted to something outside of itself. The bad ego will justify, get very angry when things do not go its way, and yell because it desperately needs to be heard. It will use other humans for sex, money, love, companionship, and whatever else it can get—the bad ego stops growing.
The Conditioned Mind
The conditioned mind is a subject I am fascinated with. The conditioned mind is stuck in this bad ego cycle. The spiritual path or the recovery path is coming to terms with how little we know. Read that a few times and let it sink in. To truly recover and be free from the damage of the bad ego, we have to fully comprehend how little we know.
Awareness of Birds
The spiritual path is a simple guide for complicated and conditioned minds. As I write this blog post, birds are chirping outside my window. I am aware of their existence right now. This whole world of dancing birds is happening just a few feet away. They have become a part of my morning meditation and existence.
Since I have become more aware of the birds, it feels as though there are so many more than before. When I first started this practice, only one or two birds sat on the telephone line or tree outside my office window; now there are hundreds. Were they there before? We can train our minds to see what we want to see. And life is happening right outside my window.
Things that sometimes I forget to notice—like my beautiful birds, the wind, and the sun—can be forgotten in my ego world. We are in a deep collaboration with the world. Its growth and expanse are so magical and endless.
Reboot Your Mind
Take a moment today and ask yourself, “Am I in my bad ego? Am I noticing the magic of this beautiful life all around me?” I would love to know what you notice differently when you look for the magic!
The conditioned mind is usually one of many beliefs and patterns that no longer serve us as we get older. The thoughts are outdated just as technology gets outdated. Our minds need growth and updating too. You know how you have to turn your phone off sometimes to let it reboot and update to give it a rest? Our minds are no different. And they require a lot more rebooting and new beliefs.
Turn off your mind today, put on some soothing music, get in nature, and let your conditioned mind reboot.