I found your site by chance (or sychronicity I think). I was looking for advice on how to build an articles based website and came across one of your blog pages. I'm also a seeker and here I am.
This is the page I came across... How to Build a High-Traffic Web Site (or Blog)
As I was getting to know your site, I came across this quote....
Character-building ideas |
Honesty – See how honest and open you can make your character. Be honest in your dealings with others. Stop pretending and hiding who you are. Share yourself openly with the world.
Courage – Continually push yourself to face your fears instead of shrinking from them. This will give your character more options.
Exploration – Experiment. Learn by trial and error. Step into the unknown and learn by doing. Develop an ego that loves to dive in and explore new things.
Service – Tune your ego in the direction of serving others, such that the stronger your ego becomes, the more you push yourself to help people. Make service to others part of your identity.
Acceptance – When you accept yourself as having a strong ego, you’ll be more willing to accept other strong people into your life as well instead of feeling you need to attack the strong in order to justify your own weakness.
Discipline – Develop an ego that identifies itself with good habits like regular exercise and solid productivity.
Connection – Develop your social skills, so you can connect with others easily. Learn how to surround your ego with social support that helps to refine your positive character qualities while chipping away at your unwanted attributes.
Notice that since these are character qualities, they can’t be taken away from you. You may lose your possessions, job, relationships, etc., but your character qualities are yours to keep.
Intelligence, not enlightenment
My gold standard for conscious living isn’t enlightenment. It’s intelligence.
If ego can be defined as the FALSE sense of self, then the excellent advice you're suggesting will actually not weaken the ego but the need for the ego will diminish and eventually drop. The choice isn't between a strong or weak ego but between needing one vs just being your true self. The context that I took "weakening the ego" was that through willpower, which is ego trying to change nature, we would be repressing the arrogance and forcing the humility. Both are actually strong egos. Renunciation is an ego endeavor of forced humility. The true renunciation happens after one knows self because then all the addictions and escapes we relied upon vanish and that looks like the traditional definition of renunciation. Anything forced is ego.
The web development page that brought me to your site really spoke for me. It was like I wrote it.
What an amazing and refreshing read!!
I do know that many people define common words differently and for me, to grow my intelligence is to grow away from needing the ego and that enlightenment isn't an ideal but actually what's left over once we cathart the false beliefs we have of life, including the ego. Enlightenment as a goal becomes a desire for the ego to have the ultimate definition of self. That's why it's so elusive. That path isn't chasing the goal but to cathart the false beliefs that imprison us mentally including all the definitions of self like patriotism and religion identification. I'm an ex-Christian...I'm just me now...loving and creative.
On another personal growth site I enjoy, the author made a great analogy about ego....it's the training wheels on the bike. To be able to ride the bike without training wheels is to know self. To not know self (e.g., thinking I'm an American Catholic, direct descendent of the Pilgrims with this family heritage, etc...) leaves us living a life of the fear of the unknown and the ego provides a false sense of knowing self, which artificially props us up, keeping us able to ride the bike with training wheels. With growing intelligence of life, of self, through learning what is false (culture, conditionings), the training wheels can be raised more and more and we grow to be able to handle more difficult life situations.
Anyone can remember the fear of riding the bike at first, when training wheels were needed, to the joy and freedom of being able to ride around without them. To grow intelligence is to grow away from fear and towards our innate joy of life.
And then to know self is to see that at our core, we are all loving and all creative and that ends the need for ego comparisons to define self. I can see that in me and in everyone. With that "eyesight" there's no more judgment and now only compassion as 99% of our "problems" are mental and self inflicted with the help of the egoists around us. I can't love another if I need him to be inferior to me for my own false sense of self and vice versa.
The true self exists, it's there, so my definition of ego is the false sense of self. In my ego lingo, growing intelligence leaves me more an individual and less clinging to ideas of self....I just let loose and be me and if others don't like it then that's their issue because chances are, my honesty is not supporting their false sense of self.
Thanks for letting me share and for providing your insights on this website!