' The Ego's Addiction to Pain and Struggle '...


Make no mistake about it: Egos are addicted to pain. They’re addicted to struggle. In fact, egos tend to bond, in some part, through pain and struggle. When you have a conversation with somebody—a friend or a stranger—and they tell you the most wonderful, glorious thing that ever happened to them in their life, you’ll probably be interested. You’ll probably listen, and maybe you’ll even celebrate with them. But if you’re like most people, when that same person tells you the worst, most terrible thing that ever happened, you’ll start listening even closer. It’s like you’re being pulled into the reality of that person’s inner life. This is very telling.

Egos tend to bond in pain, not in happiness.
I’m not saying there’s no happiness at all in the egoic state of consciousness; of course, even while within it, we can and do experience moments of happiness, joy, and relative peace. So it wouldn’t be true to suggest that to be caught within the imagination of ego is all bad. If it was all bad, nobody would remain caught for long. Part of the challenge is that the experience of being led by our egos is both good and bad. There are times when you’re very accepting of life, and there are times when you’re very rejecting of life. This back and forth of acceptance and rejection, of pushing and pulling, of “I love” and “I hate,” this is what keeps our consciousness caught in the ego, and this is what makes us so prone to being sucked into the vortex of suffering.

But we all have the seed of awakening within us. This awakening does not require you to totally disengage from your mind or even from your ego. The very notion that there is something you need to get rid of is a notion that belongs to the mind, to the ego itself, because minds and egos divide life. What I’m speaking about is not division at all. You are simply being invited to wake up from a trance. The less you push your mind away, the easier it is to wake up from it. The conflict of getting frustrated with your mind, your suffering, is what holds your mind in a limited view of things. It doesn’t matter why you’re in conflict. It doesn’t matter what you’re denying. It doesn’t matter what in yourself you’re struggling to change. The mere fact that you’re struggling guarantees that your consciousness will not be able to wake up from its state of limitation.

~ Adyashanti ~
Falling into Grace

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