Please enjoy the following Sahaja Yoga talk by Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi regarding the ego. Shri Mataji gave this speech on the 18th December 1978.
“The right hand side is the ego, which is real problem, you understand that, is a real colossal one you have to face them, I mean. I say anything small here and there I find the whole thing coming up onto my head like that. So what is the solution for a colossal ego? Colossal ego can only be conquered by forgiving others. Those who have ego must learn if they feel hurt they must say, “forgive.” Then another person hurts them, say, “forgive.” And not only forgive but ask for forgiveness. Both things should be done, more asking for forgiveness. You have to ask for forgiveness if you have too much of ego. It is very important. Because if you have too much of ego means what? That you have pampered it too much. That means you have used it too much. You have dominated people and that’s why you have such a lot of ego. If you have such a lot of ego you must all the time try to humble down in your heart. Now in the heart resides the Spirit. The ego, too much of ego in a person always takes you away from that Spirit. That’s why it is said, “Humble down in your heart.” The reason is, in the heart resides that part of yours which gets completely obliterated or forgotten once you start pumping up your ego.
But ego has its limits, it ends up into stupidity and foolishness. You take any person who is egoistical and who’s blowing his own trumpet. You will immediately know because he’ll be stupid. Without understanding what he’s doing he’ll be doing such stupid things that you will start wondering, especially children, “What’s the matter with this fellow, he is quite funny?” And then the stupidity you see faces the person then he sees for himself, “Oh God! how did I become so stupid?” The stupidity comes to you because you forget the existence of God and your relationship with the whole. You think, “I am on my own. Why should I not do this? What is wrong in this, what is wrong in that? I should do these things.” I mean in this country the way people are fighting for things. I mean you must, anybody I mean, those so-called developing countries can’t understand what kind of a thing happening to these people. Because the other day my son-in-law Lav was reading an article that people are demanding now that the son-in-law should be allowed to marry the mother-in-law. And he just couldn’t understand how can people gather together and ask for such an absurd thing like that. She is your mother. How can you say that way? I mean it is something an impossibility for people, normal people to think like that. That a son-in-law can marry the mother-in-law. And what is there to make a law about it and to talk about it. It’s a very difficult thing.
All kinds of stupid things we are doing in this country, which really makes everybody roar with laughter. Is because of our Mr. Ego companionship. It is not easy to understand how he befools us. It goes on befooling us all the time and then we think what’s wrong? An eighty-year-old man running after a twenty-year-old girl. And the twenty-year-old girl befooling this eighty-year-old man, supposed to be a statesman this, that and his statue is erected somewhere there. How is it possible?
It is only the ego makes you do all these nonsensical and stupid things. Once you are in Sahaja Yoga you don’t know how to control your laughter sometimes the way people are foolish. Extremely foolish. And this is what it is; it ends up in stupidity absolute stupidity. I mean even if you want to write a novel you won’t get such beautiful characters as you could around you, when you listen to them. And you’re shocked, Oh God what’s this going on and very embarrassing too. Extremely embarrassing and they become so foolish with their ego that one cannot understand how thinking man, because by thinking you get your ego, becomes foolish.
There is no wisdom in a person whose ego is completely developed like that. If somebody has an ego like that there is no wisdom in him. You can see that he does not know what is wisdom. He behaves in such an immature way. He may be an elderly man, great grandfather of somebody but as soon as he opens his mouth you are shocked at him. You think from where this joker has come? The maturity is completely lacking. The other day somebody told me that, “Mother how is it our parents are so stupid and we are searching God? And the elderly people are so foolish and we are searching God?” And then I said, “No, maybe because of war the parents are disturbed, you see”. Most of the parents were disturbed during war and they said, “Majority of them are like this. And the younger people are searching God and much wiser and we don’t know how to compromise with them because they are not searching God. Why is it they are not searching God and we are searching God? And if there are some searching, they are very few.” Now I said this may be due to war but somebody said, “Then what about America? You see, in America the people didn’t face war so much, the stupidity that they have is sometimes surprising.”
That is the same thing as I said, is the development of ego in a human being. Now ego is the thing that makes you think about everything. For example, now we have to, say go from here to Birmingham, all right. So we think now how will I go? Simple way is that I’ll take a train or I’ll take a car and go away. If there’s no reservation needed I will just jump into the train or going by the car. If the car is available I’ll go by car or by train finished. What is there to think about? But no, then we must plan it out, “I’m programmed now I have to go”. You go to the station and find the train is not there because there was some accident so the train is not moving. So you are absolutely upset because you think that the train has gone now what to do. In that upsetting you do not even remember that you have a car and you have to go by the car. Now that whole things upsets you because you had plans to go by train and you had planned everything, now you cannot reach there and what will happen? Now you are sitting here and worrying about it.
As a person who is spontaneous what will you do? All right depends on, I may go by train or by car whatever I feel like at that time. He is sitting tight. So he goes to the train, sees if the train is there. If it is, nicely there’s a space available he gets into it. If the train is not available, all right, he comes home takes his car and goes away. So now you have informed the people that you must meet at such and such a place. That’s also is there you see. So those people are running up down there and they will be there at the station. Now what’s the matter? Even if they’re at the station you can meet them at the station. You go by train and you can meet them. What is there to be that much upset about it? You see you can always contact them. But the way we get upset we have spoiled the complete program of going to Birmingham, which is a very beautiful program that we have got. We have to meet new people, we have to meet many people, we have to enjoy ourselves. That’s all finished because we had planned something and it did not work out, we are finished.
All these things make us a miserable person. And we are so miserable and so grudging and so boring that those who are next to you just get fed up with it and they say, “Now shut up. If you are not going to Birmingham, if you are not going don’t go. But don’t eat my head now”, is a common experience of many. If this Mr. Ego he’s so, he doesn’t want you to be happy. He doesn’t want you to be relaxed. He all the time gives you ideas and tells you, “Do this and do that and you must get it done and this is to be done. You had better inform that person, be meticulous about it,” and it will go to such details that anything fails you are finished because your nerves are already finished and shattered. Anything, even a drop of inconvenience comes into you or even a feather of disturbance is there, you are finished. And so everybody is rattling, “We have tensions. We have problems.” Why? What is the advantage of doing all these things? No advantage you know that. But then why do you do it? Because you have a big ego. It won’t allow you to rest. Whatever you may try it won’t.”
HH Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi