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Let Love teach you what You are.

edited for clarification by Eric: The original post is mistaken. Gary Renard does not say to make friends with our ego. This was a misunderstanding of Gary Renard talking about other spiritual paths that do say we should make friends with our ego.


Hi Everyone,

I was watching some ACIM You Tube videos and I came across one of Gary Renard being interviewed and talking about the ego. He told the interviewer that we need to make friends with our ego. The interviewer seemed a bit confused about this and Gary went on to try and explain it.

I know that Gary is somewhat famous in the ACIM world from his book(s). But as I was listening to what he was saying, it didn’t seem to make sense for me about making friends with the ego. Maybe I don’t understand what ACIM says about the ego, but doesn’t it seem that if we try and make friends with the ego, then we are essentially making the ego (an illusion) real?

Besides seemingly trying to make the ego real with this, it doesn’t really seem to me like we’re trying to cultivate a true friendship anyway, but almost like we are trying to compromise with the ego. This seems to fall under “Forgiveness to destroy” in the Song of Prayer.

I happen to have a great example of what I’m trying to convey here. Don’t laugh at me too hard, LOL. I was just a kid.

When I was about 7 years old, my granddad gave me a ventriloquist dummy. Soon after the movie “Magic” with Anthony Hopkins came out about a ventriloquist dummy coming to life and killing people. I didn’t see the movie until a few years later, but the commercials themselves scared me since I had a dummy myself.

I never did like this dummy. As a matter of fact, it terrified me when I lived with my grandparents in Arkansas for a year. When I moved back to California, my granddad sent it to me. Why my granddad decided to send this dummy to me, I have no idea, but I didn’t want it at all. My mom said that it was a gift and I needed to keep it. So I wanted to keep it in the closet, but she said no. She kept chest full of her yarn in my room and so she said that I should put it on that chest. The chest though, was at 45 degree angle across from my bed.

Being a 7 year old kid and after seeing those commercials, this dummy terrified me. I hated it. If only I didn’t have this dummy would my life at the time been much more peaceful! In my childish mind, I thought that this dummy was going to come to life and kill me.

So every night, as I was going to bed. I would talk to it first.
I would say things like, “OK, I’m going to bed now. I hope that you have a good night. I hope that you sleep well and have good dreams and that you wake up tomorrow to have a great day.” I did this ritually.

Looking back on this, I seemed to have been doing two things. One I was trying to make friends with the dummy, in hopes that by doing so it wouldn’t kill me. I was essentially trying to find a compromise with this thing, in hopes that my life would be spared, but I was also doing something else. I was making something that was not real, real. How counter productive is that?

Instead of realizing that the dummy being alive wasn’t real. That the movie wasn’t real. That it was just a form of illusion. I was making the dummy real and then trying to compromise with it, by trying to become friends with it.

As the course says, it would be far better for me to put away such childish things and realize the truth, instead of trying to compromise with illusion.

What do you think? Should we try and make friends with our ego as Gary says or should we just overlook it completely and realize that it was just but an illusion of our True Selves? I’d love to hear someone else’s thoughts on this and what they think.

Take care,

Eric

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Eric, I love it...LOL literally laughing out loud as I read your recounting of your childhood "dummy". I agree with you that to make friends with the ego doesn't feel like the answer. But rather see it as the veil (a secret wish for separate identity gone insane; a shadow parody of our true nature fragmented). Our minds cannot function on two tracks. The Course clearly tells us we must choose, not by resistance or denial but by transcendance with our Mighty Companions ... seeing beyond the veil of illusory fear disguised as ego deceiving us into believing it speaks for us to our Oneness in Love. I love you Eric. I so enjoy your writing. Namaste, Ruby
LOL Ruby,

That dummy did scare me too. Ever have a re accuring dream? I did and it was of that dummy. LOL Except it was a nightmare. I had that nightmare for like three years. Same one, never changed.

And thank you for your insight on this. Yes, you're right, we must choose and not try and bring truth to the illusions and try to make them real, but bring illusions to truth to be seen for what they are and to be undone. or do I have that saying backwards? LOL Oh well you know what I mean... I hope LOL

It's funny how I am "giving up" quite a few things that I used to feel were important. They just don't seem so important anymore. There is no feeling a sacrifice from this, but a feeling of being released from it. Like I was trying to explain in my post "Grateful for a Glimpse." It wasn't the fact that I had lost my ability to get angry, but that I was released from anger. The release from anger...ahhhhhhh, that sounds so wonderful right now lol. I'm not angry, LOL, just regular ole life. It seems to have this underlying anger or tension underneath that I never noticed before.

Love back at ya Ruby
To me, the putting away of childish things belongs to a moment when I can realize that they no longer have any meaning. Sometimes to me it seems that the ego is nothing but emotional attachments, and that these are mostly made of grievances, righteous-justice oriented, and at best meets with an attempt at forgiveness.

Being honest with my thoughts and feelings does not always sit very 'nice' with many, and when that happenes I want to hide away somwhere knowing I have failed something, and fear of people can resurface very quickly.

What is the ego? Are all people like dummies to me that can jump from their box to cause me to be afraid of them? No, I rather think that rising above the situation makes all the difference, the place in my mind where grace lives, and love and comfort is found. Then I find friends nd love and goodness.

Then I think that the ego is made of fear and guilt, but there is always more to everyone than that. The fear in me is undone by letting go of emotional attchments that exist in my mind alone. By bringing my thoughts into the lessons of the workbook, by expressing myself creatively in any way that is available I grow away from childish things, and occasionally with such passion that others may not know where I am coming from.

Then I remember that all life is in God, and all love is part of God's love; on the wider and deeper scale of things I am not a body at all and the mortal aspects of my mind would just cease to have reality because there is no longer any investment in that.

For me the Course in Miracles means healing, healing through miracles, healing through receiving and giving recognition of the equal value of any brother along with me and me along with them. Then we share the same interests. This is an inner level of intent, to act from and think from and live from what I want to be. Miracles happen.

To make friends with the ego then to me is something that sounds like making friends with one's shadow, as Jung the early psychologist promoted. One may not like one's shadow, the hidden denied and less appealing aspects of the self of living in the darkened world of opposites and language and shadows of the real.

I like to know my shadow, and learn honesty, and lean on God's grace. Childish things will then fall away as I allow myself to be turned inside out and upside down and back again and again.

My two bits...
Much love to all
thulananda
I wonder why God would ask anything to be excluded from Love. All ego emotions are transformed to love by the Holy Spirit. I believe we must seek healing of all forms of fear, including fear of the ego. How can we return to oneness in God if we do not embrace everything within the illusion with Love. Love excludes nothing...it is all inclusive. We can continue to fear the ego...thereby giving it more meaning in our experience or we can extend it love like anything else we seek to heal in our experience. How does making it separate and special and not worthy of love serve any purpose?

blessings and love, lana
I suppose in this world of perception, that there can be a few ways to see this. Just from my personal experience of when I was younger, I find making friends with the ego a form of bargaining. For while it is true that we must extend love to every illusion in this world. The ego is not simply an illusion in this world, but the maker of this world of illusions.


I certaintly don't mean to now hate the ego by any means but more like laying it aside, like a child that finally realizes that the toy they feared, the one that made the world of terror so real, the one that caused such immeasurable suffering is really nothing at all. In this realization, there is no need to make friends with the toy of terror, for now there is no bargain that need happen.

The child simply smiles in the realization that the toy is not real and all the terror came from the child's mind and not the toy. Now does the child neither hate nor love the toy he feared so much before. Now the toy is simply neutral, like the body. In itself it has no meaning. Now can the child gladly laugh and leave the toy and move on. But in making the toy a friend, now the toy is still in the mind. For while NOW it is not fearful, it still has the ability to be in the future.

Making friends with the ego in the conventional sense seems to keep us attached to the ego. For to be friends with someone or something we must keep them in our mind. And with the ego, this false self concept that has tried to kill us, this almost sounds like the old saying, "Keep your friends close, but your enemies closer." Or as I was saying, it reminds me of trying to bargain with my dummy when I was a kid.


It kind of reminds me of getting good self esteem. While there is nothing wrong with that. It is still limited to the world of illusions, because it is still a concept. Getting good self esteem must mean that the self esteem before was not satisfactory and in this comparison does the person try and achieve a better self concept of themselves. But a concept can still hurt or be hurt. It is still bound by the laws of illusion, because it is still an illusion.

But these are just my thoughts for today. They might change tomorrow who knows.
I just wanted to leave this with a part in the course that reminds me of when I was that scared kid bargaining with my dummy.

There CAN be no salvation in the dream, as YOU are dreaming it. For idols MUST be part of it, to save you from what you believe you have accomplished, and have done to make you sinful, and put out the Light within you. Little children, It is there. You do but dream, and idols are the toys you dream you play with. Who has need of toys but children? They pretend they rule the world, and give their toys the power to move about, and talk and think and feel, and speak for them. Yet everything their toys appear to do is in the minds of those who play with them. But they are eager to forget that they made up the dream in which their toys are real, and recognize their wishes are their own.

Nightmares are childish dreams. Their toys have turned against the child who thought he made them real. Yet CAN a dream attack? Or CAN a toy grow large and dangerous and fierce and wild? This does the child believe BECAUSE he fears his thoughts, and gives them to his toys instead. And their reality becomes his own, because they seem to SAVE him from his thoughts. Yet do they KEEP his thoughts alive and real, but seen OUTSIDE himself, where they can turn against him for his treachery to them. He thinks he NEEDS them that he may escape his thoughts, because he thinks the THOUGHTS are real. And so he makes of ANYTHING a toy, to make his world remain outside himself, and play that HE is but a part of it.

There is a time when childhood should be passed and gone forever. Seek not to retain the toys of children. Put them all away, for you have need of them no more.

With Love,

Eric
Yes Eric i agree. But my point was just that if God = Everything, than everything other than God is an illusion, including the Ego and the self-image we have tied up in it. We just give ego more meaning, myself included, and for that reason it has become a "special" illusion that is treated separate and differently than other illusions. We are more resistant to releasing it because our whole identity is linked to it. Like anything else, the meaning we assign to something determines how we experience it in our lives. Truth is, all illusions can be transformed to love by HS. We will all experience Truth...God minus illusions, and we will wake up in heaven. How glorious that will be : )
love, lana
I have to make a correction and an apology. I just checked the original Gary video and I misunderstood what he said. He did not say to make friends with the ego. He said that some spiritual teachings suggest doing that.
I have not read the replies here (yet :) )
My choice appears to be between the Bluebird of Happiness and the Chicken of Depression :)

I just read in *Immortal Teachings of Ramana Maharshi* -

The ego is like one's shadow thrown on the ground. If one attempts to bury it, it would be foolish. The Self is only One. If limited, it is the ego. If unlimited, it is infinite and is the reality.

So do I befriend the ego - I become aware of the ego - become aware of my thoughts and choose which ones to entertain.
Dear Eric,
Let me ask you a simple question: Have you ever known anyone without an ego? For me the answer is a definite I haven't. It follows for me that such a development in a human being is something that must have been contemplated in the original design. As a corollary to this there must be a right function that an ego must perform while we operate in this dimension otherwise our Creator made a horrible blunder which has caused untold misery to humanity. Why not believe that our ego as with other of man's mind structures has been by default developed incorrectly for a function not of his competency? Ego is a structure in our mind. Shall we dispense with mind in order to get rid of all nasty structures in it? Or perhaps It is our mind that must cleansed of all self defense debris and perhaps ego may return to function not as a defense mechanism but according to the original design whatever that may be. I fancy it to be your purveyor and dispenser of our Father's Love so that I may feel and sense it in you. ( you as an ego for I have no other way presently of knowing you but through your personality). Ego is a hindrance in the higher realm but a necessity in this one so that we can be in the world but not necessarily of it. I believe a man without ego can not be in the world.
Carlos

Carlos
When I am lost in thinking and continual feeding my thoughts, my ego rules the roost. From this excessive thinking I swirl into concepts and beliefs and images, judging here, judging there. If you disagree with any of my opinions I launch into defence and attack mode etc. etc... never ending conflicted mind........ my personality is to the fore.

If I don't continually feed the turbulence and when I release my grip on these self created concepts and illusionary imaginings that just generate more of the same garbage and surrender into this Now moment I realise the ego is a 'bunch of thoughts', incredibly powerful thoughts !! yet only thoughts.
I don't have to fix them or feed them. They can just be there.
Insightful, Eric! That was a wonderful story that illustrated a valuable truth. The ego is not real, just a finite puppet, and so what is there to make friends with? Neither is it something to be feared, but something to gently, confidently turn away from in the assurance that all is as it should be, knowing that the ego itself (called "carnal mind" by some) is of no consequence except to the degree that we allow ourselves to focus on it. That to which we give our attention becomes our Truth. As the scripture says, "Seek ye first the Kingdom . . ." -- and when this is done consistently, through consistently, daily turning away in meditiation from the world ego made, and when we continue listening to the still, small voice for God, ego dissipates like the mists at sunrise. The ego is of so little consequence that I'd like to say it is not even an illusion of our True Selves. Why would True Self imagine an ego? It is an illusory, mistaken concept that does not, in truth exist. So then, is not the ego and illusion of itself? For True Self is of and in God, and why would God imagine a vain thing?
Think not the ego will enable you to find escape from what it wants. .... What is intent on your destruction is not your friend.

The ego always speaks first, because it is capricious and does NOT mean its maker well. This is because it believes, and correctly, that its maker may withdraw his support from it at any moment.

But YOU made the ego without love, and so it does not love YOU.

THE EGO IS AFRAID OF YOU

And the ego feels badly in need of allies, though not of brothers.

Perceiving something alien to itself in your MIND, the ego turns to the body, NOT the mind as its ally BECAUSE the body is not part of you. This makes the body the ego's friend. But it is an alliance frankly based on separation. If you side with this alliance, you WILL be afraid, because you are siding with an alliance OF fear. The ego and the body conspire AGAINST your minds, and because they realize that their "enemy" CAN end them both merely by knowing they are not part of him, they join in the attack together. This is perhaps the strangest perception of all, if you consider what it really involves. The ego, which is not real, attempts to persuade the mind, which IS real, that it IS its own learning device, and that the learning device is more real than IT is. No-one in his right mind could POSSIBLY believe this, and no-one in his right mind DOES believe it.

Hear, then, the one answer of the Holy Spirit to ALL the questions which the ego raises.

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