So if there’s no ego, then what is the self?
In Sanskrit, there is an idea of the self, called the atman. It undergoes experiences to realize the atman’s true self in order to reach moksha, which is liberation. Throughout the atman’s journey, it experiences so many events and phenomena, given labels such as birth, milestone, dilemma, tragedy, crisis, miracle, and so on. Seen simply as happenings, the atman retains the experience and the associated emotions and feelings become engrams in the bio-memory of the body. The stronger the emotion, the more prominent it shows in the individual’s thoughts, behaviors, and actions.
Unfortunately, humans are more inclined to relate and link together negative experiences. Humans have an innate desire to perceive patterns so they can make a meaning and relate with it. This process is so deep-rooted that it becomes the default process of cognizing experiences for many. As a result, the self-created ‘ego’ becomes more and more powerful. The ego becomes real.
There is more than one way to look at an individual, in relation with themselves, others, and mind. However, there is also an optimal way to look at an individual. Are you aware of the default settings you carry?
“Mind is trained from a very young age to think that life moves from one worry to the other or from one pain to another, never from one joy to another. If you feel there is something wrong with what you are seeing, then you should look back in at yourself because what you see outside is only a reflection of what is inside you.” – H.H. Sri Paramahamsa Nithyananda Swami