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What is Jivatma or the Ego Self?

The biggest problem of man is that he has forgotten who he is. He has no clue ‘who’ he is. His ego or the embodied Self, which in spiritual terms is called the Jiva, is subjected to multiple births and deaths in different wombs. Man in the form of Jiva is responsible for his own down fall, as he fails to recognize his true nature as Paramatma (Supreme Self). Liberation lies in realizing our true nature before shedding this physical body. But the accumulation of Karma from many lifetimes makes it hard to perceive the truth. Just like love blinds a passionate lover, our Karma blinds us and binds us to this physical plane.

The irony is that the man (Jiva) himself imposes troubles upon himself and then blames others, especially God, for all his mistakes. Does God have no other business than creating hurdles for us? How can the creator of all beings be cruel to create troubles in our life? Well, the truth is that we are responsible for our own actions and their consequences. God (Guru) or our Supreme Self is a mere witness of our actions and the resulting joy and pain. Man comes under the influence of Maya (illusion) and forgets that he himself is God. He fails to recognize his true nature.

Guru or God can rescue man (Jiva) only if he takes a firm resolution to let go of his ego and his false identity. Kabir Das, a great mystic and poet, once said that the disciple (a man seeking liberation) is like a dirty piece of cloth and the Guru (our true Self) is like the detergent, who cleans the cloth and gets rids of the impurities. But, first the cloth must know that it is dirty and needs washing. What if the cloth assumes that it is clean? Man’s ego makes him think that he is perfect and that everything is fine with him.

The first step on the spiritual path is to assess our own weaknesses and strengths. Self-reflection is vital to spiritual growth and it does not take even ten minutes each day to assess our daily actions and to know where we are going. Meditation for even half an hour each day works wonders in getting rid of the negativity caused by ourselves and that which is imposed on us by our environment. We neither need to prove ourselves to anyone nor do we need to share our strengths and weaknesses, for everyone has got their own strengths and weaknesses to deal with. The Karma of each individual is different. We are all born individually from different wombs; we have different thumbprint and lines of fate on our palms. But surely, there is a common destination that we’ve all got to reach – the Supreme Self. Liberation leads to realizing this beautiful oneness of the cosmos. Hence, the Yogamaya 9 urges that it is high time that we realize the cosmic oneness (realize that all beings/all creation is one; nobody is superior or inferior) and attain truth in this very life.

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