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Ego Traps

Ego is something that I have been dealing with at various levels. Something that keeps popping up in my life, mostly in negative connotations, and sometimes in positive connotations. If you have spent time with me, you would have often heard me talk about Ego of Spirituality.

Today scrolling through Facebook, came across this text, which was about the Ego of spirituality. Resonated with whatever I read, describing various scenarios that are referred to as “Ego Traps.” These include instances where a person might think they are acting more “spiritual” by engaging in certain behaviors such as riding a bike to work, avoiding television, or listening to classical music, but then judge others who do not do the same. It points out the hypocrisy of feeling superior in these situations and warns that this sense of superiority is an indication of falling into an ego trap. The text emphasizes that the ego can sneak in and distort noble ideas, leading to self-righteousness and judgment of others who do not follow the same path, which is contrary to true spirituality.

Ego Traps

  • If you think it is more “spiritual” to ride a bike to work or use public transportation, but then find yourself judging anyone who drives a car, you’re in an ego trap.
  • If you think it is more “spiritual” to stop watching television because it rots your brain, but then find yourself judging those who still watch TV, you’re in an ego trap.
  • If you think it is more “spiritual” to avoid reading gossip, tabloid or news magazines, but then find yourself judging those who do read those things, you’re in an ego trap.
  • If you think it is more “spiritual” to listen to classical music or soothing nature sounds, but then find yourself judging those who listen to mainstream or pop music, you’re in an ego trap.
  • If you think it is more “spiritual” to do yoga, become a vegan, buy organic, buy healing crystals, practice reiki, meditate, wear hippie/thrift shop clothing, visit ashrams and read enlightened spiritual books, but then you judge anyone who doesn’t do those things, you’re in an ego trap.

Always be aware of the feeling of superiority. Self-righteous superiority is your biggest clue that you are in an ego trap. The ego loves to sneak in the back door. It will take a noble idea, like starting up yoga, and then twist it to serve its own ends by making you feel superior to others; you will start to look down on those who are not following your righteous “spiritual” path. Superiority, judgment and condemnation. That is the ego trap.

It Made me Think

Thinking further on the topic of ego, I got curious what other types of Ego and Traps are there, so I ended up throwing the question to ChatGPT, and these make for an interesting read. Do read and see which of these are you trapped in. This is what Cutting Edge Generative AI had to say.

The concept of the “ego” in psychology and spirituality often refers to the part of the self that mediates between the conscious and the unconscious and is responsible for reality testing and a sense of personal identity. However, in colloquial and spiritual contexts, “ego” can sometimes refer to the part of us that is driven by self-interest, pride, and the need for control. Here are various types of ego traps that individuals might encounter:

  1. The Superiority Ego Trap: Believing you are better or more enlightened than others because of certain achievements or lifestyles.
  2. The Victim Ego Trap: Identifying oneself as a victim of circumstances or the actions of others, thus abdicating personal responsibility and empowerment.
  3. The Martyr Ego Trap: Constantly sacrificing one’s own needs for others to gain recognition or a sense of being needed, often accompanied by feelings of resentment.
  4. The Intellectual Ego Trap: Valuing oneself based on intellect or education and looking down on those with different levels of understanding or awareness.
  5. The Perfectionist Ego Trap: Striving for perfection and judging oneself and others harshly for any mistakes or imperfections.
  6. The Control Ego Trap: Needing to control situations or people and feeling anxious or angry when control is lost.
  7. The Pleaser Ego Trap: Seeking to always please others at the expense of one’s own needs, often to gain approval or avoid conflict.
  8. The Entitlement Ego Trap: Feeling entitled to certain treatments, successes, or possessions without effort or gratitude.
  9. The Comparison Ego Trap: Constantly comparing oneself to others in terms of appearance, wealth, status, or talents, leading to feelings of inadequacy or superiority.
  10. The Avarice Ego Trap: An insatiable desire for more, whether it’s material possessions, power, or recognition, often at the expense of ethical considerations or personal relationships.
  11. The Identity Ego Trap: Over-identifying with a group, role, or status to the extent that it prevents personal growth or open-mindedness.
  12. The ‘Busy’ Ego Trap: Measuring self-worth by how busy one is, equating busyness with importance or success.
  13. The Helper Ego Trap: Needing to help or fix others to feel a sense of purpose, sometimes ignoring one’s own needs or the autonomy of others.

These ego traps are not exhaustive and can overlap. Recognizing them is often the first step in personal growth and moving toward a more balanced, compassionate, and self-aware existence.

Do let me know in the comments if you can find a few in yourself or the ones you want me to build further on and share more information on.

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