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Formation of Ego


In the chapter on Matter in Life Divine, Sri Aurobindo explains the formation of ego. Mind creates a division of the one being and existence into apparently separate beings and objects. The identification of the will to be in the form with the separative viewpoint of mind in an individual being represents the formation of mental ego.

The division of reality by mind results in a division of force as well as consciousness - but not a division of being. The forces associated with each specific form that gives it life takes the standpoint of that separate form and acts to maintain, defend and enlarge it at the expense of other forms of force in its environment. The identification of the being with the separative standpoint of vital energy and interest in an individual being represents the formation of vital ego.

The same process occurs in the body and even at the level of the atom in matter. The will to be, identifies itself with the limited, apparently separate material form of the body or atom and regards everything other than that form as not-I, non-ego.

story | by Dr. Radut