Is an ant an ego? (video)
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||In this humorous and profoundly insightful Avataric Discourse (given by Adi Da on October 20, 2004 at Adi Da Samrajashram), Adi Da considers the difference between self-consciousness and egoity, referring to both humans and non-humans (including dogs, ants, and trees).
ADI DA: [Laughs] You generally attribute egoity to human beings, but you wonder about everything else. For instance, what about not something relatively inert like a rug or even just standing there and not seeming to be particularly responsive, like a tree. But what about a dog? Is a dog, do you think dogs are egos when you see them, just as readily as you think of human beings as egos? But, why do you draw the line? I mean how far does it go? Where do you stop thinking of living entities, at least, as egos? Do you just presume everything bigger than a cricket is an ego? Or is everything that moves in your, from your perspective experientially or in your natural presumptions, how far do, does the fact of egoity extend in your presumption.
Well, is an ant an ego in your presumption?
The word “ego” is actually a Greek word which means “I”. I consider it with you and talk about it in terms of self-contraction and so forth, but, so that’s the elaboration on its meaning, but the word simply means “I” which means the reference, self-reference, the reflexive, reflexive pronoun as it’s called of self-reference. So, does an ant feel self-referential?
You observe them protecting themselves and struggling with others. Couldn’t do so without some kind of self-consciousness, could it? So, you naturally presume that even something like an ant is, is a self, an ego, self-aware. Does something have to move from its spatial location? Does it have to be able to take a walk or, such as an ant or a human being, or can a tree? Does a tree have self-consciousness, exhibit self-consciousness. . .
What about trees? They are entities with apparent self-consciousness of a kind. They are in that sense, egos. But are they egoic? Are they functioning egoically? Are they feeling that they are in bondage and moved to seek as human beings are and as you feel in your own case, you see? Trees don’t seem to behave, generally speaking, in quite that way. They are self-conscious as organisms, but they don’t seem to be particularly disturbed about being trees. They seem more characterized by some kind of contemplation in which they don’t feel disturbed.
But if you observe non-humans, virtually all of them show signs of setting themselves apart and entering into a contemplative state that resembles some kind of a samadhi or meditative condition.
Why do you think human beings are disturbed? You see, why is human egoity what it is? If you observe how it appears in evidence in non-humans, suggests that human beings are the way they are because they’re confined, and not just confined by walls and bars. Some people are, and they get very disturbed there, and walk back and forth or get catatonic.
Your bondage is your own activity, and it also extends from conditions. Conditions can reinforce or seem to justify self-contraction. But still what you’re suffering is self-contraction itself.
So, human beings are actually confined, and they are self-confined, and otherwise, also, living in various modes and degrees of confinement by conditions of life and in fact, human beings feel confined by bodily existence, because however healthy you may be at the moment, you know you’re going to die, and are potentially, potentially, you could suffer any number of great happenings. And you anticipate that inevitably, you will, sooner or later, experience some fundamental difficulties that you would prefer not to have to endure, including disease and death.
Well, everything that’s physically living is going to die. The trouble, the difference is does it drive you crazy, make you seek, or are you at ease, because you haven’t lost touch with what transcends that possibility?
Avataric Discourses. From mid-2004 to early 2006, Avatar Adi Da offered a unique series of Discourses, broadcast live over the Internet to His devotees worldwide. During these occasions, Avatar Adi Da answered questions from those present in the room with Him, but also from devotees all over the world via speakerphone. As He had always done, even from the beginning of His Teaching Work, Avatar Adi Da addressed each devotee personally, but was also Instructing all beings, in all times and places. Many of these Discourses are available as DVDs and CDs from The Dawn Horse Press.
Poster: AdiDaVideos Post Date: August 10, 2018
Length: 18:44 Views: 507 Views This Month: 32 Views This Week: 11
Event Date: October 20, 2004