Ego and the Transcendental Self

There are two “I”s. One is the ego that says, “I, my, mine; my family, my brother, my sister, my home.” That is the little “I”. The other “I” is the Transcendental Self, the Universal Consciousness which houses everyone. The ego does not house anybody. It only claims and possesses: “This is my father. This is my sister.” But the Universal Consciousness or the Transcendental Self does not claim anything in that way. It houses everybody as its very own.

In an ordinary family, when one member tries to possess another, he feels that without the other person he is totally lost; or he feels that if that person does not take light from him, the other person will be totally lost. In the ordinary life, when the ego operates, we feel that we are indispensable. We feel that we know better than everybody else and we are responsible for everything. We feel that everybody needs us. This is the ordinary ego.

But the Transcendental Self houses the entire cosmos and offers liberation or freedom to each individual soul. The Transcendental “I” says like the Christ, “I and my Father are one.” Here the Father is not an ordinary human being, but the infinite Self, the infinite Reality. This “I” identifies consciously with Infinity. This “I” is the Inner Pilot within us.

The big “I”, from the highest spiritual point of view, is always extending itself. Even when we realise the Truth, we feel that there is no limit to our Truth. There is a goal. Yesterday, we felt that the goal was a far cry. But today we come and touch the goal and then we feel that the goal which we have touched is not the Ultimate Goal. It becomes the starting point for tomorrow’s goal.

When we are consciously expanding, we drink in ecstasy, nectar. We expand like a bird spreading its wings. But we are not possessing. When we try to possess something, we try to possess by hook or by crook. But this spontaneous expansion of our consciousness is like a mother spreading her arms around her children. There is no possessive feeling. It is a spontaneous feeling of one’s own extension. Right now I am raising my hand. Gradually, gradually I am extending it and stretching it. It is my own reality that I am extending. I am not possessing anybody or putting anybody under my control. I just feel that on the strength of my aspiration, I am extending my own inner reality. I am spreading my wings far, farther, farthest.

God is everything. He is omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent. But He Himself is transcending His own Beyond. He is in the process of transcending His own Infinity. Now it is beyond our mind to grasp Infinity, but when we identify ourselves with the Lord Supreme we see Infinity and realise that it is to be found in the ever-transcending Beyond. Today’s Beyond is always our goal. And tomorrow when we enter into the Beyond, we feel that this Beyond is ever transcending its own reality.

So what we call the Transcendent is always extending itself. When we expand, we transcend. This is happening in the inner world constantly. Consciousness is always expanding. When it is a matter of the physical body, once you attain your height you will not grow. I am 5’8”. I will never be tall. But if I meditate, my consciousness will easily expand. There is no limit to our progress in the inner world.

In the inner world we are dealing with aspiration. In the outer world we are dealing with desire. Desire has a limit; it cannot go very far. But in the spiritual world, when we deal with aspiration, we are dealing with Infinity and Eternity. And there is no end to Infinity; there is no end to Eternity.

From:Sri Chinmoy,Sri Chinmoy speaks, part 3, Agni Press, 1976
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