Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Exposing the Ego ~ The Tactics of Attack & Defense

All set to peel back the veneer of the ego's tactics...? Go get that cup of whatever, get comfy, open your mind, and let the Spirit highlight whatsoever He will, if anything, out of what I'll share here ... it's perfectly ok with me if this is *just* for me -- for I certainly need a daily dose of this expose...!

Keeping in mind that the ego's main goal is to keep me thinking/feeling/acting guilty, follow me in this line of thinking: once I believe that I'm guilty, and I thus project my guilt onto you, and attack you for my own guilt, I then believe that I am deserving, and even in need of, punishment. I believe that my attack on you justifies your resulting attack on me. Even if you don't choose to attack me, I will believe that your attack is imminent, and I will move into "defense mode" ... I will be committed to proving that I'm not guilty, and so I will judge your counter-attack as unjustified.

(Do you see the insanity? I am pre-judging you for doing to me as I did to you, even as it started with me judging and attacking you by projecting my OWN STUFF onto you...! AND, the whole thing is designed to be my own liberation, for I cannot receive healing for anything I'm unaware of ... you are merely the mirror enabling me to SEE my own self-blinded stuff ... so in effect, I go and shoot the divine messenger...!)

(Egads!)

Back to my supposed need for defense ... the greater my "need" to defend myself, the more I am actually reinforcing my (erroneous) belief that I am guilty. The motivation behind every defense is my desire to protect myself against facing my own fear. If not for my fear, I would have no need to have a defense ... but my desire to self-defend tells me that I should be afraid (vicious cycle).

So, as I am defending myself (from the counter-attack that I initiated!), I am cementing the notion that I *should* be afraid, and my fear is rooted in my belief that I am guilty. I imagine that my defense is protecting me from fear, but it's actually increasing my fear! My self-defense allows the ego to increase ... and I become more and more convinced that I *am* my ego ... that I am sinful, fearful and guilty.

The ego then is quite invested in perpetuating this cycle ... "you must defend yourself, you must control how others see you, you must correct them, you must hide your dark side, so that no one knows how truly wretched you really are!"

But here's the truth: "In my defenselessness my safety lies." Sounds counter-intuitive, no? But if I want to know that I am truly safe, and that my true protection is God ... the best way for me to *know* that is to not get in the way with my false self-defensiveness. Jesus showed us this example ... He knew that no matter what anyone "did" to Him, they could not harm Him ... for He knew He was not His body, and He knew He was not His reputation. He was utterly secure in His true identity (which is OUR identity). He knew that the thoughts and efforts of others "against" Him could not touch who He truly was. And so it can be, and is, for us: once we really KNOW Who we are, and know Who our Father is, there is no more need to protect ourselves ... for we will *know* that we need no defense. Therein lies peace...

It's only within the ego's fluff-and-nonsense system (which only *appears* to be real) that we need to defend ourselves. The guiltier we feel, the more we will attack. The more we attack, the guiltier we will feel. The more we attack the more we feel the need to defend ourselves from the expected counter-attack (or the punishment we secretly believe we deserve).

Yadda-yadda-yadda...!

And it all comes down to believing that we are separate from God, and thus enemies of God, and thus that sin (which is an announcement/demonstration of separation) is even possible... and the resulting fear that when God "catches" us, we will be punished.

Upon this (mistaken/erroneous) premise, Christianity was founded. Christianity is nothing more than the insanity of the ego, Institutionalized and Ritualized. Which is why sermons declaring how all are sinful, wretched and separated from God, are continually preached - for separation/sin must be promoted or Christianity collapses - AND the ego and the Collective Ego will do everything possible to drown out the still, small Voice of the Spirit within (including sermonizing about how we cannot trust our own wicked hearts ... and how we need Them, the Professional Egoists, to interpret the Word of God - the Voice Within, for us). For, if we allowed ourselves to be led, by the Spirit, into all Truth, we would have no need for any egoic/human voice to influence us... and yet we would be utterly open to hearing the Spirit speaking through anyone and anything...! (Ironically enough, this is what the prophet said would happen -- in the new covenant, which, you may have noticed, we've been in a long, long while now..! Read the following passage from Isaiah 31 carefully, with fresh eyes ... don't let the ego's familiarity with it keep you from seeing what God was really saying!)

31 "The time is coming," declares the LORD,
"when I will make a new covenant
with the house of Israel
and with the house of Judah. [notice when this new covenant came about -- so why do we act like we're "still waiting"...?)

32 It will not be like the covenant
I made with their forefathers
when I took them by the hand
to lead them out of Egypt,
because they broke my covenant,
though I was a husband to them,"
declares the LORD.

33 "This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel
after that time," declares the LORD.
"I will put my law in their minds
and write it on their hearts.
I will be their God,
and they will be my people.


34 No longer will a man teach his neighbor,
or a man his brother, saying, 'Know the LORD,'
because they will all know me,
from the least of them to the greatest,"
declares the LORD.
"For I will forgive their wickedness
and will remember their sins no more."




It is so very, incredibly crucial that we see this, the egoic world (both within us and around us), for what it is, so that we are no longer seduced by its lies. The ego keeps us believing we are guilty, by making us *think* we are getting rid of our guilt by projecting it onto others, and then attacking them, and banishing them. It inflames our anger, for anger seems to justify the projection of guilt onto others (we THINK it's about THEM, when it's about US). We go to inordinate lengths to justify our anger against another, when really we are enraged (the anger covering up our deeper FEAR) at ourselves ... but we feel too fragile to be able to face it honestly. We think we NEED an enemy -- a scapegoat -- someone on whom to cast our pain/fear/guilt/shame/sin. We divide up the entire world into good and bad ... separating them from each other .. we need at least one person, or one idea, or one group, to make "the bad one" ... and THIS is the source of all prejudice and discrimination ... this perceived need (largely unconscious, therefore insidious) to find someone to take away our sins, so that we can escape the burden of our own (imagined) guilt...!

We even did this with Jesus ... the ultimate scape-goat. And then we turned the ego-need into a religion, and required that people believe in this "means of salvation" as the ONLY way to get to God.

(OMG ... I never saw that connection before, until I just typed it out ...! Wow. This is huge.)

Spirit of God ... show us how we've been duped ... let our perspective be replaced with Yours. Let us let go of what we think we know, about You, about Jesus, about the Atonement, the crucifixion, salvation ... ALL of it, no matter how "holy" and "critical" we think any of it is ... let us hold it up to You, and allow You to show us what's of man, and what's of You ... let us see as You see, and know as You know. Show us out religious "facts" have replaced Truth.

Let us trust YOU more than we trust what we think we know ...

Shalom, Dena

8 comments:

MysticBrit said...

Thanks again for your eloquence, Dena.

Here's where I am with the whole Jesus/guilt/sin thing, a position which you've helped me put into words. As ever, this is an evolving thing in my heart.

I'm coming to the idea that Jesus was, is a Living Parable (not that any idea can ever contain him, of course:)). As he allways had to explain his verbal parables because we never 'got them', so we managed to totally 'not get' him, but project all our 'stuff' onto him. We 'killed' him, believing that by so doing we could get rid of said stuff, which we'd 'laid on him', because we couldn't cope with having it 'on/in us' (the burden of our imagined guilt).

He knew that would happen, of course, because he knew us totally.

His life, death and resurrection was the sublime three act drama (parable) God used to get our attention, to show us that our whole way of thinking was utterly flawed, that we were only alienated from God in our own minds, and that the Truth is that we, God, All That Is, are One, and allways have been.

And herein is Love...

Come unto me all that labour... and you will find rest for your souls...

Dena said...

I really like how you put that, Harry ... it strikes me as having truth. Yes, it's incredibly and radically divergent from the traditions-of-man story ... but what is the outcome of that story? The result is a bunch of people claiming to follow Christ, who ignore His teachings, and look nothing like Him. Rather than embracing the "outcasts" they malign them, attack them, and cast them out of the "camp". The trick is to see how we each do that, within ourselves, and toward others ... ahhhh, the sublimity of forgiveness...!

MysticBrit said...

Honestly, Dena, I feel so 'outside the box' now that I've forgotten what the box even looks like! And that's probably the point - the 'box' never actually existed, but was only 'in our minds', a figment of our collective imagination.

Yes, we can actually put God 'outside the camp' - crucify Him indeed! - and live within our own tiny, sad, isolated world of imaginary need, while all the grand vista of Sufficient Life is spread for our delight.

Boy, there's so much richness and depth in all this, and it makes me quite dizzy!:)

StephenT said...

Your take on all of this ego madness contains much insight. The only fly in the ointment for me is the implication that Christ gets reduced in some significant ways. Maybe it's just me, but I see the implication that Jesus just becomes the "revealer of the real" ... a real that stands outside of Him, instead of a saving reality that He created. One who, by his own example and life as parable, simply acts a a helpful undeceiving force in the universe, rather than it's all in all.

According to what you've said so far, please help with this question: "Did Christ have to die, and was His death effectual in any way?" Did Him becoming sin just fulfill a parable, or did it really happen?

As the other commenter noted, if we were only alienated from God in our own minds, what does the Christ actually become for us?

Thanks for letting me spout.

Dena said...

Excellent questions, Stephen ...!

And it's the VERY thing I've been grappling with, for months, as my own private journal (that which remains in the bathroom) would attest...

Don't take my words as THE answer ... I'm just another sojourner. I know this, for myself, from this unfolding journey ... that MUCH that I'd previously been taught, by the traditions of man, has proven to be false at worst, and twisted at best. Agendas have proliferated.

A few thoughts:

- I no longer believe that Jesus felt separated from God, or abandoned by God, while being crucified ... I believe He cried out the first line (the "title") of Psalm 22, which begins "My God my God, why have you forsaken me?" Jews didn't number the psalms .. they knew them by the first lines. And, since most male Jews had memorized all the psalms, they would know what Jesus was quoting ... and they would recite it, and know that He was claiming that He was bringing salvation to the world (I see salvation as "wholeness"). Read the whole psalm, especially the ending, to see what Jesus was saying, with what little breath He had left.

- Personal salvation is a new concept in history ... scripture speaks of saving *all*. And it was brought about, historically, with the advent of the new covenant (read what the prophets wrote about the coming new covenant, also called the new heavens and new earth). As in Adam ALL died (in their minds) .. so too in Christ are ALL made alive -- same "all" on both sides of that equivalent statement.

- I no longer believe in Substitutionary Penal Atonement (which was invented in the Middle Ages) -- that *someone* had to die in order for sins to be forgiven ... i.e., "God had to kill God in order to appease God." I don't believe that God had to be appeased, that God was out for blood. I believe that that's our own projection we've put upon God.

- Studying the Christus Victor Atonement theory helped me out quite a bit -- I recommend it (& there are many Atonement theories -- that alone gives me pause).

- I notice that Jesus declared some people forgiven, PRIOR to the crucifixion. How could He do that IF it was necessary for Him to die, in order for anyone's sins to be forgiven...?

- It seems to me that the traditional view diminishes Jesus far more than most realize. It says that we were all alienated from the Omnipresent God (even though David says that if he made his bed in Sheol, the place of the dead, God was *there* -- how can we be separated from Omnipresence anyway?). *Someone* had to shed blood as a sacrifice (even though God had said, "I do not desire sacrifice, but mercy"). So, Jesus did it. However, WE, in our delusions, are far more powerful than the Savior of the World, in that our unbelief is said to be able to out-do His Atonement ... unless we "believe right" (which is a work, just as "doing right"), we go to "hell". So, according to the traditional view, Jesus is the Savior of the tiny minority, while "satan" is the winner of the vast majority. Making the Atonement an ineffectual sacrifice. Making us far more powerful than He who "desires/wills that none should perish." I just don't buy it anymore. It doesn't pass the BS test for me anymore.

I'm currently seeing that Jesus' death was to show us the absurdity of the sacrificial sysrem, which I believe humans came up with (seeing God as one of the angry "volcano gods" who "demanded" virgins and firstborns to appease them -- and later, after the return from Babylon, the priests wrote out the minutae of the tedious sacrificial system -- they added to the scripture).

(to be continued)

Dena said...

(continued)

- I see that Jesus showed us that love was more powerful than our fear-based system of "enforced righteousness".

- I see that He was saying, "you insist upon a sacrifice? Ok, I'll show you sacrifice -- you think God demands sacrifice, but I'll show you that God becomes the sacrfice, so that you will finally GET it that God loves you, that God doesn't want to be your Master, but your Husband ... and my very last prayer, prior to the crucifixion, is that you would know that you are all one ... with each other, and with God. I'll show you that God doesn't use wrath, as you've long imagined & feared, but woos you with love ... for you have only been God's enemies in your own minds, and never in the mind of God."

That's what I'm seeing ... still working out all the implications. The Spirit will lead us, each of us, into all truth, as we can bear it.

Dena said...

One more thought ... I see that Christianity is a creation of man ... and that we utterly missed the point of Jesus' life, teachings, and death/resurrection-message (the early followers focused on the resurrection, and not the crucifixion -- no images of the crucifixion were in any art 'til after 1,000 years, in the Dark Ages).

I see that Christianity is a perpetuation of the Pharisees. Merely swapping out the need for conditional good works, for conditional good beliefs.

But God loves, saves, and redeems unconditionally. NOTHING created (including ourselves) can separate us from the love of God. Nothing.

MysticBrit said...

Yes, my friend. I make no apology for repeating this, which for me is what it all boils down to -

If we could only read the whole Bible in the light of the truth that God is Love, and that we've just taken a very long time to wake up to the full implications of that fact, All is revealed. All.

All Creation is waiting in great, joyous expectancy for the revealing of the Children of God (Us!). Let's not keep it waiting any longer - it's so inconsiderate and unnecessary!:D