Can you guess what the Secret for success with the Yamas is?

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At last, yes this is the final reading from John McAfee’s book, “The Secret of the Yamas.”  Here is a quote from this chapter: ” If we observe ourselves in our relationships – through our actions, thoughts and feelings as they are happening-then we will catch a glimpse of the ego.  In that light of awareness the ego will vanish, and in its place a profound silence will blossom.  In that silence is all beauty.  It is infinite, unknowable and not separate from ourselves.  It is immortality.”

Thanks for being a part of listening to my readings and I hope they have provided some useful food for thought and the quieting of mental chatter.  I do hope you may continue to stop by here on a regular basis as a subscriber.  I also look forward to your comments about your experiences and ideas.  Namaskaram

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288 responses »

  1. Like last week, this sums up the conclusion of the ultimate goal of experiencing some sense of ego death. I have always been intrigued by the concept but as i stated previously. The only times i have ever heard of the topic was from psychonauts such as Terence Mckenna, Timothy Leary, and Alan Watts. Dedication to the Yamas may yield the result of ego death, and if it does then the promises might be better then expected.

  2. This audio clip is basically discussing the ego. It delves into how we as humans like to separate ourselves from things and divide our experience. We label things and their relationships, such as the choice and the chooser, act and actor, thought and thinker, perceiver and the object of perception, these things are what compose the ego. The thinker cannot be separated from the thought, as one does not exist without the other. As the process of thinking is the only reality. We momentarily lose ourselves when faced with profound beauty or danger. This is because the individual eye momentarily leaves us and we are left to perceive, act, and be. In those instances there are no thinker, actor, or chooser to hide behind. We are taken off guard and only allowed to experience as only the experience exists. I can understand this, as there has been many situations where i’ve only had time to react, without thinking of the right things to do and say, just perceiving the situation. At any other time thought is constant, planning, dissecting the past. Ego being a fragment of thought must exist in the past but it can project in the future and make plans for it self but it cannot exist in the present. If we observe ourselves and our relationships, we can gain a light of awareness where we achieve a profound silence that is not apart from ourselves. This light is a pathway to immortality, as it is infinite.
    My isha kriya practice is still consistent, more so now because of the change in the weather. I have been saying indoors more and now have slightly more time to relax and focus on myself. My matt work has gotten better over the course of the semester. I feel as if i’m more limber and used to the different positions. The new movements we are doing in class are kind of challenging as we have to switch through various positions ranging from planks to standing stretches and rocking. My lifestyle has remained otherwise unchanged. I look forward to thanksgiving break where i can enjoy my family and free time. Namaste

  3. The final reading covers the place the ego has in our thoughts, actions, feelings. Thinking has been divided into the thought and the thinker, actions into act and actor, perception into the perceiver and the object, the chooser and the choice, but despite these divisions, one cannot exists without the other. The ego is always the thinker, the actor, the perceiver, the chooser, but it does not exist in the present. McAfee states that when one is caught up in the moment of profound beauty or danger the individual I disappears. At that moment only the experience itself exists, the ego appears once the experience has passed. Being aware of one’s actions, thoughts, and feelings in the present one will catch a glimpse of the ego as it can only exist in the past and sometimes in the future.

    Even though I attempted to do the Isha Kriya more than the required amount of times, my schedule made it hard to be consistent. At the beginning of the semester I was doing the Isha Kriya before going to bed but in the past couple of weeks, I did it in the morning as soon as I woke up. This semester I have been trying to regulate my sleeping schedule and wake up early every day. One of my troubles in the morning is fully waking up, I tend to wake up but I end up falling asleep again. Doing the Isha Kriya in the morning forced me to get out of bed and it gave me the energy needed to fully wake up and start my day. The Isha Kriya has helped me improve some of the poses during class when we do baby cobra I have an easier time with the breathing.

    • A good essay, great you have brightened your day and increased your asana breathing as a result of your IK practice. My records show missing parts for Assignments #3,4,6,7,8. Every week 3 parts were due you can send them to my PC email to get credit by Sunday. Thanks

  4. In this final reading, the ego is analyzed through thought and fragmented perception. In us separating ourselves from the world as “I” we have separated the chooser and choice, thinker and thought and the act/actor. The process of thinking is the only reality, and the thinker is controlled and influenced by thought. Only when we experience the extremes of joy and pain, our ego dissappers and we only live in the experience itself.
    But we cannot separate the two and still remain whole, there is no ego without thought. Our thoughts rise from memory and the ego feeds from those thoughts. But if we are able to carefully observe ourselves in the midst of thought we can create a space where the ego no longer exists. Only our awareness of the present moment and living it will allow us to experience blissful peace.

    I would say the secret of success for the mama’s is to eliminate the ego. In us investing time in daily spiritual practice we allow ourselves to be in tune with the universe and remove unnecessary clutter that fuels the ego. The combination of class time and independent Isha Kriya practice has allowed me to have a holistic equilibrium practice that I look forward to daily and weekly. Learning and practicing different techniques, mantra’s and poses has not only strengthened my brain power in meditation but also been a support system to my mind, body and soul. There are still things I need to work on with balance and finding a center without allowing the other energies to sway my center of focus. I noticed during midterms and now during finals, a fatigued body is not the strongest body during yoga practice. Having mat practice every Monday night has added a new level of focus, concentration and peacefulness in me and I look forward to it each week.

  5. This is just summing up the conclusion of the ultimate goal. You must keep yourself away from distractions. When I say distractions I mean entertainment, media, and advertising. All of this keeps us away from finding our inner peace. As well as finding out who we truly are as human beings. We must keep working to keep those distractions out to finally be who we are supposed to be.

  6. In this reading the ego is discussed and if we let go of our ego we will reach a wonderful silence. I like the thought of a peaceful silence within. I know that is it human nature to let the ego drive all that we do. In addition, to doing everything possible to keep the ego well feed we tend to stay away from things that will burse the ego. It divides it between the thinker and the thought, reminds me of our practice in class. Separating ourselves “I am not this body, I am not even this mind.” this was a great way to close out the readings. If we know how to create distance between ourselves and our thoughts and actions to let go of our past. Gaining and better understanding of our present, leaving our ego and its thoughts in the past.

  7. I think in today’s age and era with social media we are constantly self-absorbed and measuring our ego based on likes and comments and yoga is the exact opposite of that. I remember in one of our first classes you spoke about how we are more than this body and more than our problems and we are celestial beings and are in tune with the universe and things are so much bigger and beyond this physical form. It was so inspiring and a great reality check and I feel like this just reiterated that and the importance of yoga bringing in that balance of the egotistical society we live in today. It’s a beautiful thing to be able to take ourselves away from those outside superficial distractions and focus on charging ourselves with the energy of the universe.

    • Also, I’ve been trying to memorize the practices we do in class to do these stretches and poses with my boyfriend to help him out and it’s been really nice to share and take these things outside of the classroom. The IK has now become apart of my life to help with stress or to help me calm down and sleep as well as the finger hold. I find the balance the IK and finger holds bring plus the intense practice has helped me both mentally and physically. This is the first winter where I haven’t gotten sick yet and I feel like I owe that to this practice!

  8. I found it interesting when it was stated that the ego can only exist in the past and also in the future but never in the present. It was interesting the mention of how the ego exposes the desires we possess whether they are ones we want to admit to ourselves or not. However, in this time and age most people have allowed their ego to control their lives for example through social media. We endlessly pamper ourselves in the wrong ways (expensive clothes, the newest technology, the latest trends, etc). However, we must acknowledge our ego, not let it control us. When you learn to acknowledge what you want you either learn to move towards it or away from it. Through our practice, we learn to become more collective and aware of ourselves which is highly important to avoid things such as being possessed by our ego.
    The IK practice has most definitely made me a less stressed and much calmer person than I was. Instead of jumping to panic I simply breath and allow my thoughts to separate.

    – Samantha Diaz

  9. When practicing yoga it is essential to separate the self from the mind and body. The ego if left to run wild will become preoccupied with the past or the future. When we are consumed with thoughts of the past or future we become distracted and cannot focus on the self. Yoga is all about getting in tune with your self, in the moment, and becoming distracted by the ego will prevent insight into the self. The ego is driven by the white noise that fills our minds, caught up in the past or present. The whos, whats, whens, wheres, and whys of our daily lives. Worrying about outcomes. Once we learn to separate ourselves from our egos we will have attained the secret of the yamas. When we reach a place within ourselves where we can be at peace, without worry, we will know the true purpose of yoga practice.

    I have been meditating with my IK every weeknight and have also found myself wanting to do it on the weekends. The difference in my sleep patterns is astounding and I don’t imagine I’ll go back to the way it was. I have a difficult time staying asleep the whole night and struggle in the mornings when I wake up feeling tired. Lately, however, I have noticed a change. I would definitely attribute the change to my meditation and learning certain poses in class that I can do on my own at home. I am noticing improved digestion which is a really great benefit.

    Catherine Halstead

    • Know that one cannot do meditation but acquire meditative qualities from practices. If you have a chance to read about the IK and review the video suggested at the beginning of the semester you would learn what a Kriya offers.

  10. I found this to be a very dense, yet interesting passage. Actually, I had to listen to it twice to start to understand the authors intent. Because the passage begins with a solipsistic statement about thought in regards to its progenitor, I assumed that the type of phenomenology the author subscribes to must agree that the mind is the instrument through which we observe the world. The phrase, “Thought creates the thinker, and attributes the qualities of choice, control, and will to it.” makes sense of ego as being only a heuristic through which we compartmentalize reality. This is however, inconsistent with the idea of literal ego death, which is revealed at the end of the passage to be the ultimate goal of the practice. Just because ego is something created by the human mind, that does not mean there are alternative modes of processing information. We think of things relative to the self because frame of reference is a vital part of interpreting information. My personal opinion is that our brains have evolved a sense of self for a reason, and the only way to transcend our myopic views is by devoting time to understanding the mechanics of our world which truly are universal.

  11. “The secret of the Yamas” the final reading talks about what the ego is and what it does to ourselves. We separate ourselves from the world with the I. Our thoughts make the thinker, the ego demands continuity. We forget ourselves in the happiest moments of our lives, we only experience that it exists. The ego doesn’t exist in the now, there is no ego with no thought, and thoughts arise from the past, from memories. When we practice the IK we forget about the acting, perceiving and being, and we allow glimpses of being one with all (mind, body, and soul).

    Practicing the Isha Kriya 4 times this week made me feel amazing, I did it at night on my bed supporting my back with big pillows which helped a lot with the back pain. While doing it I felt such peaceful feeling and after being done, I would be really relaxed and fall asleep. My sleep got way better and deeper.

  12. Within the final reading of “The Secret of the Yamas”, the idea of ego or as described in yoga as (ahamkara); which represents the individual’s sense of who they are – their thoughts, desires and personality, shaped by one’s own mind. Throughout the readings, the idea of how we express ourselve’s amongst people and the relationships we build, can all be summed up and/or alluded to the underlying meaning or central theme of an individual’s ego. “If we observe ourselves in our relationships – through our actions, thoughts and feelings as they are happening, then we will catch a glimpse of the ego” (The Secret of the Yamas). Along with this, if we are able to fully observe and focus on ourselves (really seek out who we are individually), then we could in-turn relax/keep our mind at ease. As we continue to think about the past and revolve ourselves on the negativity of the past, then all we are truly doing is lowering our self-esteem and/or more than anything (love for our own being).

  13. The quote left in the text of this post of The Secret of the Yamas, ” If we observe ourselves in our relationships – through our actions, thoughts, and feelings as they are happening-then we will catch a glimpse of the ego. In that light of awareness the ego will vanish, and in its place, a profound silence will blossom. In that silence is all beauty. It is infinite, unknowable and not separate from ourselves. It is immortality.” I thought this was very interesting because the idea of evaluating yourself through your relationships and the way that you act certain times and the certain thoughts you have along with feelings definitely exposes who you are and the type of ego you have. When you sit down and evaluate yourself as a reflection there are bias thoughts because as humans we always have a bias and a justification for the way that we act in certain situations. It is interesting to say that when the awareness of this ego is established the ego will then disappear as if it isn’t supposed to be there and that may happen with many because they are unaware of the type of ego they have in terms of it not being what they had expected in the sense that they reflected their ego to be different. What else was interesting was the idea that there is no ego without thought and we live so much in the moment that we don’t realize these things.

  14. So I guess THIS is the final reading…? Not sure haha.

    I think the ego stems from a place of fear. My idea of the ego and John McAfee’s differ greatly. In the sense that I believe the ego is there for a reason and can do some good in terms of creating/maintaining one’s sense of self so long as it does not outweigh its protective purposes and begin to do more harm than good. McAfee’s definition of “the ego” seems to focus a lot more on this imbalance versus my goal of sustaining this balance in the first place.

    In regards to this idea, I feel this differentiation only strengthens the “mission statement” of hatha yoga, if you will — that everything is about balance. I find it difficult to achieve a greater sense of self when I am focused on letting go of negative thoughts, energy, or “ego.” I’ve found it much more beneficial to release any kind of expectation in terms of creating balance. Lately I’ve generally just been realizing that it is always in the moments when I finally let go of striving for peace with someone or obtaining a goal that it comes to me.

    This is not to say that being passive is the key to successful interactions or results. I actually find the opposite to be true; conscious determination and manifestation has been something I’ve chosen to be the highlight of my 2018 and it’s gotten me exactly where I need to be, thus far.

    • Bravo for taking the time to ponder about these important concepts and finding your own truth. This is really all that a teacher can hope for that a student puts in the time to honestly explore, excellent!

  15. The fear that Sadhguru is talking about is what many people would refer to as anxiety. The fear, he claims, is rooted in the mind, and he defines two specific aspects of the mind—memory and imagination—which are primarily responsible for the fear. I myself am a relatively anxious person, and i certainly know these intangible fears. Coincidentally, I have a strong memory and an overactive imagination. I often blame my imagination for being the source of my fears, which are easily recognizable as being fabrications, often based on the memory of previous (usually negative) experiences.

    It makes sense that humans would have these advanced faculties from an evolutionary point of view. They appear to be extremely beneficial for survival. If one is afraid of everything on principle, one has less of a chance to be hurt or killed. Fear of the dark, for example, is perfectly logical, if one considers that ten thousand years ago there was a good chance that a lion could could be lurking in the darkness. This is essentially what the anxious fear of the non-existential is: a fear of dangers that exists in the realm of the unknown.

    A duality exists in that while anxiety is largely unnecessarily and generally detrimental to one’s mental health, there are in fact things that warrant anxiety and wariness. The irony here is that these things are necessarily unknown. The solution to achieving a balance, then, is using one’s discretion in recognizing and defuse those fears that arise unnecessarily.

  16. I appreciate that this reading acknowledges the importance of the ego in our lives. The timing of my doing this homework has been of specific interest to me because I only earlier today found out that Pluto is currently in retrograde. Pluto going into retrograde apparently encourages the use of one’s ego as a protective measure from abusive. Our ego serves as a tool to help us to stand up for ourselves and achieve the goals we have set for ourselves to lead us to succeed in life.
    I find it of significant importance that we recognize that something such as the ego, which if allowed to run rampant can be a negative thing, still has its place in our existence. Just as certain germs help our body to survive. The balance of the negative and positive aspects of the universe are important to recognize and accept. Death has a place, chaos has a place, dark energies have their place and purpose to ensure the survival of the universe. We are products of the universe and therefore function in similar ways. We must change the language we use to describe that which is perceived as negative in our society, to foster a better understanding of how we must operate in the world as human beings.

  17. Indeed, is the attachment to the ego that creates all of our struggles in life. Whenever we act on a feeling, we are identifying with the ego. In this sense, the ego appears more as a source of pain. There is a duality here in the way that the ego is the source of our arrogance and ignorance.

    On the one hand, one is inclined to hold on to the ego. To renounce it completely is to deny personal history, friends and loved ones, and essentially one’s whole life. Without the ego, one would literally starve to death. Unless one is a nihilist, that cannot be the answer. However, to fully identify with it seems to be fallacious as well. Without transcending the ego-identity even if only momentarily, it is difficult to conceive of oneself objectively and reflect earnestly and without significant bias.

    In my opinion, there must be a balance between the ego and the lack of ego. To identify with it so as to more fully understand the nature of our experience and yet be distanced from it so that it does not impede our presence in the now.

  18. This chapter is on the ego. We use the i as a separate entity to exist within the world. By doing this we maintain an amount of choosing and control between us and others. But the process of thinking is essential for both thought and choice. It is not a one sided component and the understanding of the ego is essential for the way in which we engage in this life.
    We want to come to a point where the I becomes less essential in our experiences, where true beauty can blossom. It is truly difficult to only experience the experience and not the i- this is because the ego is constantly resurfacing. But within these experiences, if we are acting and receiving then the ego becomes less and less important.

    Our thoughts are always engaged and we have to pay attention in order to listen. To be silenced is to let go of the ego for an amount of time. The ego cannot exist in the now, we are too preoccupied of where we are in the development of our lives. The silence which comes out of the beauty is one which comes out of silence. I agree with this idea and that the knowledge and understanding of beauty is in contrast to the ego. In order to experience a beauty in this life one must understand the ego and attempt to listen and act in order for it to not be a dominant force in being.

    Namaste

  19. This chapter goes to my point. First of all, McAfee in his conclusion has seen that the thought and the thinker are artifical divisions. This division leads to the ego. He states that reality be seen as thought. He also puts forth the proposition that the thinker would not think without the thought, which is why we have think all the time. He remedies this through finding silence by doing yoga, and feeling silence.
    Buddhism also sees this the same way. As I touched in my last essay, the “monkey mind” or the mind that wanders all the time, is something to be overcome. This is also to be found through breathing meditation.
    I happen to believe that there is an objective reality. A muslim philosopher named Averroes touched upon the problem of whether the universe exists outside the mind. However, I can say that, while the relationship between the stimulated and the stimuli is very essential to the human condition, it does not arise from it. However, meditation and yoga can help you live in the moment better.

  20. The ultimate goal of the Yamas is to eliminate the ego. A very interesting paradigm is delivered: thought created the thinker. The reading explains that through thinking, we have divided our experience (perceiver/perception, chooser/choice), which in turn gives our ego a chance to react to such thoughts, thoughts that take place in the past or future and consume our time in the present. Although I hadn’t realized it myself until I heard it read, when we experience moments of beauty, the “I” disappears. I can’t agree more with that statement. Beautiful experiences bring us out of the past and the future and leave us in the present, free from our ego for brief moments in the now, and when we practice yoga, this is what we are trying to achieve for ourselves.

  21. This final reading seems, as with other readings, to talk in circles. While McAfee states that the ego only exists in the past and future, that it cannot exist in the now, he then goes on to state that “If we observe ourselves in our relationships – through our actions, thoughts and feelings as they are happening-then we will catch a glimpse of the ego.” “As they are happening” – to me that means in the present, as it exists now. Maybe I am just listening to this a little too literally, but they seem like opposing thoughts to me.

    I do appreciate the talk of constant thoughts and of our actions, choices, perceptions all based on our constant thoughts. I thought it was just me that couldn’t shut their mind down!! I would love to be able to get to the point where my mind is not wandering, thinking, analyzing, etc. I have had experiences (whether of beauty or fear) where I was able to sit back and just experience the moment, but I certainly am hoping to expand my practice to be able to silence my mind, at least some of the time anyway.

  22. As stated in the readings the discussion of the yama’s were all leading to the ego. The ego is an intergral part of our personhood. But it can also cause harm to our emotional well being when it is out of balance. When our ego, or the construction of our personality based off of skills, knowledge, interests etc, takes up too much space it can be a very negative thing.

    As the quote in the paragraph states, when we are able to recognize and acknowledge our egos, they will disappear and be replaced with a silence. I think this silence is something we will all need occasionally.

  23. I always hear not to let one’s ego get in the way, though most people tend to. Getting the best of us in quick moments. I know now that ego can come up in moments that I don’t even realize but they IK practices allow me to soothe the ego.

    I can honestly say that after listening to this e few times I’m still not in a place of complete understanding, ego definitely has the ability to get in the way but are we being told to forgo all of the egos or to simply acknowledge the moments when ego does arise? I believe I got a little jumbled with “the thinkers”.

    I hope it was meaning to say to acknowledge it as it is part of the human experience. To note when negative thoughts or feelings arise and to use IK techniques to get through it. That is how I’ve learned to process things because of this class. As I type this up, I’m starting to believe that’s what it meant.

    • Your evaluation is accurate for you at this time and I’m sure as you continue to grow and ponder issues like these your perspective may shift and change. The important factor is that you have invested your own thoughts to arrive at your viewpoint. Namaste

  24. We rarely exists in the present moment, but in those few moments when we do live in the present we leave our ego behind until the moment finishes. For the majority of the time we are both ego and action (thinker and the thought) one can not exist without the other.

    This is actually something that I contemplate quiet often as a writer. I try to sit down and write what happening around me and all of my thoughts that go with it, but even so I still am not letting the moment flow freely I’m forcing a moment to be present.

  25. I feel like it is true that we live our lives with constant rumination. I struggle with this in particular, I feel is every moment is ruled by the constant chatter of my mind. It doesn’t stop, and it prevents me from living in the present moment. Living in the present is something I want to obtain, and it would help me out monumentally. However, I do believe mindfulness is something I can’t achieve by just shutting out my thoughts. I am the thinker, and I need to understand why my thoughts exist in order to let them flow through me. Shutting them out and pushing them down would just make it worse on me. If I can just understand what need my thoughts want me to fulfill, such as self love, I may be able to let them stop hurting me.

    • If you could allow times for quiet reflection this provides a time for your cells to regroup, reboot and start fresh. Try doing the Finger Holds practice daily. Namaste

  26. Like all of the yamas reading, this chapter focused on ego. Success of the Yamas can be found be quieting our ego, and choosing to be a part of collective humanity. We need to accept that while we are literally individual, spiritually we are all part of one being (which was discussed in the assignment before this one).

    This reading was particularly insightful for me because, like many others, I have struggled with anxiety for the majority of my life. Being able to quiet my mind, and focus on being a part of the collective like we do in Hatha yoga, has vastly improved my life and lessened my anxiety. I would say in the past few years, while anxiety related to myself has decreased, my anxiety has increased in relation to how safe I feel I am in the world. This probably is also affected by current political events.

    Taking the moments for my IK and yoga practice are crucial to calming myself, and reminding myself of the positivity and light in the collective humanity I am a part of. I do feel focused towards my own individual career goals and dreams, but am doing my best to be as present in the current moment as well.

  27. This entry speaks about the ego and its role in all other parts of the yamas. The ego is the leader in all parts; the actor, the thinker, etc. The ego exists at almost every moment of our existence. When we experience a moment or event truly profound, our thinker ceases, and thus our ego slips away momentarily. At that moment, we are thoughtless, and therefore egoless. These moments are fleeting but are the truest moments in which we are not trying to be or not be something, thus being the secret to success. When we have these moments, we are not thinking of how we can be non-attached, non-stealing, or any of the other parts of the yamas. We are at true peace.

    I find the moment that a person is awestruck by an event or an occurrence, that is the purest and the most peaceful a person can be. These moments are extremely hard to find and are extremely fleeting. These are the moments I find most peace, and I am glad to say that now that I have learned about these yamas, I will appreciate these moments after they happen much more than I ever have before.

    Thank you for allowing me to learn these things, and helping me to find a way to better embrace these moments of absolute peace.

  28. This chapter discusses ignorance as the root to ego. It never occurred to me that ignorance and ego are related to each other. It seemed to me that arrogance was associated with lies, but I do see what McAfee is trying to say. Ignorance and ego are related because someone has an ego to disconnected themselves from themselves. Egos give people different personas that they can play/become when they are in a situation of stress or fear.

    Having an ego is a tricky thing, in my opinion. I feel it gives people confidence to things they would not normally do, but can also lead to someone to become a narcissist. I have put on an ego here and there when I feel I am out of my comfort and need a boost of confidence. I do understand where McAfee is coming from, people need to become one with themselves.

    -Saida

  29. I find it interesting how this audio touches on the fact of staying within that moment. I sometimes find it hard to stay within that moment, especially if it is boring, simply because my mind likes to wonder. It likes to think of irrelevant incidents which is sometimes hard to control. I find that the IK practice is what helps my mind stay in that present moment because my mind is at ease. I think this audio also wants us to understand our egos. It wants us to realize the bigger the ego is the more confident or prideful you are. It is basically letting our emotions get the best of us; our ego is another way to show emotions. I think individuals must have the balance of pride, ego, and self-esteem. I feel these three qualities put together can help fully understand the experience we get during the present and future.

    • Remember you are greater than your mind, you are as vast as the Cosmos, stop letting your mind hijack you, invest in stillness it’s when your higher Self can reboot, OM

  30. In this final reading of “The Secret of the Yamas” by John McAfee, the impact the ego has in our thoughts, actions, and feelings is discussed. Thinking has been divided into the thought and the thinker, actions into act and actor, perception into the perceiver and the object, the chooser and the choice, but despite these divisions, one cannot exist without the other. We forget ourselves in moments of profound beauty or danger, allowing the “I” to disappear and leave us only with the experience. We seldom take note of the impact of these moments and the ego takes over again. The ego also thrives on the thoughts that rise from memory.

    After listening to this final reading, I realize how infused the ego is to our perception of our experiences. For me personally, I am constantly thinking and reminiscing on thoughts that stem from the past. This reading opened up a new realm of thought of me to consider, a realm where observing my actions and relationships with others will give me glimpses into being one with all.

  31. The ego is only presented in the past and future, not present time, only the experience that’s happening exists. Our egos is always reacting, but we should realize that we are not our thoughts, actions, or ego. We let our egos get in the way of our experiences which keeps us distracted from our goals and creates obstacles. We are often identified with our egos because we mentally attached to it, but it only creates more struggles and conflicts in our present life. Our egos does help us stand up for ourselves in a social environment which can create positives, but if you’re basing your life off your ego characteristics, you will not find pure bliss. All the Yamas are rooted by our ignorance and egos, both having no capacity of being honest because of the division between our conscious and unconscious. Our conscious can’t handle the whole truth because we are often repressed or denied from it, until we work to uncover the truth. We must be motivated to help ourselves through goals and opportunities, not by our ego minds. The ego makes us focus on the past and our mistakes which takes us away from the present moment. We must experience everything from a cleared and pure conscious without jealousy or judgement. We must practice with the intention and offering energy of your practice to something outside of ourself and our egos.

    -Melenie Warner

  32. This final reading covers on the topic of egos. It is easy to spot another person’s ego than your own. Most of our actions and reactions are made up of our egos and pride. And sometimes to an outsider, the action can seem ridiculous but to the person who is actually reacting to the situation is blinded by the right and wrong choice with trying to maintain a high ego. Speaking on yoga terms I feel, and I could be wrong, but I think the ego almost comes out as a defense mechanism. Meaning that unconsciously people excuse their actions and the way they are based on their egos.
    It is weird now that every time there is a Yama chapter I can relate it to something personal in my life. With this audio, I can relate with personal experience that, I do sometimes accidentally care more about my ego in certain situations than the “big picture”.
    My Isha Kriya has been going well. Although I have not done them regularly this week from having a lot of work and studying piled up. Although I switched up doing y IK at night to when I come home from classes whether it is at 12pm or 5pm usually. My sleeping is still good even when I do not do it before bed. I just find it easier to concentrate doing the IK after work and school, and escape the real world for a bit.

    • Perhaps consider your IK practice as a way to continue to evolve into your best Self, better prepared to meet all responsibilities with calm and success, instead of an escape, OM

  33. When I think of ego, I think of fear and desperation. I am reminded of just how helpless I feel and I sometimes cling to ego to make myself feel stable, like I am anchored down to something. However, I end up feeling unworthy and even more helpless when I do use ego. I am tire of ego and would like to let go of it so that I may simply live my life out doing the things that make me happy without the anxiety of not being good enough to do them. In order to do this, I must let go of ego and enjoy the now. All I have is time, so why not enjoy it?

    As for yoga, I believe that yoga does help calm the mind and create stillness in the otherwise chaotic mind. I think it helps to make one feel connected and whole, but I am not sure if we glimpse immortality. All I know for sure is that yoga is beneficial to improving ones’ attitude and perspective while silencing the ego if only briefly.

  34. All our vices are interconnected, and they all come back to one thing: the ego. For most of us, ego is arrogance and self righteousness. We see it in other people, but we think we are better. In reality, we all have an ego which hurts us on a daily basis. This is because our ego separates us from the present world. We divide our experiences, creating thought and thinker, action and actor, perception and perceiver, chooser and choice. However, the ego does not truly exist. It is only created by thought. What we need to do is let go of the ego. The ego wants continuity and permanence. In order for this to occur, our minds must always be running. We must always be planning, organizing, thinking about the past, fantasizing, and judging. The ego is never silent. Since our egos are always planning, the ego cannot exist in the moment. Consequently, neither can we and we are incapable or seeing beauty. We cannot live in the moment and cannot be truly happy.

    Society today makes it almost impossible to get rid of the ego. Although we may not realize it, we all have controlling egos. We plan because we are told it is the responsible thing to do. We feel the weight of societal pressure on our shoulders and react by giving in to demands. We plan because we are afraid of the unknown. However, it is a beautiful thing. Part of the reason why we cannot enjoy it for long is because we have forgotten how to enjoy things. Now, whenever we experience something beautiful, we pull out our phones, posting on social media and texting people. We cannot take in the moment. We have essentially forgotten how to relax.

    Hatha yoga, as mentioned, truly does give us a glimpse into serenity and the abandonment of the ego. When we do yoga, we let go of the world around us. We make time specifically to just exist. When we finally start to sit down on a daily basis and spend time manipulating energy, we find how amazing it is to live in the moment. We feel light and free from worry, and indeed for the moment we are. We are more aware to nature and less irritable. As we keep practicing, our concentration can increase, enhancing our experiences. Now that the weather is nicer, I have begun to practice my yoga outside or with my windows open. I find that after practicing yoga and feeling at peace these past few months, I am better able to enjoy the moment. I really think this is great for all people. It is true happiness to live in the moment, and so relaxing. If more people truly relaxed and forgot the ego, the world would be much less rushed, and more calm.

  35. While this is not a thought process I had associated with the word ego before , as someone with GAD (general anxiety disorder) , it is something I am all too familiar with. The word ego is an interesting one to attach to the sentiment because it definitely all performative. It invades your thoughts and contaminates your future alignment and thus skewing your trajectory from the present. Because of that distance it creates it solidifies the reality of a completely unreal projection of the future, without proper attention this can become something that not only changes your life but you as a whole. When I first realized this I was so far away from my path to a healthy lifestyle and mindset . It has taken over three years of consciousness and hard work to be able to identify and control my ego in order to live in the now, which in turn lays out a path for me in the future. I am grateful every day I was able to come to this realization and will now be conscious no matter what happens in life.

  36. Silence is beautiful. I was just chatting with a friend earlier about how wonderful it is that we finally are experiencing, real Spring weather. She told me that for the first time today she had gone for a run and forgotten her headphones, thus resulting in her taking a quite run. I asked her thoughts- was she lonely, bored, scared? Her response was unexpected. She told me that she heard her feet as they touched the Earth. She recognized the way in which her sneakers scratched the dirt road as she treaded harder on her way. She found the beautiful Earth to be a running companion. This video concludes the concept so beautifully. We must take time to slow down, unplug and appreciate the beautiful Earth that is right in front of our very eyes. We must appreciate the silence and take time to find the unique beauty within it.

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