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Re: How Many Egos?

Oct 26, 1998 05:30 AM
by Jerry Schueler

    If we are going to talk about "egos" then we would have to define them.
    I would define ego as a sense of identity complete with memory
    of a past. 
    If there is ONE CONSCIOUSNESS that is aware of "Egoity" as a quality of "I-ness" -- then how and why would we have several ?
    When this one consciousness focuses through a body or vehicle, it takes
    on a sense of identity.  Consciousness itself has no sense of identity or
    self as opposed to a world or not-self.
    Are you thinking of schizophrenia where apparently the physical body/brain becomes the periodical or sequential habitat of several "personalities" --- each with a different name and persons, etc... that is rather abnormal and might be classified under "possession," or "obsession."  Conditions which theosophy also considers under the concept of "Mediumship," and which would be the result of "passivity."
    I was not thinking of that. However, the fact of multiple-personalities shows
    us how fragile the whole idea of ego is, and I tend to agree with Alan Watts
    (a Zen Buddhist) that the ego is a "social fiction" and has no real existence.
    In the normal condition -- that of all of us, the phenomena of "multiple personalities" would be rare -- and the memory of experiences in other states might be accurate or blurred depending on the development of the faculty of "concentration," or "attention"  (both "Will: faculties of the Mind == manas ==) as I understand it.

    Any ideas ?
    Actually, I think that we all have multiple-personalities, but usually only one
    is dominate.  But at times I know that I can be a husband, a father, a friend,
    a business consultant, a counselor, and so on, each with its own (weak) 
    sense of identity. Identities and ego's come and go. Consciousness is
    with us all the time.
    Jerry Schueler

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