This paper was presented at the
National Seminar on
Indian Psychology: Theories and Models

SVYASA, Bangalore,
December 26 - 28, 2007



Ego in Indian philosophy

N.V. Raghuram — SVYASA Bangalore


Bhakti which is the most important Sadhana techniques emphasizes that Bhakti is not to find god but to surrender your ego. One of the important bhaktas Kabir, expresses, “I was searching for you, Oh, god, in hills and forests, in rivers and mountains, but I never found you. and today god is searching, ‘where are you Kabir’, but Kabir is not there.” This indicates surrendering ego is the path of Bhakti. Then we have an important question; that is, “if Ego is bad, then why god has created it and where are we going wrong.” The answer, Indian philosophy gives, is ego itself is not bad; only, how we apply, makes it good or bad. It is like, fire itself is not bad, but how we use fire, makes it good or bad, useful or damaging. In this talk detailed explanation is given about the good aspect of ego and bad aspect of ego. Ego has three different aspects which are the ‘doer ego, experiencer ego and the identifier ego’. These aspects of ego are useful in life without which, life is not possible. But they can also be poisoned with lack of proper understanding which can bring misery and psychological stress. Therefore without understanding if we simply say to surrender every ego, then it is wrong. Why and how these three aspects are good and what makes it wrong will be discussed in details in the talk. understanding this is immensely beneficial to, not only solve the problems of suffering in life, but it also helps us to grow in spiritual journey.

Email the author, Mr. N.V. Raghuram, at