befriend wrote:how does one practice dhamma without feeling that they are somehow better, or special. sorry if i already asked this, but as i grow psycho emotionally from practicing morality and what not, i am genuinely afraid of getting a big head about it, as i already have. is there a practice i can do to safeguard me from developing conceit? thanks. befriend
You can try noticing when you start praising yourself and disparaging others in your thoughts and then apply one of the five ways of removing unwholesome thoughts from MN 20. Just noticing and thus bringing this kind of mental action into consciousness is helpful by itself and is the prerequisite to doing anything about it.
Of course that's a gross form of conceit which crosses over into ill will. The more subtle forms of conceit must be attenuated much more slowly because the fetter of conceit isn't fully eradicated until arahantship. And as the Bhikkhuni sutta mentions, conceit should be used as a means in the meantime.