Ego?

A forum for beginners and members of other Buddhist traditions to ask questions about Theravāda (The Way of the Elders). Responses require moderator approval before they are visible.

Ego?

Postby nrose619 » Thu Dec 06, 2012 11:10 pm

I understand an aim of Buddhism is to diminish one's ego but is the ego and self confidence the same thing?
"A silver bird
flies over the autumn lake.
When it has passed,
the lake's surface does not try
to hold on to the image of the bird."
User avatar
nrose619
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Wed Nov 28, 2012 10:32 pm

Re: Ego?

Postby Dan74 » Fri Dec 07, 2012 12:27 am

The aim of Buddhism, as far as I can make out, is to let go of delusion and suffering that is based on it. Ego, insofar, as it is a fantasy, is seen through, not gotten rid of. It's handy for all sorts of things!
_/|\_
User avatar
Dan74
 
Posts: 2701
Joined: Sun Mar 01, 2009 11:12 pm

Re: Ego?

Postby Alobha » Fri Dec 07, 2012 1:11 am

nrose619 wrote:I understand an aim of Buddhism is to diminish one's ego but is the ego and self confidence the same thing?


Hi nrose619.
great question! From my perspective the Buddha did not talk so much about self-confidence, but ego and self-confidence is not the same. The ego is a constructed thing, it's the identification with things and (wrongly) taken them to be a "self". In fact, this is actually a great obstacle for what we understand as self-confidence! The fear to be wrong, the fear to be the target of blame, danger, anger etc. is based on the assumption that there is an "I", an ego that can be hurt! No ego, no problem! ;)

Letting go of the habit of identifying end ego-boosting is one thing. It does not mean that there is no self-confidence after that. Something that is similar to self-confidence is dhamma-chanda, sometimes called Zeal or confidence: http://www.dhammawiki.com/index.php?title=Zeal
It's a confidence that results from seeing from one's own practice that the teachings of the Buddha are correct The results, in terms of confident behaviour, can be cleary seen. I think many experienced practitioners can tell you stories how the practice made them less anxious in their interaction with other people and more relaxed about themselves. So, less ego does not mean less self-confidence. It can be quite empowering to follow the path, to see that you're not the slave of your desires, but that you can be free from enmity and fear, that your happiness does ultimatively not depend on the situation or other people, but that peace and happiness are found and established within. Another frequent experience is that with the practice people open up to being in the present moment and not running away from the challenges in life by means of distraction, drugs etc. The experience, that the present moment is nothing that needs to be feared, that life's just the way it is, that one can accept the way things are without being fearful, sad, angry or otherwise irritated... I guess you could call that self-confidence, too. I'd rather call it confidence towards life, or confidence toward things being ok. Or Fearlessness of life. You get the idea?

I hope that helps you with the question.

Best wishes,
Alobha
User avatar
Alobha
 
Posts: 427
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 8:27 pm
Location: Germany

Re: Ego?

Postby Yana » Fri Dec 07, 2012 1:58 am

Hi nrose619,

Ego is not the same as self-confidence or just 'confidence'.

To diminish one's ego
means to diminish all the problems that arise from having related to "this ego" in the first place.

Problems such as pride,conceit, self-centeredness,low self esteem, bruising one's ego" even fear,worry and anxiety.

All these things are seen from the perspective of an ego.The ego feels threatened,feels entitled ,feels hurt etc,and so forth.

Without the ego all this would seem very minor.

Which is a good thing because usually people are enslaved by it and imprisoned by it's wishes.

Therefore if you are free from these ego related problems then what you get is freedom and in freedom you will have no trouble being confident.And this sort of confidence is the best sort of confidence,

one that is free from greed,hate and delusion.

:anjali:
Life is preparing for Death
Yana
 
Posts: 397
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2012 8:45 am

Re: Ego?

Postby Kusala » Fri Dec 07, 2012 5:23 am

nrose619 wrote:I understand an aim of Buddhism is to diminish one's ego but is the ego and self confidence the same thing?


You might want to read this article by Thanissaro Bhikkhu... http://integral-options.blogspot.com/20 ... r-ego.html
Image

Homage to the Buddha
Thus indeed, is that Blessed One: He is the Holy One, fully enlightened, endowed with clear vision and virtuous conduct, sublime, the Knower of the worlds, the incomparable leader of men to be tamed, the teacher of gods and men, enlightened and blessed.

Homage to the Teachings
The Dhamma of the Blessed One is perfectly expounded; to be seen here and now; not delayed in
time; inviting one to come and see; onward leading (to Nibbana); to be known by the wise, each for himself.
User avatar
Kusala
 
Posts: 475
Joined: Sun Jan 23, 2011 11:02 am

Re: Ego?

Postby DAWN » Fri Dec 07, 2012 2:52 pm

In self confidence there is 'a self'.
Sabbe dhamma anatta
We are not concurents...
I'am sorry for my english
User avatar
DAWN
 
Posts: 801
Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2012 5:22 pm

Re: Ego?

Postby drifting cloud » Fri Dec 07, 2012 11:19 pm

nrose619 wrote:I understand an aim of Buddhism is to diminish one's ego but is the ego and self confidence the same thing?


The aim of Buddhism is liberation from suffering.

"Ego" is a concept from Western psychoanalysis/psychology.

As far as I can tell these two things don't have much to do with one another.
User avatar
drifting cloud
 
Posts: 53
Joined: Tue Jul 31, 2012 2:24 am


Return to Discovering Theravāda

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest