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The “Me” of Love: Escape from Ego

The “Me” of Love: Escape from Ego

Like an individual, a couple can pursue power and money, or at the very least security and comfort. Love gets left behind because it won’t bring material rewards, at least not as clearly as unloving tactics will.

Money and power require toughness, the willingness to fight for what you want. You are better off having a killer instinct, not a loving heart, if you pursue these things. Security and comfort also require looking out for number one. In this case one has become two; nothing else has changed.

How many couples bond together by forming a “we” that is just a stronger, tougher version of “me”? We can’t be surprised when this happens. If survival is paramount in a dangerous world, two are better at it than one.

Undoubtedly mutual ego needs have a place in every relationship. The real problem occurs when they obliterate the tender growth of love in its spiritual aspect. Long before we fall in love, we know more than enough about our needs. Acquiring an ally to fulfill them isn’t the same as getting free from them. Only love can free us, because its truth is an antidote to fear.

The exhilaration of falling in love is an escape from ego, its sense of threat, and its selfishness. This escape is what we really want. Whatever rewards it brings, the ego cannot do two things: it cannot abolish fear, since ego is founded on fear; and it cannot create love, since ego by definition shuts out love.

The reason that ego and love are not compatible comes down to this: You cannot take your ego into the unknown, where love wants to lead. Love will make your feelings ambiguous, and the ego wants to feel the certainty of right and wrong. However, uncertainty is the basis of life.


Adapted from The Path to Love, by Deepak Chopra (Three Rivers Press, 1997).

Read more: Deepak Chopra's Tips, Spirit, , , , , ,

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Deepak Chopra

Acknowledged as one of the world's greatest leaders in the field of mind body medicine, Deepak Chopra, M.D. continues to transform our understanding of the meaning of health. Chopra is known as a prolific author of over 49 books with 12 best sellers on mind-body health, quantum mechanics, spirituality, and peace. A global force in the field of human empowerment, Dr. Chopra's books have been published in more than 35 languages with more than 20 million copies in print.

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7:02PM PST on Nov 8, 2012


3:19AM PDT on Oct 5, 2012

The claim that ego and love are not compatible is problematic. This is because without an ego not only would we not get out of bed in the morning but there would be no identifiable person who feels love for another. This means you have to have some sense of ego to be able to feel love for your spouse. Furthermore the seperation of love from ego is classic dualistic thinking. What makes more sense is learning to control the ego to the point where you can put others interests ahead of your this point ego and love unite.

10:56PM PDT on Oct 4, 2012


11:35AM PDT on Oct 4, 2012


7:42AM PDT on Oct 4, 2012

Thanks for this post.

4:12PM PDT on Oct 3, 2012


3:31PM PDT on Oct 3, 2012

thank you!!

10:35AM PDT on Oct 3, 2012


8:03AM PDT on Oct 3, 2012

Well, I can laugh and cry with this one, Deepak,... and friendly readers,....
This sizes up why my relationships often hit a wall of resistance. I like the unknown and the mystery - the wonder and the romance - which the 'love' experience offers. It also explains why I am not very materialistic, and now in my 60s still not driven to achieve the 'stuff' which drives the capitalistic culture. Oh, don't get me wrong, I like to be comfortable, and nice things ARE nice,... but, my joy comes in the realm where all things are Miracles and when two people love, it is for 'cherishing' and 'ultimate caring.' It seems these things are frequently left behind in our hurry - get rich - global consciousness.
Example from television programs of the past: Watching "The Rifleman" is a wonderful story of a widowed father raising his son in the 1880s. Each story is held together by the love-bond between these two characters. How often do we get to see such role models in our culture today?
How often do we see this in the modern role models - of marriages, today?

7:02AM PDT on Oct 3, 2012

Thank you.

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