LauraLynn Jansen

Asmita, a philosophical pondering


Translates from Sanskrit as “ego.” In the ancient Indian text, the Yoga Sutra, Patanjali (a yogic sage) interprets asmita as “false identification.”

I think of ego/asmita often, especially as I battle the demons telling me I am egotistical to write a book about my life. How much ego it too much? Too little? Not enough? I wonder what the perfect balance is to succeed in the eye of the public in 2009? I wonder if Oprah, Ellen or other famous individuals check their egos?

Indian texts see the asmita as a mistaken identity where our focus is on the mental, physical, emotional and sensing self, instead of our essence. I recently read a brief writing on this in the September issue of Yoga Journal. The author writes, “It’s easy for the Self to become obscured by the whirlwind of the mind that pushes us to have more or to be thinner, the part of us that identifies with our job title, our status, or the way we look…”

I see it in myself living in a more urban environment with everything at my disposal, it is so easy to become distracted from the core self. As an Integrative Health Coach I have witnessed the ability to re/connect being made in my clients. Some experience this syncing up through their somatic realm, others obtain it through the emotional or spiritual aspects of their self.

I recognize the desire for this hooking into the self (myself), and when I stray from it. At times I long for the LauraLynn who thrived on cooking every day even though eating out is so much “easier” now; and even though I came to cooking because the options for healthy eating were limited in the Texas border town where I lived. A sacrifice? Possibly, and at times it felt like a relief to nourish myself and/or others who visited my kitchen.

I miss that slower pace.

A pace that assisted me in easily staying connected with my authentic self. I am trying to conjure up where that feeling stemmed from. What were the essential ingredients and can I make them happen here in amidst the land of many egos and power hungriness? Every day is filled with the practice of feeling satisfaction, true satisfaction. Constant check-in mode around the ego/amista is where I reside often as the material world tugs at me to participate in all the fun. It is a continuous work of balance.

I imagine this to be true for most of human beings.

Posted in amista, Blog, connecting to self, ego, modern world dilemmas, philosophy on October 1, 2009.

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