This phrase has been wildly used in self-help books (Byron Katie, Eckhart Tolle) to help us diminish our egos. For those of you who don’t understand why we need to diminish our egos to begin with, I will attempt to paraphrase.
Early on, our egos were incredibly beneficial to our survival. It’s how technology came to exist (it’s really how everything came to exist). The concept of how we can be better than our competitors made Silicon Valley what it is today.
As time has passed, we let our egos dominate our lives and no longer used it as a tool. We used it as a weapon. Now, ego has become an entity that has ensnared us like “Invasion of the Body Snatchers.”
The gurus have been talking about a spiritual shift on our planet that is pushing people to the next level of evolution. After reading tons of literature on it, I have come to realize though, in order to glide through this transition smoothly, it’s time to WAKE UP. Seriously, wake the f— up!
Eckhart Tolle, author of “A New Earth,” uses the phrase “pain body” to describe what happens when ego dominates your life. It causes anger, jealousy, conflict and unhappiness in your relationships, at work, with your family and feeds off itself like food. If you are AWAKE you can you use ego and the pain body as one of the best tools for your own evolution. As soon as you feel the pain body of anger swirling inside your chest and about to reach your mouth to say something, try teaching your body to use that feeling as a LOUD alarm that your ego is dominating your life and about to make it much worse as soon as it comes out of your mouth. The ONLY way to kill ego is for you to do NOTHING to retaliate.
I know, I know. It sounded impossible to me at first but it’s amazing what happens when you do NOTHING. You actually stop the war by using no defense and parts of the ego that you have built up over the course of your lifetime start to diminish.
In the beginning, you usually become awake to it after you have already blurted out pain body statements to someone, but as time goes on, you notice the pain body brewing before it even reaches your mouth and are able to stop the cycle.
The one question I had for Eckhart Tolle when I met him was about this. I asked, “If we are not supposed to defend ourselves, then some of us will seem guilty for things we are being accused of. How do we do what you are saying then?”
His response was, “You respond with a simple statement. Tell the person the truth with no emotional attachment to it and once you do, you are done. You shouldn’t defend yourself at all after that. Most people get caught up in starting a war to prove it with more words or anger. Once the truth is stated, move on. Otherwise you have started the war.”
I tested this over five years and I will tell you that he is right. If you are tired of conflict, jealousy and sadness, I urge you to try this awesome tool. Its one of the hardest things to do but has the best rewards.