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My Ego Is A Wounded Animal

Lissa Rankin's picture

Lissa Rankin

I’ve always had a funky relationship with the concept of the ego. It seems to get all muddy because different people use the term to mean different things. Sigmund Freud refers to the ego as part of a triad - the “id” is the set of uncoordinated instinctual trends; the ego is the organized, realistic part; and the super-ego plays the critical and moralizing roles.

Then there are definitions used in spiritual teachings like A Course In Miracles, which essentially defines the ego as the illusion of separation. The ego is the part of us that believes that we are not God, not interconnected to all beings in divine Oneness.

And of course, there’s the garden variety use of the word “ego,” as it’s used in the word “egotistical,” which Dictionary.com defines as “given to talking about oneself; vain; boastful; opinionated.  Indifferent to the well-being of others; selfish.”

Ick. Suffice it to say the ego seems like all around badness, right?

And yet we all have one, because we’re all human, no matter how holy we try to be.  

The ego has massive blind spots, things we can't see when we get caught up in it. The ego gets between us and the Divine, sabotages our attempts to heal others and ourself, and cuts us off from the life blood of the Universe. And yet, the ego never dies. And shouldn't. Because it's part of being human. It's all about knowing your ego, seeing beyond the blind spots, and keeping your ego under check. Making friends with and managing my own ego has been part of my personal growth for years, so I thought I'd invite you inside to witness a little bit of my process.

Meet Victoria Rochester

I call my ego Victoria Rochester (which, incidentally, is the name I wished my mother gave me when I was a little girl.) Victoria (pictured above) is unabashedly a diva.  She loves couture gowns, fine champagne, and getting carted around in a limo.  She loves spotlights on stages in front of throngs of people.  She wants her book to get on the New York Times bestseller list.  She drools when you all read her blog posts.

While she doesn’t demand only green M&Ms in the green room (she prefers green juice), she knows what she likes and how she likes it. She can be downright nasty to waiters who bring her salad loaded with bell peppers when she already warned them she's allergic.  She brings her own pillow when she travels.  She sleeps with a sound machine that plays rain sounds.

Victoria is HIGH MAINTENANCE. And she’s unapologetic about it.

Victoria loves hanging around famous people. It makes her feel important, like she matters, like she belongs. When Victoria spent the evening with Mama Gena, Kanye West, and Hugh Grant, Victoria started preening. She was delighted to discover herself on page 6 of the New York Post.

Victoria is super confident. She knows she can accomplish anything she sets her mind to. She’s determined and strong-willed and persistent and deep down, in her little girl heart, she’s tender and fragile and wounded and lonely and just wants to be loved and accepted, to feel worthy and seen.  She's never satisfied. She never feels like she's done enough, accomplished enough, gotten enough love. She always wants MORE. 

Victoria is on a mission to change the world, to heal health care, to get on television, to write that bestseller, to save people by teaching them how to heal themselves, so she can pat herself on the back and say, "Look how valuable you are." Victoria wants to feel like she matters because she's not really sure she does.

Meet Lissa-nanda

Then there’s this other part of me, the part my friend Steve Sisgold titled “Lissa-nanda” (“nanda” is Sanskrit for joy and is also the name of Hindu and Buddhist deities.)  Lissa-nanda loves everybody, like REALLY loves everybody.  She doesn’t judge anyone or make anyone less-than or more-than.  When strangers look into the eyes of Lissa-nanda (not the eyes of Victoria, mind you, who sometimes takes over on book tours and can give you the evil eye for getting too close to her personal space), they see sweet, soft, pure, unconditional, magical eyes that channel divine love.

As I explained in this post, Lissa-nanda channels books, blog posts, and Daily Flames from your Inner Pilot Light. She’s the part that shows up after I meditate and pray “Make me a vessel.” She knows that even when she has what her BFF and spiritual counselor Tricia Barrett calls “her holy ideas,” she doesn’t get to claim credit for them, because they’re not hers to begin with.

Lissa-nanda is a true visionary with the heart of a healer. She is a bodhisattva-in-training, committed to easing the suffering of others. She wants nothing more than to be of service in this world and to serve out her life’s purpose. She's willing to sacrifice anything if it's part of her Divine mission here on earth. She's not attached to any outcomes and surrenders to Divine will. Lissa-nanda doesn't care about ego wins, like how many hits her website gets, how much media attention she gets, or whether her books become bestsellers. She's pure love and just wants to radiate that love into the world in whatever way best serves the world and allows her to express her gifts. Lissa-nanda is my Inner Pilot Light.

The War

Inside of me, there’s a war going on between Victoria and Lissa-nanda these days, and trust me, it ain’t pretty. Lissa-nanda knows that Victoria needs to be tamed, and she knows the only way to tame her is to love her. But Victoria is like a wild animal trapped in a cage.

Lissa-nanda hangs out mostly at home in her pajamas, because she’s shy, introverted, and needs a lot of personal space. She meditates, hikes in nature, does yoga, and reads inspiration/spiritual books to facilitate her evolving awakening.

Because Lissa-nanda is so committed to being of true service, she makes great efforts to send Victoria to time out when she’s working with her mentoring clients and leading workshops. Lissa-nanda does most of the writing.

In the past, Victoria has been the one who shows up out in the world because she’s fearless and confident and willing to get out of her pajamas. Victoria has nerves of steel. She can harness the butterflies in her belly to conquer even the worst stage fright. She goes on book tour and gives TEDx talks, though Lissa-nanda writes the books and the speeches.  Victoria keynotes events where 3,000 people are watching her. At one point, she showed up for twenty television interviews in one day on a satellite media tour.

On those days, Victoria comes in handy, because frankly, Lissa-nanda freaks out.

But over the past year, Lissa-nanda has been practicing getting out more and Victoria is wigging out. Victoria is dying for validation. She feels threatened, like a wounded animal, and the more threatened she feels, the more she fights for relevance.

The Conversation

The wars usually begin right after Lissa-nanda has been at the steering wheel for a while. For example, Lissa-nanda will sit down and write a totally channeled post like this one, and suddenly, lives will change. People will transform.

When the two of them talk, it sounds something like this:

Victoria: Holy shit! I just wrote this killer post that made people quit smoking and check into rehab.

Lissa-nanda: Good for you, baby, but...um...that wasn't you. That was The Universe, writing through me. 

Victoria: But I sat there at the computer! My fingers moved! All that creative writing training I got sure comes in handy. Thank God I’m such an awesome writer and can put out great stuff like this. Look how many people read that post! I ROCK!

Lissa-nanda (sighing, shaking her head): Honey, it's not you. But I'm super grateful for all you've done to help me grow and learn so I can write posts that help people heal. Thank you for what you've done. 

Victoria (started to have a hissy fit, not even acknowledging Lissa-nanda's gratitude): Nuh uh. Mine. MINE! ME ME ME!

Victoria wants to personalize Lissa-nanda's spiritual awakening journey. She wants to claim credit for helping people heal, for transforming lives, for writing good shit, for giving helpful speeches - basically, for every single holy thing that happens. She’s spiritually arrogant - she wants to make herself better-than, other-than, separate-than, those who aren’t even trying to wake up. To be honest, Victoria is a royal pain in the ass.

Lissa-nanda, on the other hand, knows better. She’s patient, kind, and tolerant with Victoria, but her nerves are fraying. She just wants to conk Victoria upside the head with the Truth and knock some sense into her, but she knows Victoria is like a hurting child and the only way to handle her is with love and patience.

Ego, Be Gentle

I’ve determined that 2012 is the year I end the war. I’ve been working with my spiritual counselor Tricia Barrett, who has been holding my hand while lovingly helping me navigate the relationship between my ego and my Inner Pilot Light. She’s helping me learn to wake up without making it personal, to end the separation story I have played out time and time again in my life, to stop the suffering I bring upon myself, to keep the helpful, confident, self-accepting, cheerleading parts of Victoria, while making sure she knows her place when it’s time for Lissa-nanda to step out and do her work in the world.

Wish us luck. As Tricia said, “Waking up is not for the faint of heart.”

Do You Struggle With Your Own Victoria?

Every healer and visionary has an ego and we'll never fully release this part of ourselves. But to fully support those we aim to heal, we need to be willing to see our blind spots, face off with our ego, and learn to make peace. To listen to a free telejam for healers that I did with my spiritual counselor Tricia Barrett regarding this issue, click here.

What about you? Do you struggle with this? Feel free to teach me what you’ve learned. Share your wisdom with me as I navigate this journey. Be my spiritual counselor. What can I do to be more Dalai Lama, less…well… almost everyone at the Grammy’s?

I’m finally ready. I’ll do whatever it takes.

Battling it out,

Lissa

Lissa Rankin, MD: Founder of OwningPink.comPink Medicine Revolutionarymotivational speaker, and author of What’s Up Down There? Questions You’d Only Ask Your Gynecologist If She Was Your Best Friend and Encaustic Art: The Complete Guide To Creating Fine Art With Wax.

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Comments

kitrona's picture

I so needed this

I've been following links since I turned on the computer tonight and clicked on an Inner Pilot Light email. I had a huge and immensely painful encounter tonight regarding the past few months (if not longer), and I so needed to read this. It's a place to start, which is what I desperately was looking for, or at least part of it.

Anonymous's picture

The best work on the ego there is

Do Craig Hamilton's work in Evolutionary Spirituality. There is no better understanding of the ego to be had, and no more clear and rigorous body of work or path to consistently aligning with a bigger part of yourself than the ego, and living for something bigger than yourself.

http://integralenlightenment.com/online-courses/cosmos/

http://integralenlightenment.com/digital-course/

Lissa Rankin's picture

Dear Anonymous

I love what you wrote. Yes, life does happen in semesters, eh? And I suppose the best we can do is accept wherever we are, open our eyes to where we're going, and enjoy the ride...

Thank you for sharing your beautiful journey.
Much love
Lissa

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Anonymous's picture

My Ego is a Wonderful Animal

Enjoyed your article and it seems to be common ground to most of your readers. I felt it was Victoria writing it; Nanna just sat back and smiled. Here is a twist on the duality. At my birth I was given a double first name, a name that suggested a little busy tomboy who loved to get into trouble.

As I grew further into my teenage years and moved to a large city, I no longer felt I was that child. I introduced my self as the second half of my name which was shorter and more exact! As I grew and learned and studied and wrote and taught, I was known only by my second name which was ME at this time of my life. I lived my second name for quite a long time and ocassionally when I hear my full name from elderly people of my youth,I smile and remember and love that child. Now as I grow into the third semester of my life, I feel I am more my first name. It seems to carry knowledge, experience, solidity, comfort, wisdom, confidence. I am all these names but certain parts are more in tune with where and what I am doing.

Although this may seem confusing, to me it feels like three in one, each one fulfilling that portion of their existence as needed.

Everything comes together as you age and you find yourself smiling at the dance you have been doing and there is peace and wisdom and love of the entire being. Age blends all in love for self and others if you just accept who and what you are and love all those around you. Perhaps is it just a case of timing.

Sugar Jones's picture

Ego

I recently wrote about my inner Hippie Chick and Jetsetter battling it out in my head. It was on the heels of a very successful event and I was just floating on how well it had turned out after all my hard work. After a few well deserved days of rest, I was back on the ground and getting my focus back. The event was a blast, but really, a distraction from what I really needed to be doing. My Jetsetter loves the parties and the dresses and the attention, but my Hippie Chick has some work to do. I'm trying to put the best of the two girls together right now. Good to know I'm not alone with this struggle. :)

Lissa Rankin's picture

Wow, thank you all...

Especially you, Heather. What you wrote really resonated with me. To simply see when Victoria is appearing, to gently notice, and in noticing, all her to dissolve under the light of the illumination. No battle or right/wrong judgments necessary.

Thank you for that...
Maybe I need to reread The New Earth...

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Heather's picture

instead of "winning", Seeing.

Dearest, your transparency makes me smile and warms my heart.

I have just lived through the absolute wildest epic story that involved layers of the deepest love and truest intentions, alongside layers of ego that were at work without my awareness.

The result has been semi-disastrous - multiple people's lives totally altered, hearts broken, companies and careers broken, and my own life left in "ruins".

As I slowly heal and pick up the pieces it has been easy to see it all from a state of shock: but I only felt love for everyone involved! I was trying to serve! I was trying to care for each person's growth, healing, and life! I was pure! My heart was pure!

All true. However, the layer that ran alongside that love was ego - defined as Eckhart Tolle defines it in A New Earth.

I love what Eckhart says: that if I get frustrated with my ego it is only more ego (more identity and attachment). He says instead to See it - observing it - and to let the light of that awareness dissolve it - no battle necessary.

My inner eyes have been opened to all of that attachment and identity.

And in my current situation, the miracle is this: that inside destruction caused by my ego, wild healing is occurring - healing that may not have occurred without my ego's involvement.

I'm talking generations-back, crazy healing. It has been shocking that my pure heart and my ego ran side by side for a time, and the end result is something I never could have expected: GRACE.

So no matter what, I am living the truth that God is creating - and God may use Lissa-nanda AND Victoria for a time. But regardless, Life is growing, and you can trust. You are Seeing. That just may be enough. :)

In awe and humility,
Heather

Cindy Lyle's picture

How about Diva-Nanda?!

I am a singer and this is a very fine line to walk when I get up to belt something out in public....got to let the ego have its' strength and power, but can't let it rule or the gift I've been given to share will turn into the "me, me, all about me" show and ruin the presentation of the gift. It's a tricky business, but I too am trying to just channel the gift I've been blessed with and get the #)$*# out of the way!! (semi-quote of your phrase Lissa ;~)

Blessings to us all who're working this piece out!

Marie Yvette's picture

Duality Brought Together !

THANK YOU for sharing this battle with me! I completely know how you feel! As someone in recovery, it is a constant battle to keep "Evie" at bay and allow "Yvette" to gradually shine through. At the moment, I am trying to merge the two into one being: "Marie Yvette" - who will someday conquer the world satisfying both personas !!! :D

Hadley Gustin's picture

Right Up My Alley

Lissa,

Your post here totally spoke to me. This year alone, I have had such a battle raging inside of me between my ego and my spirit. Like you, every time I create something divine, my ego wants credit for it but is still never satisfied no matter the accomplishment. The more I throw myself into working without balance, the more my ego surfaces, and I realize that to regain feelings of peace, calm and serenity, I need to embrace a little more spiritual practice, a little more pleasure. Yoga is a go-to favorite of mine. When I practice yoga, I commune with the best and highest part of myself, and in meditation, I am able to release my separate entity and connect with the universe. Judging from your post, it sounds like you do the same. I also am a huge fan of taking nature walks as often as I can. I am so fortunate to live right by the Chicago Botanic Gardens, so I take full advantage of that. When I'm out walking around, my spirit sings, and my body releases all of the pent up energy that has been stagnant. Some other suggestions of mine are reading good books, hanging out with friends, being near and drinking lots of water (keeps you centered in the flow of life), making sure to do at least 1 pleasuring activity a day for yourself, the list goes on... Of course, I am a work in progress, too, so I have to remind myself to follow through on a lot of these suggestions; but like you said, it is a balancing act. I so admire the commitment you made to yourself about "ending the battle" this year and look forward to future posts and updates about it. I am rooting and cheering for you, girl! Lots of love and light! XOXO

Hadley

A Friend's picture

I Will Be Praying For You!

My prayer daily is also that I might be used. Guess that is why a Holy Spirit-filled Christian would end up reading your post yesterday. My heart aches for you that you would know the Truth. You are soooo close and yet, seemingly, so far.

There is Good and bad in this world. All creation declares it, does it not? And yet the Gospel.... the Good News is that God is real....is personal...is not some "force"... has revealed Himself to us in the person of Jesus Christ who loved us so much that He died to set us free from our sins. Unfortunately, you will continue your struggle until you let Him... through the power of the Spirit... remove this flesh. Sorry to say it cannot be nurtured, it must be destroyed.

My humble recommendation is that you, rather than seeking spiritual help from those who are lost, seek out a Spirit-filled Pastor who can help you understand the Bible. (BTW... you will know them (real men/women of God) by their Love....)

The thing is that religion... including New Age and all the other man made stuff out there... attempts to connect to a higher source/power/God/whatever... and yet the Bible reveals how to do this. It is like going to someone's house. If you want to come to my house you must listen to me and get the directions. Same thing. Jesus said, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me." John 14:6

You are indeed a vessel... meant to be filled by God. If you are not filled with Truth, you are filled with a lie and the end will be death.

May God richly bless you. May He open your eyes to Truth,

A physician in Texas.

Michelle Medina's picture

A Friend: May I point out

A Friend:
May I point out that we do not all live or think as you do. This includes me. I believe in Mother and Father God, as well as Spirit and the Universe. I also believe that the ego is just that, the ego. Nothing more and nothing less.
We are all allowed to think and believe whatever we choose.
We seek out our own truths, take our own paths and are even allowed to seek out our own guides, recommendations and suggestions as we wish.
May I point out something called FREE WILL here.
Thank you.

A Friend's picture

We Agree

We have common ground in our belief of free will. I just happen to believe God is the one who gave it to us. God is Love and we all know that love does not force itself.... that is called rape. Thus, in His love for us He gave us a free will.... so that He could love us in response to our choosing.

When you exercised your choice to respond to my post you could have chosen to be encouraging/gracious/accepting/loving, etc.....but you did not chose that did you? If you say you will act a certain way and then act in the opposite way, what is up with that? (after all that was the original blog post question I was responding to) We as Christians say that sin is your master (what moves you) in these situations. You do have a free will and were made for freedom (that is why one tends to get defensive when someone tries to take this away from them.) My point is that I have become convinced that freedom can only be found in Jesus.

I am confident that I was led to write this post, although maybe not for you, but for someone. God will bless the seed that was planted and it will spring up to eternal life.

The word so often associated with Christianity by non-Christians is repent. They think of a mean-spirited pastor pounding his bible. Actually the word repent just means to think again. If this causes someone to think again, it was worth my time.

I have no intention of debating ad nauseum. I have done what I was called to do.

I am, however, here to love and serve. If there is anything I can pray with you about let me know!

God Bless you!!

Lissa Rankin's picture

What lovely, insightful and helpful comments!

After finishing the rewrites on my book last night, I took the day off to go to Sonoma Mission Inn spa and have been offline today-and to come back home to this is making my night!

Lissa-nanda and Victoria both thank you all.
So much love
Lissa

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Lucie D'Alessandro's picture

Funnily enough, my struggle

Funnily enough, my struggle comes from thinking that my voice is needed, won't be heard... oh, wait, that is my ego, I guess!? Coming up in a round about way. That's what I need to work on.

I love that you're going to unite the best of your girls, without making it personal; without inviting suffering in. A great reminder for me to approach myself this way, too.

Lucie D'Alessandro's picture

Oops, that should say 'my

Oops, that should say 'my voice ISN'T needed'.

Sofia's picture

Thank You

This was so Healing! I thank you so much for your transparency.

Monica's picture

Dualities

Lisa, I feel that part of our human nature brings us dualities. We are human, we live around feminine and masculine forces, water and fire, body and soul, and both of them complement each other. Both of them form part of The One. You cannot nurture your Divinity without accepting your Ego, it is there for a reason. Without the Ego, we wouldn't a acknowledge our Inner Force, our Unity and we would not realize how powerful our moments of Universal Connection are.
Consciousness is a minute by minute, second by second job...Consciousness brings is back to our Nanda-Selfs, consciousness makes it poissible to separate our connection from our disconnection, but by knowing our Ego we are able to know our Light...

Much Love,
Monica

Sprite's picture

Embrcing our Inner and Outer Diva's

I loved the article, and like all the other posters before me, have felt this same battle - mostly over the past few years as I stepped up and did more Leadership oriented roles.

Now I am going back into my shell for a few months and will be working on what needs to come about next. Thank You so much for being with me, giving voice to my Inner Flame and helping me thru the dark nights.

Blessed Be

Sprite

Allison Carr's picture

I struggle with this too!

I have absolutely struggled with this in my own healing work and professional practice. I have a teacher who deals with this in a very graceful way buy just embracing her 'Victoria' with no apologies. "Oh that's my inner drama queen, isn't she great? She loves attention."
You said it best in your statement:

"Lissa-nanda knows that Victoria needs to be tamed, and she knows the only way to tame her is to love her."

We can't change parts of ourselves by willing them away, or trying to cut them out, or even tame them. We have to embrace them, love them, take them completely in. I wonder if Victoria would behave a lot better if she was welcomed with grace and humor and given a seat of honor at the table?

Antonia's picture

Yes yes yes!

This puts words to a feeling and way of living that I'm feeling in my own life but have had a hard time articulating until I read this post. With love, Antonia

Lisa Marie's picture

So Fun :)

Lissa,
Just love your writing. This was such a fun read. It made me smile. I love the idea of naming your ego. It reminds me to see the good in both my ego and true self...ooh, yes, divine :)

Sue's picture

Excellent post! The best

Excellent post! The best thing I can think of to unite my dual egos is spending time in nature. Doing activities that I enjoy that engage my mind and body are best...hiking, rock climbing, biking and skiing. When the body is challenged the mind seems to be alert and present without trying to run the entire show. Thanks for sharing your post, I can feel how important it is for us all to embrace the multiple sides and faces of the goddess we are. Much Love, Sue

Ken Jaques's picture

WOW!

Or should I say WWWwwwwooooowwww!!! Loved this post. This was exactly what I needed. Not sure if you would have seen it, but I found it very ironic that my latest post last Friday was also about Ego (Ego vs Self). We actually talked about this a lot in our Mastermind Group last night. We've created a "safe space" where we highly encourage the use of the words "I" and "me" for our meeting, before we pack them away for another month. We check in at the start of each meeting with an "accomplishments list", something to give ourselves a chance to recognize ourselves for a job well done, away from worrying about how we sound to others.

I know I wrote my personal post for myself, but I also got some interesting feedback. I thought I'd share some info my buddy sent me. I committed myself to reading this daily for a week, think I should do the same with yours. See below.

Thanks so much for writing such beautiful words.
Huge hugs, and much love,
Ken

P.S. My ego wanted to respond to your question about influential spiritual bloggers with "pick me, pick me", but I told him to take a seat ... Until now. Oops, sneaky bastard ;-)

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From reader:
In some reading I was doing I came across this and thought of you and your recent blog posting. This may provide some insight into your Ego vs Self.

:::::::::::::::::::::

Once you realize and accept that all structures (forms) are unstable, even the seemingly solid material ones, peace arises in you. This is because the recognition of the impermanence of all forms awakens you to the dimension of the formless within yourself, that which is beyond death. Jesus called it “eternal life”.

And so the 3 predominant states of egoic relationships are: wanting, thwarted wanting (anger, resentment, blaming, complaining), and indifference.

Why does the ego play roles? - because of one unexamined assumption, one fundamental error, one unconscious thought.
That thought is - I am not enough.

But you cannot be more than you are because underneath your physical and psychological form, you are one with Life itself, one with Being.
In form you will always be inferior to some, superior to others.
In essence, you are neither inferior nor superior to anyone.
True self esteem and true humility arise out of that realization.
In the eyes of the ego, self esteem and humility are contradictory.
In truth, they are one and the same.

In Shakespeares's words :
“There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so”

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I like where this takes my "ego", hope you get something from it ,,,

Jackie McD's picture

Ego Wars

Thanks Lissa, for such an insightful article. Makes me wonder how you got into my head. I am very familiar with this type of ego war. I have difficulty acknowledging what I know are good deeds and helpful loving conversations with those in need or crisis when I get positive feedback and thanks. How do you draw the line between taking credit where credit is due without my Victoria taking over. I find myself listening to my nanda questioning Victoria's motives just to make sure. It is so easy to convince yourself you are not enough, even when you know you are. It also easy to convince yourself you're all that and a bag of chips. Where is the balance.

Vanessa Brown's picture

tug of war

I have this tug of war everyday! I am a new Doula. My ego, Veronica, wants to be the 'go to Doula' with 100s of births attended and amazing training/course credentials.Vannanda just wants to love and be loved.

Rosa's picture

Thank you

Thank you for letting me know that i am not the only one having the battle..and that i am not crazy..Thank you for revealing that it is hard, that it is supposed to be hard...and that is why you get such richness from it. Thank you for identifying some tools with which to have the battle in a gentle yet effective way, since, both parts are part of you....and thank you for makimaking it ok (or actually more than ok) since it shows movement to healing...however small the steps).

Anonymous's picture

Just Awesome!

This post was so incredible! I have also named my Ego, though it was after someone who treated me horribly when I was a child. It makes it easier to tell her to knock it off when I'm treating myself horribly. :)

lori's picture

Great post Lissa! Loved the

Great post Lissa! Loved the descriptions of your alter-egos and can certainly identify with both. But, are you sure that Victoria needs to be tamed? Perhaps the attention-seeking self is something to be embraced (though the nastiness to the waiters she could temper a bit :))So many women stifle that ultra expressed side of themselves and, when they don't, and they live it full out, they wind up filled with regret and guilt for having been so "egotistical".

I love Victoria's passion and her fearlessness and often wish I had less -ananda and more Victoria. And that, when I, every now and then, am Victoria-like that I wouldn't beat myself up about it. What if you (and the rest of us) could fully embrace that diva/love the spotlight part of your personality? It will always be informed by the Lissa-nanda side and ultimately can't possibly be that arrogant or pain in the ass-ish based on who you are and what you are up to in the world!

Michelle Medina's picture

OMG!!! I'm there Lissa!! I've

OMG!!! I'm there Lissa!! I've been trying to chop myself into parts and it wasn't working! Now I read this and think of all the times my ego has gotten in the way. One of my current issues is figuring out exactly when ego is in the way and when she's not.
I know for me as S wrote above, without an ego there are times I won't validate/appreciate/acknowledge myself. When I graduated high school for example. Everyone else says what an accomplishment and I'm still thinking: "I didn't rescue anyone from a burning building or whatever, so graduating is no accomplishment!" So I'd say for me that's where she comes in handy.

Carla's picture

You really captured the tango

You really captured the tango dance of ego and universal spirit. I feel similarly and to see it analyzed so clearly in your writing makes the conflicting impulses I feel more easy to deal with. I can see them coming and see them in action. I now have a clue as to who is acting out inside me at the moment, the ego or the universal spirit. Perhaps I will be able to let them be and not try to force them to be what they cannot. Thank you for your deep thinking Lissa!

Lissa Rankin's picture

So true Sarah

Yes, that's part of the dance, letting Victoria and Lissa-nanda figure it out so both can coexist and do their part. And yes, celebration is definitely in order. I finished my book at 1am today and pressed SEND to my editor. Champagne for Victoria, indeed!

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Durga's picture

sweet EGO

What a wonderful article, -nanda forever. I like to think the ego is a present from God to make choices. Its tasteless like water , Its a sensor, a navigator. Ad it helps that some people do not steal the butter rom your bread....Congrats to your new book.. it has already a greta energy .. i can feel it radiating here.. Love and Champagne... Pink for all.

Sarah's picture

Holy cow Lissa this spoke to

Holy cow Lissa this spoke to me, I think it's true for most people 'on the path'. I think it can help to utilise Victoria to give you courage and visibility in the outer world. And I don't think 'diva' should be something that the ego gets to have whole claim over - that firey thrusting energy that maybe feels more egoic can also be part of the divine channel. I do a dance style (called waacking, you can youtube it) which is very diva-ish, fierce, and fabulous, but when i'm doing it I feel very connected spiritually - a pure expression of me.
I get it though, it's about intention - are you showing up to speak to let guidance flow through you or for you, personally, to have a validating audience. Well, Maybe during these activities (the lectures, tv spots, books etc) let your yogic divinity flow to heal. Then when you step off that stage, or see the book on the shelf, let your Victoria diva have her fist pump and champagne. Maybe Victoria is proud of Lissa-nanda and wants cake for you. Sometimes when we get a little too 'i am only a vessel' we can deprive ourselves of acknowledging a job well done. Or is that just me ?!
Great article xo

Shirley Zago's picture

Article

Such a good article. We do need the balance and the contrast of both. I am amazed at some of the things I write, why, because we never thought we had it in us. We are all beginning to live our authentic selves and sometimes it scares us. Who are we to be so powerful and in reality, who are we not to be powerful when we are coming from a place of compassion.

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