Ego Quotes

We have collected and put the best Ego Quotes. Enjoy reading these insights and feel free to share this page on your social media to inspire others.

May these Ego Quotes on many subjects inspire you to never give up and keep working towards your goals. Who knows—success could be just around the corner.

Ego is a Latin word meaning I, which derives from the Greek word Εγώ (Ego) meaning I, often used in English to indicate the self, identity or other related concepts. Definitions and relations of such an entity to the world in various psychological models of religious, spiritual, scientific and medical traditions can vary significantly. It is one of three aspects of the human psyche, along with the id and super-ego in the psychological models of Sigmund Freud.

Ego Quotes

Ego Quotes

The ultimate aim of the ego is not to see something, but to be something. – Muhammad Iqbal

Don’t let your ego get too close to your position, so that if your position gets shot down, your ego doesn’t go with it. – Colin Powell

Ego is one of the biggest weapons that is used to take us down. It’s self-destructive. It’s a problem on all levels – even regular people can have big ego problems. – Yehuda Berg

The ego is nothing other than the focus of conscious attention. – Alan Watts

Ego is the immediate dictate of human consciousness. – Max Planck

Ego is a social fiction for which one person at a time gets all the blame. – Robert Anton Wilson

To me the ego is the habitual and compulsive thought processes that go through everybody’s mind continuously. External things like possessions or memories or failures or successes or achievements. Your personal history. – Eckhart Tolle

Ego is the great enemy. Ego will hold you back every single time. – Nikki Sixx

When you’re older and wiser a lot of the ego has gone out of the window. – Billy Ocean

The ego is as little absolutely permanent as are bodies. – Ernst Mach

People who think they know everything are a great annoyance to those of us who do. – Isaac Asimov

The greatest conflicts are not between two people but between one person and himself. – Garth Brooks

Every man who is high up likes to think that he has done it all himself, and the wife smiles and lets it go at that. – J. M. Barrie

Ego judges and punishes. Love forgives and heals. – Anonymous

If someone corrects you and you feel offended, then you have an ego problem. – Nouman Ali Khan

Is that you or your ego? – Anonymous

If someone corrects you, and you feel offended, then you have an ego problem. – Nouman Ali Khan

The weak are dominated by their ego, the wise dominate their ego, and the intelligent are in a constant struggle against their ego. – Hamza Yusuf

You have no choice. You must leave your ego on the doorstep before you enter love. – Kamand Kojouri

The first product of self-knowledge is humility,” Flannery O’Connor once said. This is how we fight the ego, by really knowing ourselves. – Ryan Holiday

The ego is the false self-born out of fear and defensiveness. – John O’Donohue

Avoid having your ego so close to your position that when your position falls, your ego goes with it. – Colin Powell

I don’t know about your true form, but the weight of your ego sure is pushing the crust of the earth toward the breaking point. – Jim Butcher

Being efficient is the easy part. Suppressing one’s ego completely for hours at a time is really hard. – Colin Clark

Being a control freak is a weakness, not a strength. If you can’t allow others to shine, you’re exhibiting signs of narcissism and showing a lack of self-confidence. It is isolation through ego. – Stewart Stafford

The more you can have control over your ego rather than let it run amuck, the more successful you’ll be in all areas of life. – Roy T. Bennett

The minute you start compromising for the sake of massaging somebody’s ego, that’s it, game over. – Gordon Ramsay

Part of me suspects that I’m a loser, and the other part of me thinks I’m God Almighty. – John Lennon

Food for the ego is poison for the soul. – Donna Goddard

The ego relies on the familiar. It is reluctant to experience the unknown, which is the very essence of life. – Deepak Chopra

She is pretending like she doesn’t miss you, you’re pretending you don’t give a damn, ego is a hell of a drug. – Nitya Prakash

Chasing a person doesn’t give you value or build values in you. You earn your value by chasing morality and practicing dignity. – Shannon L. Alder

A man’s spirit is his self. That entity which is his consciousness. To think, to feel, to judge, to act are functions of the ego. – Ayn Rand

Enlightenment is ego’s ultimate disappointment. – Chögyam Trungpa

Ego Quotes

Ego Quotes

Bullying happens because weak people need to prop up their ego by beating up or humiliating others. – Bruce Dickinson

How to get rid of ego as a dictator and turn it into messenger and servant and scout, to be in your service, is the trick. – Joseph Campbell

A conscious human is driven by their conscience, not popular opinion. – Suzy Kassem

But us women, well, we like our egos stroked every once in a while and a boy mourning over us is a huge boost. – J. L. Paul

I am sufficiently proud of my knowing something to be modest about my not knowing all. – Vladimir Nabokov

When I pass, speak freely of my shortcomings and my flaws. Learn from them, for I’ll have no ego to injure. – Aaron McGruder

Never take advice about never taking advice. That is an old vice of men – to dish it out without being able to take it – the blind leading the blind into more blindness. – Criss Jami

The Ego is a veil between humans and God. In prayer all are equal. – Rumi

Besides, nothing makes one so vain as being told that one is a sinner. Conscience makes egotists of us all. – Oscar Wilde

The Divine Light is always in man, presenting itself to the senses and to the comprehension, but man rejects it. – Giordano Bruno

If you’re jealous of someone else it simply means you have not come to a true acceptance and appreciation of yourself. – Rasheed Ogunlaru

Why do you give way to your ego and pride. Where does it stand in the ocean of time. – Naveen Rajeev

The Spirit is as much a jealous lover as the ego. Both guard their path with an uncompromising passion but for very different reasons. – Donna Goddard

Never allow your ego to diminish your ability to listen. – Gary Hopkins

You bruised my ego, you see, and there’s just not enough money in the world to soothe my ego when it gets bruised. – Jennifer Estep

An exceedingly confident student would, in theory, make a terrible student. Why would he take school seriously when he feels that he can outwit his teachers? – Criss Jami

Your ego is your soul’s worst enemy. – Rusty Eric

The ego is the biggest enemy of humans. – Anonymous

When misunderstandings grow cut your ego. – Anonymous

Do things that feed your soul, not your ego and you will be happy. – Anonymous

Ego, let it go. – Anonymous

Too much ego will kill your talent. – Anonymous

The ego is the single biggest obstruction to the achievement of anything. – Richard Rose

Leave your ego at the door. – Anonymous

More the knowledge, lesser the ego. Lesser the knowledge, more the ego. – Albert Einstein

Complaining is one of the ego’s favorite strategies for strengthening itself. – Eckhart Tolle

No matter what we talk about, we are talking about ourselves. – Hugh Prather

The most beautiful women I have known had one thing in common apart from beauty: humility. It’s a shame that those with less to boast about doing it the most. – Donna Lynn Hope

Midlife is the time to let go of an overdominant ego and to contemplate the deeper significance of human existence. – Carl Gustav Jung

The worst disease which can afflict executives in their work is not, as popularly supposed, alcoholism; it’s egotism. – Robert Frost

Whenever ego suffers from fear of death & your practice turns to seeing impermanence, ego settles down. – Tsoknyi Rinpoche

The ego is like a clever monkey, which can co-opt anything, even the most spiritual practices, so as to expand itself. – Jean-Yves Leloup

Great people have great egos; maybe that’s what makes them great. – Paul Arden

Ego Quotes

Ego Quotes

The greatest win is walking away and choosing not to engage in drama and toxic energy at all. – Lalah Delia

Some little pieces of sand are so full of ego that they see themselves as a giant rock! But then the wind blows, the big ego flies in the air! – Mehmet Murat ildan

Marriage is the union of two ‘I’s to form a ‘V’. Both ‘I’s have to tilt equally to make a good ‘V’. ‘I’s standing tall can never make a ‘V’. – Ashok Kallarakkal

You never really learn much from hearing yourself speak. – George Clooney

Forget the self and you will fear nothing, in whatever level of awareness you find yourself to be. – Carlos Castaneda

The ego hurts you like this: you become obsessed with the one person who does not love you. blind to the rest who do. – Warsan Shire

Don’t allow the pride, ego, and insecurities of others stunt your growth. – Yvonne Pierre

Being aware is being aware of one’s own mind and the games it plays on itself. – Robin Macnaughton

The fool who thinks he’s god will rather quickly discover that he is not, which simply means that the person who was fooled by the fool is none other than the fool himself. – Craig D. Lounsbrough

Not everybody has that non-self-humility, not everybody has that existence-self-ego. – Saroj Aryal

Big egos are big shields for lots of empty space. – Diana Black

Less ego, more excellence. Less talk, more do. Less rude, more polite. Less fear, more wins. – Anonymous

Whenever I climb I am followed by a dog called ego. – Friedrich Nietzsche

Love is happy when it is able to give something. The ego is happy when it is able to take something. – Osho

Ego is to the true self what a flashlight is to a spotlight. – John Bradshaw

The ego says: I’m still angry about yesterday, the spirit says: new day, new attitude. – Anonymous

Confidence without ego. – Anonymous

Ego Quotes

Ego Quotes

Never let anyone’s ego kill your vibe. Stay positive and don’t feed negative energy. – Anonymous

Conquer and tame the ego. – Angelica Hopes

You can either be a host to God or a hostage to your ego. It’s your call. – Wayne Dyer

Spiritual transcendence is transforming the rigid ego attachments into acceptance of self and others. – Lynne Namka

Ego is just like dust in the eyes. Without clearing the dust, we can’t see anything clearly, so clear the ego and see the world. – Anonymous

Ego interrupts intuition. – Danielle LaPorte

The ego is not master in its own house. – Sigmund Freud

The ego is always looking to find something – the spirit can see what’s already there. – Marianne Willamson

Big egos have little ears. – Robert Schuller

Think big from the heart, not the ego. – Anonymous

The ego, however, is not who you really are. The ego is your self-image, it is your social mask, it is the role you are playing. Your social mask thrives on approval. It wants control, and it is sustained by power because it lives in fear. – Ram Dass

The moment you become aware of the ego in you, it is strictly no longer the ego but just an old, conditioned mind patter. Ego implies unawareness. Awareness and ego cannot coexist. – Eckhart Tolle

Soul over ego. – Anonymous

As you dissolve into love, your ego fades. You’re not thinking about loving; you’re just being love, radiating like the sun. – Ram Dass

When the ego dies, the soul awakes. – Mahatma Gandhi

Our own self-love draws a thick veil between us and our faults. – Lord Chesterfield

Letting go of your ego opens the door to taking a new and creative course of action. – Suzanne Mayo Frindt

The nice thing about egotists is that they don’t talk about other people. – Lucille S. Harper

It’s hard to be humble when you are as great as I am. – Muhammad Ali

The last time I saw him he was walking down lover’s lane holding his own hand. – Fred Allen

Well-ordered self-love is right and natural. – St. Thomas Aquinas

Ego expands to fill the space not filled with knowledge. – Jeffrey Armstrong

When ego is lost, limit is lost. You become infinite, kind, beautiful. – Yogi Bhajan

It is hard to resist a flatterer who gets it right. – Robert Brault

You are the sky. Everything else – it’s just the weather. – Pema Chodron

The Ego is an exquisite instrument. Enjoy it, use it-just don’t get lost in it. – Ram Dass

Self-worth comes from one thing – thinking that you are worthy. – Dr. Wayne Dyer

I’m willing to admit that I may not always be right, but I am never wrong. – Samuel Goldwyn

I live for myself and I answer to nobody. – Steve Mcqueen

Self-love seems so often unrequited. – Anthony Powell

Ego Quotes

Ego Quotes

Quotes from Wikiquote

  • Every autobiography is concerned with two characters, a Don Quixote, the Ego, and a Sancho Panza, the Self.
    • W. H. Auden, The Dyer’s Hand (1962), pt. 3, Hic et Ille, sect. b
  • The original drive for self”-preservation is no more accompanied by any I-consciousness than any other drive. What wants to propagate itself is not the I but the body that does not yet know of any I.
    • Martin Buber, I and Thou, W. Kaufmann, trans. (1970), p. 73
  • I took some bad acid in November of 1965, and the after effect left me crazy and helpless for six months. My mind would drift into a place that was very electrical and crackly, filled with harsh, abrasive, low grade, cartoony, tawdry carnival visions. There was a nightmarish mechanical aspect to everyday life. My ego was so shattered, so fragmented that it didn’t get in the way during what was the most unself-conscious period of my life. I was kind of on automatic pilot and was still constantly drawing. Most of my popular characters — Mr. Natural, Flaky Foont, Angelfood McSpade, Eggs Ackley, The Snoid, The Vulture Demonesses, Av’ n’ Gar, Shuman the Human, the Truckin’ guys, Devil Girl—all suddenly appeared in the drawings in my sketchbook in this period, early 1966. Amazing! I was relieved when it was finally over, but I also immediately missed the egoless state of that strange interlude.
    • Robert Crumb, in his sketchbook (28 March 1998), reproduced in The R. Crumb Handbook (2005) by Robert Crumb and Peter Poplaski, p. 372p. 132
  • To be fully alive is a stupendous struggle! We want the rewards without the struggle — a fatal error! … No such thing as an easy life! Everybody has a hard time … struggle or die! To find out what’s really going on it’s necessary to get around the ego … an art requiring persistent and determined effort … Me, me, me… myself & I … oh no!!! Trapped in my stupid self!
    • Robert Crumb, in his sketchbook (28 March 1998), reproduced in The R. Crumb Handbook (2005) by Robert Crumb and Peter Poplaski, p. 372
  • Q: How do you define ego? A: Ego is life. To keep the body’s existence is ego. It is the part of the mind which identifies a creature with the world. Ego self tells you , This is my body,” and also tells you, This is my Self. – It connects the two.
    • Baba Hari Dass, Silence Speaks, 1977, p.15; Sri Rama Publishing, Santa Cruz, CA; 1st ed.
  • Just like pure water poured in a dirty cup becomes dirty, similarly the pure ego rooted in the impure mind becomes impure ego.
    • Baba Hari Dass, The Path to Enlightement is not a Highway, 1996, Sri Rama Publishing, Santa Cruz, CA; Ego, p.49
  • The ego has no form and no particular center of existance. It pervades the mind, intellect, senses, and the body as ‘I am’.
    • Baba Hari Dass, The Path to Enlightement.., p.65
  • Q: How do I know about the ego: can it be our friend? A: More thn a friend, it is our life. Ego works through mind, intellect, and senses. Its field of activity is desires and attachements (instruments)… but one who wants to get libereated from the cycle of birth and deatch, then the ego should be separated from its instruments.
    • Baba Hari Dass, Mount Madonna Messanger, Watsoville, CA, June 24, 2016.
  • Q: Is it possible for us to identify wth the Self rather than the ego? A: Without knowing the ego, we can’t even touch the Self.
    • Baba Hari Dass, Mount Madonna Messanger, Watsoville, CA, August 5, 2016.
  • The ego is not master in its own house.
    • Sigmund Freud, in A Difficulty in the Path of Psycho-Analysis (1917)
  • It is easy to see that the ego is that part of the id which has been modified by the direct influence of the external world.
    • Sigmund Freud, in The Ego and the Id (1923)
  • The ego represents what we call reason and sanity, in contrast to the id which contains the passions.
    • Sigmund Freud, in The Ego and the Id (1923)
  • Towards the outside, at any rate, the ego seems to maintain clear and sharp lines of demarcation. There is only one state — admittedly an unusual state, but not one that can be stigmatized as pathological — in which it does not do this. At the height of being in love the boundary between ego and object threatens to melt away. Against all the evidence of his senses, a man who is in love declares that I and you are one, and is prepared to behave as if it were a fact.
    • Sigmund Freud, in Civilization and Its Discontents (1929), Ch. 1, as translated by Joan Riviere (1961)
  • One might compare the relation of the ego to the id with that between a rider and his horse. The horse provides the locomotor energy, and the rider has the prerogative of determining the goal and of guiding the movements of his powerful mount towards it. But all too often in the relations between the ego and the id we find a picture of the less ideal situation in which the rider is obliged to guide his horse in the direction in which it itself wants to go.
    • Sigmund Freud, in New Introductory Lectures on Psychoanalysis (1932), Lecture 31 : The Anatomy of the Mental Personality
  • Where id is, there shall ego be.
    • Sigmund Freud, in New Introductory Lectures on Psychoanalysis (1932), Lecture 31 : The Anatomy of the Mental Personality
  • Of greatest significance to me has been the insight that I attained as a fundamental understanding from all of my LSD experiments: what one commonly takes as the reality, including the reality of one’s own individual person, by no means signifies something fixed, but rather something that is ambiguous — that there is not only one, but that there are many realities, each comprising also a different consciousness of the ego.
    One can also arrive at this insight through scientific reflections. The problem of reality is and has been from time immemorial a central concern of philosophy. It is, however, a fundamental distinction, whether one approaches the problem of reality rationally, with the logical methods of philosophy, or if one obtrudes upon this problem emotionally, through an existential experience. The first planned LSD experiment was therefore so deeply moving and alarming, because everyday reality and the ego experiencing it, which I had until then considered to be the only reality, dissolved, and an unfamiliar ego experienced another, unfamiliar reality. The problem concerning the innermost self also appeared, which, itself unmoved, was able to record these external and internal transformations.
    Reality is inconceivable without an experiencing subject, without an ego. It is the product of the exterior world, of the sender and of a receiver, an ego in whose deepest self the emanations of the exterior world, registered by the antennae of the sense organs, become conscious. If one of the two is lacking, no reality happens, no radio music plays, the picture screen remains blank.

    • Dr. Albert Hofmann, in LSD : My Problem Child (1980), Ch. 11 : LSD Experience and Reality
  • Ego and the outer world are separated in the normal condition of consciousness, in everyday reality; one stands face-to-face with the outer world; it has become an object. In the LSD state the boundaries between the experiencing self and the outer world more or less disappear, depending on the depth of the inebriation. Feedback between receiver and sender takes place. A portion of the self overflows into the outer world, into objects, which begin to live, to have another, a deeper meaning. This can be perceived as a blessed, or as a demonic transformation imbued with terror, proceeding to a loss of the trusted ego. In an auspicious case, the new ego feels blissfully united with the objects of the outer world and consequently also with its fellow beings. This experience of deep oneness with the exterior world can even intensify to a feeling of the self being one with the universe. This condition of cosmic consciousness, which under favorable conditions can be evoked by LSD or by another hallucinogen from the group of Mexican sacred drugs, is analogous to spontaneous religious enlightenment, with the unio mystica. In both conditions, which often last only for a timeless moment, a reality is experienced that exposes a gleam of the transcendental reality, in which universe and self, sender and receiver, are one.
    • Dr. Albert Hofmann, in LSD : My Problem Child (1980), Ch. 11 : LSD Experience and Reality
  • The dream is the small hidden door in the deepest and most intimate sanctum of the soul, which opens to that primeval cosmic night that was soul long before there was conscious ego and will be soul far beyond what a conscious ego could ever reach.
    • Carl Jung, in The Meaning of Psychology for Modern Man (1934)

      Ego Quotes

      Ego Quotes

  • The Satanist believes in complete gratification of his ego. Satanism, in fact, is the only religion which advocates the intensification or encouragement of the ego. Only if a person’s own ego is sufficiently fulfilled, can he afford to be kind and complimentary to others, without robbing himself of his self-respect. We generally think of a braggart as a person with a large ego; in reality, his bragging results from a need to satisfy his impoverished ego.
    • Anton LaVey, in The Satanic Bible (1969)
  • ALL religions of a spiritual nature are inventions of man. He has created an entire system of gods with nothing more than his carnal brain. Just because he has an ego, and cannot accept it, he has to externalize it into some great spiritual device which he calls God.
    • Anton LaVey, in The Satanic Bible (1969)
  • Religionists have kept their followers in line by suppressing their egos. By making their followers feel inferior, the awesomeness of their god is insured. Satanism encourages its members to develop a good strong ego because it gives them the self-respect necessary for a vital existence in this life. If a person has been vital throughout his life and has fought to the end for his earthly existence, it is this ego which will refuse to die, even after the expiration of the flesh which housed it.
    • Anton LaVey, in The Satanic Bible (1969)
  • Step by step, let whatever happens happen. Real change will come when it is brought about, not by your ego, but by reality. Awareness releases reality to change you.
    • Anthony de Mello, in Awareness : The Perils and Oppurtunities of Reality (1992), edited by J. Francis Stroud, Assorted Landmines, p. 148
  • To those who seek to protect their ego true Peace brings only disturbance.
    • Anthony de Mello, in One Minute Nonsense (1992), p. 33
  • One always treads with a joyful step when one has dropped the burden called the ego.
    • Anthony de Mello, in One Minute Nonsense (1992), p. 177
  • An unripe ego cannot be thrown, cannot be destroyed. And if you struggle with an unripe ego to destroy and dissolve it, the whole effort is going to be a failure. Rather than destroying it, you will find it more strengthened in new subtle ways. This is something basic to be understood: the ego must come to a peak, it must be strong, it must have attained an integrity — only then can you dissolve it. A weak ego cannot be dissolved.
    • Osho, in My Way : The Way of the White Clouds (1995)
  • Campus speech codes, that folly of the navel-gazing left, have increased the appeal of the right. Ideas must confront ideas. When hurt feelings and bruised egos are more important than the unfettered life of the mind, the universities have committed suicide.
    • Camille Paglia, in No Law in the Arena : A Pagan Theory of Sexuality, in Vamps and Tramps : New Essays (1994), p. 51
  • The only reason why we are always thinking of our own ego is that we have to live with it more continuously than with anyone else’s.
    • Cesare Pavese, in This Business of Living (26 May 1938)
  • Egocentrism in children clearly appears to be a simple continuation of solipsism in infants. Egocentrism, as we have seen, is not an intentional or even a conscious process. A child has no idea that he is egocentric. He believes everybody thinks the way he does, and this false universality is due simply to an absence of the sense of limits on his individuality. In this light, egocentrism and solipsism are quite comparable: both stem from the absence or the weakness of the sense of self.
    • Jean Piaget, in ‘The First Year of Life of the Child (1927), The Egocentrism of the Child and the Solipsism of the Baby, as translated by Howard E. Gruber and J. Jacques Vonèche
  • Every observer has noted that the younger the child, the less sense he has of his own ego. From the intellectual point of view, he does not distinguish between external and internal, subjective and objective. From the point of view of action, he yields to every suggestion, and if he does oppose to other people’s wills — a certain negativism which has been called the spirit of contradiction — this only points to his real defenselessness against his surroundings. A strong personality can maintain itself without the help of this particular weapon.
    • Jean Piaget, in The Moral Judgment of the Child (1932), Ch. 1 : The Rules of the Game, § 8 : Conclusions : Motor Rules and the Two Kinds of Respect
  • Egocentrism in so far as it means confusion of the ego and the external world, and egocentrism in so far as it means lack of cooperation, constitute one and the same phenomenon. So long as the child does not dissociate his ego from the suggestions coming from the physical and from the social world, he cannot cooperate, for in order to cooperate one must be conscious of one’s ego and situate it in relation to thought in general. And in order to become conscious of one’s ego, it is necessary to liberate oneself from the thought and will of others. The coercion exercised by the adult or the older child is therefore inseparable from the unconscious egocentrism of the very young child.
    • Jean Piaget, in The Moral Judgment of the Child (1932), Ch. 2 : Adult Constraint and Moral Realism
  • There is little mysticism without an element of transcendence, and conversely, there is no transcendence without a certain degree of egocentrism. It may be that the genesis of these experiences is to be sought in the unique situation of the very young child in relation to adults. The theory of the filial origin of the religious sense seems to us singularly convincing in this connection.
    • Jean Piaget, in The Moral Judgment of the Child (1932), Ch. 2 : Adult Constraint and Moral Realism
  • As long as the child remains egocentric, truth as such will fail to interest him and he will see no harm in transposing facts in accordance with his desires.
    • Jean Piaget, in The Moral Judgment of the Child (1932), Ch. 2 : Adult Constraint and Moral Realism
  • This māyā, that is to say, the ego, is like a cloud. The sun cannot be seen on account of a thin patch of cloud; when that disappears one sees the sun. If by the grace of the guru one’s ego vanishes, then one sees God.
    • Ramakrishna, as quoted in The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna (1942) as translated by Swami Nikhilananda, p. 169
    • Variant:
    • The sun can give heat and light to the whole world, but he cannot do so when the clouds shut out his rays. Similarly as long as egotism veils the heart, God cannot shine upon it.
      • As quoted in Sayings of Sri Ramakrishna (1960), p. 99
  • The waves belong to the Ganges, not the Ganges to the waves. A man cannot realize God unless he gets rid of all such egotistic ideas as I am such an important man or I am so and so. Level the mound of I to the ground by dissolving it with tears of devotion.
    • Ramakrishna, as quoted in The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna (1942) as translated by Swami Nikhilananda, p. 385
  • As a piece of rope, when burnt, retains its form, but cannot serve to bind, so is the ego which is burnt by the fire of supreme Knowledge.
    • Ramakrishna, as quoted in Sayings of Sri Ramakrishna (1960), p. 132
  • I love you, Dominique. As selfishly as the fact that I exist. As selfishly as my lungs breath air. I breathe for my own necessity, for the fuel of my body, for my survival. I’ve given you not my sacrifice or my pity, but my ego and my naked need. This is the only way you can wish to be loved. This is the only way I can want you to love me.
    • Ayn Rand, in The Fountainhead (1943), Part II, Howard Roark
  • The ability to say ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ is the essence of all ownership. It’s your ownership of your own ego. Your soul, if you wish. Your soul has a single basic function — the act of valuing. ‘Yes’ or ‘No,’ ‘I wish’ or ‘I do not wish.’ You can’t say ‘Yes’ without saying ‘I. There’s no affirmation without the one who affirms. In this sense, everything to which you grant your love is yours.
    • Ayn Rand, in The Fountainhead (1943), Part IV
  • The first right on earth is the right of the ego.
    • Ayn Rand, in The Fountainhead (1943), Part IV
  • You can fake virtue for an audience. You can’t fake it in your own eyes. Your ego is your strictest judge, they run from it. They spend their lives running.
    • Ayn Rand, in The Fountainhead (1943), Part IV
  • As poles of good and evil, he was offered two conceptions: egoism and altruism. Egoism was held to mean the sacrifice of others to self. Altruism — the sacrifice of self to others. This tied man irrevocably to other men and left him nothing but a choice of pain: his own pain borne for the sake of others or pain inflicted upon others for the sake of self. … Man was forced to accept masochism as his ideal — under the threat that sadism was his only alternative.
    • Ayn Rand, in The Fountainhead (1943), Part IV
  • The waking consciousness, dear friends, is not the ego. The ego is only that portion of the waking consciousness that deals with physical manipulation.
    • Jane Roberts, in The Seth Material (1970), p. 211
  • Bourgeois morality tries to maintain an illusion of altruism, whereas in all other areas bourgeois thinking has long since assumed a theoretical as well as an economic egocentrism.
    • Peter Sloterdijk, in Critique of Cynical Reason (1983), as translated by M. Eldred (1987), p. 45
  • Psychologically speaking, enlightenment always meant an advance in the training of mistrust — in the construction of an ego concerned about self-assertion and control of reality. Freud’s methodology can be summarized, in a way, as the attempt to keep the path to the unconscious open without using hypnosis. One may consider whether, in Freud’s procedure, a finesse born of mistrust is not at work.
    • Peter Sloterdijk, in Critique of Cynical Reason (1983), as translated by M. Eldred (1987), p. 47
  • The subject of a radical ego enlightenment cannot be socially identified with certainty — even though the procedures of this enlightenment are anchored in reality.
    In this point, the majority of societies seem to strive for a conscious nonenlightenment.

    • Peter Sloterdijk, in Critique of Cynical Reason (1983), as translated by M. Eldred (1987), p. 60
  • Crosswise to all political fronts, it is the ego” in society that offers the most resolute resistance against the decisive enlightenment. Scarcely anyone will put up with radical self-reflection on this point, not even many of those who regard themselves as enlighteners.
    • Peter Sloterdijk, in Critique of Cynical Reason (1983), as translated by M. Eldred (1987), p. 60
  • As the political ego strives for hardness and agility, it is trained in the way of seeing of generals and diplomats: reconnoiter the terrain; coldly consider the given circumstances; survey the numbers; tack as long as necessary; strike as soon as the time is right. … In this cold romanticism of grand strategic overviews, the political camps of the Left and the Right are quite close to each other. These realpolitik ways of thinking now penetrate down to the person on the street. This sovereign thinking, borrowed stateman’s optics and general’s disposition work on posturingly, even in the minds of the impotent. The principal psychopolitical model of the coming decades is the ‘cothinking’ cog in the machinery.
    • Peter Sloterdijk, in Critique of Cynical Reason (1983), as translated by M. Eldred (1987), p. 470
  • Nowhere does an ego experience it-self in modern scientific knowledge. Where this ego still bends over itself, with its obvious tendency to a worldless inwardness, it leaves reality behind. Thus, for present-day thinking, inwardness and outwardness, subjectivity and things, have been split into alien worlds; at the same time, the classical premise of philosophizing falls away. Know thyself has long since been understood by modern people as an invitation to an ego trip for an escapist ignorance. Modern reflection expressly renounces any competency in embedding subjectivities without rupture into objective worlds. What it uncovers is rather the gulf between both.
    • Peter Sloterdijk, in Critique of Cynical Reason (1983), as translated by M. Eldred (1987), p. 537
  • To have ego means to believe in your own strength. And to also be open to other people’s views. It is to be open, not closed. So, yes, my ego is big, but it’s also very small in some areas. My ego is responsible for my doing what I do — bad or good.
    • Barbra Streisand, in an interview in Playboy (1977), as quoted in No Glass Slipper : Surviving and Conquering Painful Life Experiences (2006), p. 32
  • The prevalent sensation of oneself as a separate ego enclosed in a bag of skin is a hallucination which accords neither with Western science nor with the experimental philosophy-religions of the East — in particular the central and germinal Vedanta philosophy of Hinduism. This hallucination underlies the misuse of technology for the violent subjugation of man’s natural environment and, consequently, its eventual destruction.
    We are therefore in urgent need of a sense of our own existence which is in accord with the physical facts and which overcomes our feeling of alienation from the universe.

    • Alan Watts, in The Book on the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are (1966)
  • We do not come into this world; we come out of it, as leaves from a tree. As the ocean waves, the universe peoples. Every individual is an expression of the whole realm of nature, a unique action of the total universe. This fact is rarely, if ever, experienced by most individuals. Even those who know it to be true in theory do not sense or feel it, but continue to be aware of themselves as isolated egos inside bags of skin.
    • Alan Watts, in The Book on the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are (1966), Inside Information
  • The most strongly enforced of all known taboos is the taboo against knowing who or what you really are behind the mask of your apparently separate, independent, and isolated ego.
    • Alan Watts, in The Book on the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are (1966), Inside Information
  • If you know that I, in the sense of the person, the front, the ego, it really doesn’t exist. Then…it won’t go to your head too badly, if you wake up and discover that you’re God.
    • Alan Watts, in Alan Watts Teaches Meditation (1992)
  • Ego is a social institution with no physical reality. The ego is simply your symbol of yourself. Just as the word water is a noise that symbolizes a certain liquid without being it, so too the idea of ego symbolizes the role you play, who you are, but it is not the same as your living organism.
    • Alan Watts, in Buddhism : The Religion of No-Religion (1999)
  • The Saint is a man who disciplines his ego. The Sage is a man who rids himself of his ego.
    • Wei Wu Wei (Terence James Stannus Gray), in Fingers Pointing Towards The Moon (1958)
  • There seem to two kinds of searchers: those who seek to make their ego something other than it is, i.e. holy, happy, unselfish (as though you could make a fish unfish), and those who understand that all such attempts are just gesticulation and play-acting, that there is only one thing that can be done, which is to disidentify themselves with the ego, by realising its unreality, and by becoming aware of their eternal identity with pure being.
    • Wei Wu Wei, in Fingers Pointing Towards The Moon (1958)
  • At this point in history, the most radical, pervasive, and earth-shaking transformation would occur simply if everybody truly evolved to a mature, rational, and responsible ego, capable of freely participating in the open exchange of mutual self-esteem. There is the edge of history. There would be a real New Age.
    • Ken Wilber, in Up From Eden (1981)
  • The single greatest world transformation would simply be the embrace of global reasonableness and pluralistic tolerance — the global embrace of egoic-rationality (on the way to centauric vision-logic).
    • Ken Wilber, Sex, Ecology, Spirituality (1995, 2000)
  • The real problem is how to get people to internally transform, from egocentric to sociocentric to worldcentric consciousness, which is the only stance that can grasp the global dimensions of the problem in the first place, and thus the only stance that can freely, even eagerly, embrace global solutions.
    • Ken Wilber, Sex, Ecology, Spirituality (1995, 2000)
  • Put bluntly, there is an archaic God, a magic God, a mythic God, a mental God, and an integral God. Which God do you believe in?
    An archaic God sees divinity in any strong instinctual force. A magic God locates divine power in the human ego and its magical capacity to change the animistic world with rituals and spells. A mythic God is located not on this earth but in a heavenly paradise not of this world, entrance to which is gained by living according to the covenants and rules given by this God to his peoples. A mental God is a rational God, a demythologized Ground of Being that underlies all forms of existence. And an integral God is one that embraces all of the above.
    Which of those Gods is the most important? According to an integral view, all of them, because each higher stage actually builds upon and includes the lower, so the lower stages are more fundamental and the higher stages are more significant, but leave out any one of them and you’re in trouble. You are, that is, less than integral, less than comprehensive, less than inclusive in your understanding of God.

    • Ken Wilber,

Ego: Wise Words from Hindu Writings

…The ego gropes in darkness, while the Self lives in light… – The Katha Upanishad

All minds are created by ego—the separative sense of ‘I’. – The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

All these expressions of individuality, however highly developed, are the impulses of the force of evolution. – The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

And of these, only the mind born of meditation is free from the latent impressions that generated desire. – The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

The ego is like a stick dividing water in two. It creates the impression that you are one and I am another. When the ego vanishes you will realize that Brahman is your own inner consciousness. – Shri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa

…as long as God keeps the feeling of ego in us, it is easier to follow the path of devotion. – Shri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa

Self-important, obstinate, swept away by the pride of wealth, they ostentatiously perform sacrifices without any regard for their purpose. – The Bhagavad Gita

Egotistical, violent, arrogant, lustful, angry, envious of everyone, they abuse my presence within their own bodies and in the bodies of others. – The Bhagavad Gita

They are forever free who renounce all selfish desires and break away from the ego-cage of I, me, and mine to be united with the Lord. This is the supreme state. Attain to this, and pass from death to immortality. – The Bhagavad Gita

Ego Quotes

Egotism Quotes


Egoism is the drive to maintain and enhance favorable views of oneself, and generally features an inflated opinion of one’s personal qualities and intellectual, physical, or social importance. Extreme egotism involves little or no concern for others, including those loved or considered as close, in any other terms except those set by the egotist.

  • We are, the great spiritual writers insist, most fully ourselves when we give ourselves away, and it is egotism that holds us back from that transcendent experience that has been called God, Nirvana, Brahman, or the Tao.
    • Karen Armstrong, in The Spiral Staircase : My Climb Out of Darkness (2004)
  • Egoist: a person of low taste, more interested in himself than me.
    • Ambrose Bierce, in The Cynic’s Word Book (1906). Retitled The Devil’s Dictionary (1911)
  • I now know all the people worth knowing in America, and I find no intellect comparable to my own.
    • Margaret Fuller, as quoted in Memoirs of Margaret Fuller Ossoli (1884, reprinted 1972), vol. 1, part 4, by Ralph Waldo Emerson, William Henry Channing, and James Freeman Clarke, p. 234. Perry Miller, in I Find No Intellect Comparable to My Own, American Heritage (February 1957), p. 22, says she made the remark at Emerson’s table and adds, she was speaking the truth.
  • The compulsion to take ourselves seriously is in inverse proportion to our creative capacity. When the creative flow dries up, all we have left is our importance.
    • Eric Hoffer, Thoughts of Eric Hoffer, Including: ‘Absolute Faith Corrupts Absolutely’, The New York Times Magazine (April 25, 1971), p. 52
  • The common idea that success spoils people by making them vain, egotistic and self-complacent is erroneous; on the contrary it makes them, for the most part, humble, tolerant and kind. Failure makes people bitter and cruel.
    • W. Somerset Maugham, in The Summing Up (1938)
  • It is never permissible to say, I say.
    • Madame Necker; reported in Louis Klopsch, ed., Many Thoughts of Many Minds: A Treasury of Quotations From the Literature of Every Land and Every Age (1896), p. 80

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