from Ekere-Tere, City of Light, page 232

Ego--what a maligned and misunderstood concept! Ego is a sense of the self. First understand and remember this: a balanced ego is vital for living in the lower worlds. One must have a developed and confident sense of self to move and create in any of the lower worlds. Only an out of balance ego, one that feeds off the energies and love of others, one that refuses to admit responsibility for its frailties and troubles, one that blames and maims, only that kind of ego is a menace in the lower worlds. That kind of underdeveloped or damaged ego, which all souls have in the beginning of their sojourn, complicates and creates darkness and pain and must reap the consequences of its actions in order to purify and refine itself in order to become whole, absorbed into the higher realms, and be useable by God, just as tanning a hide or grinding the rough edges off a diamond brings out the best and prepares it for its true range of functions.

Having said that, Soul must then drop the ego, along with all other attachments, for entry into the God Worlds. "What?!" each soul cries out, "I spent all this time suffering and refining and now I have to drop what I so carefully and painfully cultivated for eons? What kind of cruel joke is this?" Be not dismayed, it is not an oversight nor of malicious design that the lower worlds were created this way. No. Those of you who have any artistic or martial arts training know that you start out learning the basics, build upon the basics, integrate the basics, and add more complex movements and intuitions in order to develop mastery of your art. A strong ego is vital to letting it go without resentment. Strength can surrender without complaint. Nothing is as gentle or as strong on Earth as water or air. It is the force and intent behind its movement that matters.

All life is designed to survive. The ego cannot go into the deeper experience of God. But with that being hard to accomplish in its balance or imbalance, the ego becomes sly and crafty in trying to follow Soul. The mind, emotions, and body can feel ego more strongly than Soul during the "undergraduate" years of Soul's training and development. The ego becomes vain when it is interrupted in its journey. It becomes the adversary of Soul when Soul awakens to its true home and mission. Ego has been awake and doing push-ups in the parking lot while Soul is focused elsewhere. Soul must befriend ego, take charge, and negotiate, as it must do with the mind and emotions, in order for Soul to still the disturbances ego will surely make when it does not get the attention it is used to receiving.