I listened to an online discussion on evolutionary spirituality and evolving beyond the ego presented by Craig Hamilton earlier this month. Craig is a wonderful, highly perceptive speaker (and seeker) who had many interesting insights to share on the topic of evolutionary spirituality and evolving beyond the ego. This article is the first of a series of three on his talk.

Craig discussed the need for humanity to find a way to evolve beyond the ego as he views the ego as the biggest obstacle to our spiritual enlightenment and our potential, both for individuals and also for us as a species. By ego, he did not mean the human psyche, but the part of the self that is run by the collective conditioning (where the "unhealthy familiar is more attractive than unknown possibilities"), the part that is driven by "petty fears and desires rather than higher aspirations," the part that is resistant to change.

Craig said there is very little being done about evolving beyond the ego in the spiritual circles and practices that exist in the world today. This is an interesting and brave statement to make, considering that his background includes 13 years of living in a spiritual community in Western Massachusetts, working as Senior Editor for What is Enlightenment magazine for 8 years, and being privileged to be a part of high-level gatherings of the world's leading spiritual teachers. Despite this cornucopia of spiritual experience, he found few, if any, programs that effectively address the fundamental problems of the ego.

"We think that we want to change, and if only all of our circumstances would line up, we would leap to our highest potential," Craig said. This theory for most of us never gets tested, but he tested it. For 13 years he lived in a community where the conditions for spiritual evolution could not have been better: a beautiful environment where he could meditate for hours daily, where he ate healthy organic gourmet vegetarian food, where he had access to supportive spiritual mentors, where his work life was aligned with his spiritual life. "But this experience did not catalyze the participants' spiritual evolution!" Craig said. "We want things to change, but we don't want to change our habits because we don't want to get beyond our comfort zone."

"Everybody wants to get enlightened but nobody wants to change," his mentor Andrew Cohen has said.

Furthermore, Craig Hamilton participated in a high-level gathering of 35 world-renowned spiritual luminaries, a gathering headed by the Dalai Lama. But he discovered that nothing much really happens at these get-togethers. "They espouse their wisdom to one another," Craig said, but the ego is not being dealt with and spiritual evolution does not happen there.

I am so not surprised. In order to come up with something new and innovative, in order to have even the slightest access to creating a quantum leap in consciousness, you have to be willing to take huge risks, including risks to your reputation, to your close relationships, and your financial status. These "leading luminaries" (including the Dalai Lama himself) are far too comfortable in their positions to even contemplate doing this. This is why Mike Quinsey (a well-known channel) has recently channeled that spiritual enlightenment "may come from a least expected source."

I mean working on a completely new and innovative product is tough enough, but your path is not nearly as risky as when you are endeavoring to bring forth a new way to view the world, including life as we know it. People are a lot more irrationally reactive about their worldviews, personal philosophies, and religions.

Moreover, breakthroughs in consciousness happen where there are huge breakdowns, not when your life is rosy-cozy. When you feel as though you're at rock-bottom, when you are between a rock and a hard place, you still have to be willing to seek the higher answers that exist deep within you. You still have to muster up the courage to go against the collective conditioning and instead follow through with the sparks of wisdom that are slowly emerging from their dormant state. You have to be willing to do this day-in/day-out for months and even years on end, connecting to that infinite inner confidence even while your friends and family think you have gone off the deep end and are actively conspiring against you. But after all of that work--voila! You have discovered a whole new way to view life that you can now share with the rest of the world that will save it much heartache, time, as well as money! (And that will help people get through the hard times that are coming, the hard times that will help create a whole new world.)

This article is getting to be a bit long but I will share one more thing and save the rest for the other two articles in this series. The idea is this: evolutionary spirituality and enlightenment does not come through trying to evolve beyond the ego. Focusing on evolving beyond the ego is still focusing on the ego. It is not enough to be close; you need to be precise to discover the secrets of the universe.

Besides, the ego was not and is not in charge of your life anyway! The focus needs to be somewhere else, and that is on connecting and integrating with your higher self.

Author's Bio: 

Are you ready to fast track your spiritual awakening and finally live the life of your dreams? Get your free Spiritual Awakening Process Quick Start Guide at http://www.ChristineHoeflich.com/ and discover how to rev up your intuition, access your inner shaman, and fulfill your divine purpose. Christine Hoeflich is the author of The Spiritual Awakening Process: Coming Out of the Darkness and Into the Light and Reconnected: A Spiritual Awakening Memoir, available on Amazon in Kindle and paperback / hardcover versions.