Most of us spend our early years of this life in trying to develop an ego which is acceptable and perfected to our humanly goals. Many people do not move forward from their past lives with an ego, as that was erased when they were in the between lives area, before restarting physical life on this plane. So most babies come forward as relatively pure beings. Have you ever noticed how young children and many adults are drawn to the light of a baby? The innocence, the purity, is inviting as a reminder of who and what we really are.
But by the time the child is learning to play with others, how to understand and obey rules, s/he is beginning to structure an ego. The ego is a composite of rules, emotions, misemotions, intentions, desires, and beliefs that a person gradually constructs to assist him or her to fulfill the soul goals for this lifetime that he had set prior to his birth. For example, a child may decide early on that she is going to be “good” as being good has brought treats and love from her parents. So as she grows, every impulse she feels inclined to act upon is held to the mirror of “is it good?”. This reflection becomes subconscious and the person is not aware of this calculation. But what if what she sees as “good” is “bad” to the rest of us? Say he was born into a den of thieves who think it’s fine to steal from others. It’s a game. The better you are at it, the more “good” you are. If you then encounter this child and tell him his action is “bad” he’ll react strongly as he already knows he was trained to be good. You’ll get feedback from the ego, which in this case is a calculation he made previously. It will become a game of who is right and who is wrong.
So the child seeks to build and refine a human personality that will help him or her be successful in the manner success is viewed. If he was raised in a household that valued nature and love, and he encounters someone who values human dominion over land and animals, there will be conflict.
The child wants to be popular so she can receive love and adoration from others, so she modifies her personality with those traits that others respond to well. In the olden days, that might be physical beauty and kindness. Nowadays, it might be physical brazenness and snarkiness. Either way, the egoic construct, and the reason for the construction is the same. So a life is spent adding to and correcting the egoic construct to make one into a “better person” by perceived human standards.
In an ever-changing universe, the being fights for something to be stable and not change. Holding tightly to ideas, forcing them to be static even in the face of new evidence, is an attempt to hold onto the ego. By preventing it from changing, the person believes his rightness will live forever. But it’s only his own perception of things that has led him to those fixed ideas. Change the perception and you change your world.
When a being experiences a Satori, s/he does not possess an “I.” There is no locus. The being simply becomes fully what the being is without the egoic constructs. There is a merging, a high level of affinity and naturalness with all forces, beings, energies, materials. But there’s still this singular body just hanging around for which the merged being is responsible. At some point, the body will announce to the being that it is hungry and the being will recognize the responsibility. An “I” will reform, as the being accepts personal responsibility and moves to take care of the body (“I” have a body). After Satori, unless the being recreates an ego, s/he will not eat, tend children, feed the dog, plant a garden. Without an ego, there is no cause—or effect. Every moment, every circumstance is both its own cause and effect. All is accepted as it is.
After Satori, when a being constructs an ego, it is with more consciousness of values than when that same being was a child. S/he chooses more wisely the constructs of the ego, normally to better assist others. Fully aware of who and what s/he really is; aware she is not a body, but that it is a gift for which she has limited use, her perception of life changes radically. He prefers simplicity, peace, love, nature. If s/he has reentered the world of human affairs to effect a change, it is done consciously and with focus. The being’s paradigm, his reality, her universe is forever changed.