There is a quotation attributed to the Sufi poet Rumi that reads:
“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it. "
One of the principal barriers to living a full life, and to sustained self-realization, is that we are constantly being pulled back into our familiar ego identity through the misleading beliefs of our unconscious inner critic, known in psychological terms as the superego.
This Inner Critic or Inner Judge that can be experienced as an inner voice tells us whether we’re right or wrong, and how we should or should not behave. But this aspect of our ego, named the superego, represents deep and unconscious beliefs that affect us in many more ways than we might imagine. From a spiritual perspective these judgments can result in our losing awareness of our True Nature as they draw our attention back into reactivity based on historic, egoic patterns.
We have found that it’s not sufficient to simply gain an intellectual understanding about the Inner Judge, rather its deeply entrenched beliefs need to be addressed in a more direct manner, beginning with a more complete understanding as to how the inner judge came to be an integral part of our personality, directly seeing its impact on one’s life, and learning how to neutralize its power to distort one’s perceptions.
Our parents, our children, our spouses, and our friends will continue to press every button we have, until we realize what it is that we don't want to know about ourselves, yet. They will point us to our freedom every time.
~ Byron Katie
In truth, there is nothing you need to do
in order to be who you truly are.
However, there is something
that you need to recognize
in order to stop being
what you are not
—and that is to discern the difference
between your mind and your self.
Accept yourself as you are.
And that is the most difficult thing in the world,
because it goes against your training, education, your culture.
If you are more pleased when someone says what a good person you are than when they say what a bad person you are, then you are still a bad person.
~ Sufyan ath-Thawri
The false messages we were told when we were young are distorted, untrue, and don’t serve our peace and well being. It’s like we’re hypnotized, living under their spell. And when we believe these messages, we project them onto the world.
We become magnets for rejection, judgment, and unkindness, which only confirms that the messages are true. Our whole lives feel off because everything stems from these false beliefs.
~ Gail Brenner
God may forgive your sins, but your nervous system won't.
~ Alfred Korzybski
The superego is, probably, our principal obstacle at the beginning of our journey towards consciousness and self-realization. . . . Because it is our superego that decides most of the time what is and what isn’t of value for us and in our life, and it’s the fear for our own survival that makes us accept the tyranny of the inner judge. Therefore a fundamental part of our journey and our growth is an honest and courageous exploration of our values.
~ Avikal Constantino
Do you ever feel flawed, anxious, or afraid—like something might be wrong, but you’re not sure what? The truth is, we all feel that way sometimes (or even most of the time!). We’re trapped by a limited sense of self, held back by our own anxieties, fears, and compulsions. Mindfulness can offer intermittent relief from these contrived narratives, showing us how to be present, open, and available in the moment by observing our thoughts and feelings. This is all wonderful—until the fears and doubts rush back in.
~ Jac O'Keeffe
The superego is the first coercive agency that we encounter in working on ourselves, which we find to be invested in keeping the unconscious unconscious and which accomplishes this by disapproving of the unconscious material. . . .Cessation of the superego is necessary before we can allow that (cessation) of the ego, which results in spiritual awakening.
~ A.H. Almaas
The Superego, in censoring the unconscious and in implanting conscience, also censors the censor.
~ Herbert Marcuse
The poor ego has a still harder time of it; it has to serve three harsh masters, and it has to do its best to reconcile the claims and demands of all three...The three tyrants are the external world, the superego, and the id.
~ Sigmund Freud
Matt.7.  Judge not, that ye be not judged.  For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.  And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
~ Bible - Matthew 7 (King James version)
Don't hide your wounds, friend.
Let them into this last candlelight.
I won't judge you. See, we are all broken.
There's no shame in being wounded.
You have fought many battles.
Your wounds are not your 'faults'.
Illumined, they are reminders of a deeper healing.
Illumined, they are invitations to the Unbroken.
I smell your wounds festering from denial.
Quick, tear off those bandages.
I will take you exactly as you are.
Right there at the heart of your wounds,
infinitely deeper than "enlightenment",
a silent Hallelujah stirs to wake.
You are only a fucked up mess
compared to some second-hand image
~ Jeff Foster
see also page on Superego