The ego has a lot of levels. 

Mental, emotional, and body levels are three simple ones, but they are also intertwined with different issues and attachments (like people-pleaser attachments) that have many other levels as well.

Because of this, people are often dismayed and overwhelmed at the many levels of the ego they find. Illusions of this being a short and easy path are exposed, and the enormity of their internal monster comes into view.

Additionally, tools that work on the level of the mind often don’t work or are counterproductive on other levels. Our spiritual work evolves as we get into different spaces which ask different things of us. 

With this in mind, I wanted to talk about how we learn to work on different levels of the ego. If you have taken my “How to Do Inner Work” class, this is a nice follow-up to it.

Announcements for this class will go out through my newsletter. If you aren’t signed up for it, you can sign up here:

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Working on Different Ego Levels Class Description

Learning to look within ourselves exposes us to much more complexity than most any of us could ever have guessed. While the spiritual path is simple, our egos are not.

Because that can be overwhelming for many people, I want to offer guidance to help you in your process of unlearning your ego.

One of the biggest points to make is that most of our ego is subconscious. Years of experiences and impressions built up during childhood years define how we perceive and how we feel about ourselves and countless situations. These perceptions and feelings further limit and skew how we think.

So while it is important to work with the levels of ego we can easily think about and observe (like watching our thoughts), it’s even more important to get down into these subconscious waters.

The Iceberg of the Ego

You can think of the ego like an iceberg. The smallest part of it is visible above the waterline. The largest part is below the waterline. It’s down into these levels we need to go. Otherwise, we tend to re-create new surface ego structures. We adopt new beliefs and do new jobs, but they really aren’t different. They’re all still built on the same basic assumptions and feelings. 

This is why people create unconscious spiritual egos all the time.

So in this class, I intend to talk about the primarily emotional and sensory stuff that makes up the biggest part of the ego iceberg. Sure, there are some thoughts, forgotten memories, and repressed ideas down here too. But the biggest and most challenging levels are emotional and physical. The heart and body are powerful, and they define us much more than most people realize.

Additionally, core issues and other big issues tend to have multiple levels to them. Self-worth issues and scarcity issues are two systemic issues. They operate intellectually, emotionally, and physically. Many people get frustrated when they can intellectually understand these two, but they can’t get rid of them. 

Why can’t they release them? 

Usually, it’s because they are ignoring or inappropriately trying to work on the emotional and physical aspects to these two core issues.

Another way to understand core issues is like this. Take a self-worth issue. It can show itself as a person who has trouble expressing themselves. So they learn to express themselves, but then more powerful emotions come up. So they have to learn to breathe and surrender into them. Then perhaps memories come up. Then the person might journal about them or talk with a friend to work them out. Then things release a little, but still more comes up. Some of the deeper physical clenching and tensing that is part of the feelings of self-worth gets seen, and then the person has to intentionally relax and re-relax and re-re-relax the body to help the body unlearn the self-worth issue.

It is a lot of work at times. 

Additionally, major issues require inner work to counteract the fact that every day a person with a self-worth issue wakes up and subconsciously remembers all of this and repeats it in countless obvious ways (like the difficulty in expressing themselves) and many others. We have to learn to break that cycle.

There’s a lot here to talk about, but this should give you some idea of the levels of ego and levels of issues that I will discuss.

Here are some more resources on this topic:

Beware the Spiritual Ego

The Many Levels of Ego

Why You Want to Come

As always, you want to come to my classes because you’re on the path to realizing spiritual freedom. 

How to Find Spiritual Freedom

In addition, you want to come to:

  • Better understand the different levels of your ego,
  • Better understand different levels of issues,
  • Learn how to adjust your spiritual practice to appropriately address a level,
  • Stop avoiding levels or using tools that are irrelevant to a specific level,
  • Stop bypassing in general,
  • Feel more confident in going into new levels, and more.

Specifics of the Working on Different Ego Levels Class

Here are the specifics of how the class works. 

  • Have two classes–one at 10:30 AM Pacific Time and another at 5:30 PM Pacific Time 
  • Have a class of around 10 people
  • Meet online via Google Meet (this online video service is free)
  • Meet for 1 hour and 1/2
  • Most of the class will be a lecture style
  • There will be around 1/2 hr for people’s questions

The suggested donation is 50 USD for those who can afford it. For everyone else, it is whatever fits your budget. Please don’t donate until after we spoken together and you’ve gone through the enrollment process. Signing up for my newsletter is NOT the enrollment process. That comes later.

If you have questions about this class, I’m happy to answer them. 

Once again, if you’re interested and aren’t on my free newsletter, you can sign up below. I’ll send out an announcement when I’m enrolling people in the Working on Different Ego Levels Class.

In love and kindness,

Jim Tolles


I'm a spiritual teacher who helps people find freedom from suffering.

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