on disempowering the ego
The ego teaches that things like credentials, prestige, money, and worldly power are more important than love. It counsels that we're separate from others, that we have to compete to get ahead, and that we're not quite good enough the way we are. And by our thinking such things, we perpetuate a world in which they seem to be true.
We can escape that world only by changing the thoughts that created it. Such things as credentials, prestige, money, and worldly power refer to our external selves, and our external selves are not who we are. Once we know this, we escape that world. As we begin to realize that we're not here to do any of the things the ego suggests, but rather to love, forgive, serve, and heal, we disempower the ego. For just as the Wicked Witch in the Wizard of Oz began to melt in the moment that Dorothy threw water on her, the ego loses all its power when we give all power to God.
Love is what we were born with. Fear is what we have learned here. The spiritual journey is the relinquishment - or unlearning - of fear and the acceptance of love back into our hearts. Love is the essential existential fact. It is our ultimate reality and our purpose on earth. To be consciously aware of it, to experience love in ourselves and others, is the meaning of life.