The Six Faults of the Materially Identified Ego

When the EGO or “I” consciousness has sided with the materialistic forces of creation, it is said to have six faults (doshas):

1. Kama (lust); 2. Krodha (anger); 3. Lobha (greed); 4. Moha (delusion); 5. Mada (pride); 6. Matsarya (envy).

Only when man has conquered these does he acquire knowledge of his true soul nature.

These enemies give further insight as to the nature of some of the Kurus already mentioned*, and also introduce other of the warriors who play significant roles in the battle of Kurukshetra as analogized in the Mahabharata, warriors not specifically mentioned in the Gita but alluded to in discussion of the qualities they represent. For example, in XVI:7-24, in the definition of the demonic or wholly egotistical being, we find a general correspondence with the six faults of the ego.

Within man’s weakness, therefore, there hides the stamp of ego. Since ego loves matter and narrow form, all the different phases of consciousness that are trained by it receive its narrow formal selfish quality. As a result, the following troubles (doshas) visit the human mind.

Kama (Lust) :

In the name and guise of fulfilling one’s needs, ego lures man to continuous seeking of self-satisfaction, resulting in suffering and vexation. What would content the soul is forgotten, and the ego goes on endlessly trying to satisfy its insatiable desires.

Krodha (Anger):

Desire that is frustrated results in anger. … which causes the wrongdoer to be enveloped in delusion, which then obscures memory of the correct behavior of the Self, causing decay of the discriminative faculty

Lobha (Greed):

Ego makes one enslaved to his whims, so that he fails to scrutinize and judge the errors that might be ingrained in the conceptions and ideas of things. Under this influence, he acts not for the sake of duty, or righteousness, but to fulfill undisciplined whims.

Moha (Delusion):

This fault of the ego suppresses the evolution and manifestation of the soul. Ego is pseudosoul, or the consciousness under the influence of delusion. The soul and ego are like light and darkness, respectively, unable to live together. Ego and soul both are subjectively conscious entities. But ego is born and conditioned; the soul is immortal and unconditioned.

Mada (Pride):

This fault of the ego makes the mind narrow and limited. Pride chokes and suppresses the illimitable soul qualities by its constricted consciousness. Pride here means that love for the “I” or ego-self that is constantly on the defensive (or offensive) to support and promote the interests of that self. Because of mada, within the ego there arises arrogance, conceit, haughtiness, presumptuous behavior, and passionate or wanton lust after the desires, interests, or demands of the “I, me, and mine.”…It could aptly be said that mada is such an intoxication with the ego “I” consciousness that man takes leave of his sane or true Self, the soul.

Matsarya (Envy, Material attachment):

The meaning of matsarya, then, is that the wealth of the possible possessions and attainments in the world of matter creates in the ego dissatisfaction, and a passion (envy) for obtaining these material enjoyments. …Sometimes hostile in nature, this material attachment can be jealous, malicious, and selfish.

In its full implication, it incites the lust of desire, and makes it practically impossible for one to reach straightaway to one’s goal and ideal of life.

In sum, the principal practical evil that comes along with ego consciousness and its six faults is the increasing compulsion to forget one’s Self – the soul –and its expression, manifestation, and requirements; and to become stubbornly inclined to engage oneself in pursuing the insatiable “necessities” of the ego.

Psychologically, ego consciousness is a transference and grafting of a false personality. It is necessary to understand and uproot the picketing of ego consciousness and its various tendencies, which preclude familiarity with the true Self.