I'm having a really hard time trying to put a simple truth into words. So... for now, an analogy...
If it's dark and there seems to be a scary shape behind the door, you might think there is a monster lurking.
You turn on the light and realize it's just some clothes hanging there.
This is the same as the transition from believing that the ego is real, to recognizing it was just a harmless illusion.
It simply was not true that it was a real monster.
You did not need to do anything to the clothing in order to make it not be a monster.
All you needed to do, was switch on the light.
Because it never WAS a real monster to begin with!
Light is ALL that you need in order to be awake to the truth and free of the ego. That's all. Absolutely nothing else.
When there is light, you can see correctly. You can see everything as it is, without having to modify the scene at all.
You did not need to defend yourself against the monster. And you did not need to fight it off once the light was turned on, even though you might've been afraid that turning on the light would prove that the monster is real ;-)
All you had to do was turn on the light so that you could see correctly. So that you could have True Perception. Vision.
The light itself shows you, by comparison to the light, that what you thought was a real monster, was just an illusion. There wasn't anything real there at all.
It is this way with the ego and the entire world. It is an illusion that isn't real. You think there are real monsters and real tragedies and real death. That's because you are not seeing clearly. You are in darkness. You just need more light.
"I cannot see in darkness but in light" - ACIM
"You are only afraid of darkness because you believe it has the ability to hide the truth." - ACIM
So you actually don't need to defend yourself against the ego, or against illusions, or against attack, or against death. You ONLY need to be in the light, and all of those things will be very obviously shown to be NOT what you thought they were.
You will see that death was just a weird illusion. Attack was not really happening. Sin wasn't true of anyone. There wasn't any real suffering. And even what you thought was a "real ego" was nothing more than an illusion of an ego existing. There WASN'T a real ego at all, it was just smoke and mirrors looking like one!
It was all just a trick that your mind played on you because you were in the DARK and could not see the whole scene properly.
Taking vision out of context and focusing on only parts of the scene, unable to see the whole (the whole is God), produces insane fears that objects are really monsters, that inanimate objects are out to get you, and that you are not safe.
Turn the light on!
Light is all you need. God is all you need. Be in God and everything else will become clear and obvious as day. There is no ego, there is no death. They existed as hallucinations in the dark while you didn't have enough light to see what was REALLY going on.
"Now the light has come." - ACIM
"Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and your way will be made straight" - ie, be in the light, and you will KNOW that there IS nothing that can ever be against you. There IS no real enemy, no real attacker, no real war, no real sin, no real sickness, and no real death.
SURPRISE! It was all a wierd dream trip you had while you could not see the big picture, conclusions you came to that were false, and made-up explanations for things you only had partial evidence for.
This is awakening. Waking up to the awareness (light) which allows you to SEE (vision) the truth (God - the whole picture), which shows you that you're just hanging around in an illusory room that isn't really anything at all. You thought it was a scary place, it's NOTHING!
You will just laugh when you realize all that fear and pretend suffering didn't happen at all, and all that's left is you hanging out with God in love forever! Perfectly at peace, perfectly happy, perfectly safe :-)