If you can think of the ego like a third party, whose sole interest is to “come between”, it has no real intention of acting for the benefit of either party. All it wants is to pit two people against each other, to reinforce division.
It couldn’t care less if you think you are the one who is right or not. It doesn’t care who is righteous or correct or better or worse. It has no allegiance to anyone. All it wants is to make two brothers separate.
As a third party, the ego schemes and plots to find ways to make two people fight. It does this when a person has a split mind, hoping to increase the split. It wants to intensify the division between that person and themselves, by intensifying the division between that person and another.
If you could see, that you and your enemy are both in the same boat, and you both have a common enemy - the ego - perhaps you will see the sense in uniting against IT, rather than against each other.
All it takes is to stop for a moment, and realize, you know what, “the ego” is trying to make us fight right now, to come between us and pit us against each other. ”It” wants us to separate. It is playing us off against each other. Neither of us is going to be better off because if we become separate from each other, we both lose unity and wholeness.
The only sane option then is to unite against the ego, by stepping out of the argument and both brothers agreeing to a “shared interests”, a common ground, in which they no longer see each other as the enemy, but simply recognize the ego is the “enemy”.
When neither of you wants to allow the ego to get ITS way, you will side with each other and join as one. When you decide to do this, the ego has been completely disempowered. But if you do not decide to do this, you are feeding it.
I have found this useful in my own life in experiences of arguments with some people where, I stopped and said, you know what, the ego wants us to be arguing right now, it wants us to disagree, so that it can make us both unhappy.
And this totally cut through the whole argument because it reframed the entire thing in a fuller light, a broader picture, in which the ego was called out as that which was the “problem” and not either person. We were quickly able to then repair the damage seeing that we were in fact in the same boat with the same desire for “separating less”.
The only war is a war in which everyone loses. There are no winners in the ego’s dream of death. If you play with the ego, you WILL lose. It is guaranteed. It’s the only rules of the game. Try to use the ego and you will suffer. The only way out of the trap is not to play it at all.
It is impossible to find a loophole, or a workaround, or some way you can find success, or a way to win, or a way to benefit more, or to be the one who comes away with no effects while the other suffers. It is absolutely impossible. The ego’s game is totally rigged against everyone involved.
As soon as you participate, you are guranteed suffering and loss. Even if you seem to “win”, you still will suffer and lose.
Winning requires defeat. Success requires failure. To win is to lose, and to succeed is to fail. The only winners are those who have separated themselves from others, and that is a loss with far higher cost than any bounty can compensate you for. It requires you to be separate from yourself, and so now you are worse off, in the name of victory.
The only way out of this is to recognize the ego is a pointless, futile, hopeless, impossible mess of dead ends and failure and disaster. It simply does not work, ever. And therefore it is not working for you. It works only for itself and its own aims of separation.
Do not be fooled into thinking the ego can be your savior or your hero or your friend or protecting you or making you succeed or win. It will never do anything other than lead you away from God, away from your Home, away from yourself, and away from happiness.
The temptation to believe that you are smart enough to get way with using it and not pay the consequences, is a disaster for all concerned. There are no winners in the ego world. There is only loss. The only true gain is the return to God, to wholeness, to sharing, to shared interests, and to recognizing your brother as your equal and innocent counterpart.
Your brother is not your enemy. Your ego is. And its attacking you as much as your brothers when you separate from them. Separation is a double-edged sword. Both of you always suffer.