Distraction - The Ego's Favorite Defense Mechanism

By Leo Gura - September 11, 2017 | 22 Comments

The sneaky way your mind uses red herrings to distract you from growing

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Robert says:

Leo, I cannot thank you enough for what you said at 48 minutes into this video.

Steve says:

Awesome, really good content Leo

KG says:

Yes, the ego likes to throw stones in the bushes when I’m really onto something. It really gets noisy. My ego is like a gift in strange wrapping paper. Thanks Leo!

Yann says:

I’m not a busy person, I’m mostly contemplative. But admit that if we were all enlightened, this world, this context, this apparatus of ours would be absolutely useless, because as you said in another video, ultimate enlightenment is death. Reclusives are almost dead. Perhaps in the wonderful way you experienced, but they are almost dead. Often they no longer want to eat. Who needs half enlightenment, huh?
Video after video, I sense you’re in that old Plato duality that is illusion VS truth. I’m not saying that absolute truth does not exist, but you must think context! I know you like that word. Personaly I prefer apparatus (or set up, system, etc), but the idea is roughly the same. So there are contexts. So you will tell me Yann (I’m pastiching you a bit here) I know there are context, but you must break out of the context and find you true self!
An escape game, then. Really? Are we all in a bloody fun fair or what?

I think that infinity, among infinite other things, placed itself in our passager seat to see how a human being live. Whereas enlightenment is like giving back the wheel to infinity. But it didn’t ask for!
So yes, you are right, enlightened people are meant to live in caves, because they are meant to leave the world and die. Otherwise, what do they do, apart from teaching enlightenment? Nothing at all. Doing charity? Serves their ego! (read again La Rochefoucauld’s Maxims : he flushes out ego everywhere). Doing great art? Not everyone is an artist (see proud daubs on London Hype Park railings on sundays to convince yourself) and true artists have monster egos, so.
Nothing left to do, in fact, but to leave the world, or wander like a saint, full of grace, with a perpetual Joconde’s smile of one’s face.
So the big question is: Do you really think our context is an escape game? Or do you think the world is set up for a reason (for lack of a better word) and must continue to be a world? Because, again, I believe a world full of enlightenened people can no longer be called a world. That would be already beyond it, wouldn’t it? Nothing to do, nowhere to go, as they say. Fine, but let’s end this world, then.

I like your videos, Leo. They inspire me. And I think you’re right: enlightenment, death, are out of this world, in both meaning of the term.
But sometimes you make me think of people trapped in sects (I know you’re not one of those, you’re too smart and sensible for that): those people whose families are losing little by little, telling them: at least remember the good times, the love we shared. But they no longer listen. Are we loosing you, Leo? They too put family and colleagues down in their priority list.
It’s not time for the big surrender yet, not time for death yet. Thinking about death 10 times a day is not incompatible with having projects and girlfriend. Improving our selves means keeping our selves. And, among other things, keeping falling in love with somebody ELSE.

Yann says:

PS:I’ve just watched your amazing rock bottom video where you confirm that enlightenment is compatible with an active, creative life. So it’s all good.
(Gary Weber is a good exemple of an enlightened guy with an active life).
Jesus, that rock bottom video, that’s something!

Elena says:

After I watched this video im not myself. Im so confused idk what to do. This video got me fucked up. Everything lost meaning, importance after I watched this video.Its hard to explain idk how to say it but it seems like nothing is matters to me after I watched this. Its like im stuck and i havent been myself after this video, lost purpose in perfecting myself and pursuing my goals. What should i do?

Dear Fellow Being,
I understand your confusion: but it is a matter of degree to which we do or the degree to which one attaches to any human function: it is not to not do anything but rather to use moderation and keep in charge of these activities rather than the activity being in charge of you: it is simple: no need to be confused- hope this helps! it is ok to drink, but 1000 drinks may not be ok! as an example.
best wishes, and you are ok and i am too and we all are!

So the only solution to this dilemma would be to do nothing! (a.k.a. meditation). I would also add a mindfulness practice to it. I’m only 18 minutes into the video, so I apologize if this was mentioned. Just felt like I needed to post my thought sooner.

correct grammar is knowledge not spam!

what is grammatically incorrect with: “the one I’m pointing to”?

some people have eyes but cannot see; some people have ears but cannot hear; some people have hearts but cannot love: yet do some have lungs with which to breathe a living death.

prayer/meditation is perpetual, not conditional-imo;

when asked by a monk:”where is your tent”? I would point to the sky.

“you need to see it” May I suggest using another word? You– wish, desire, want –to see it? the use of– need— is – imo= mental enslavement of obligation.

how much more enlighted may one be by choice of words?
I agree with you 99.9999%: keep it up, Leo!!!

sara says:

You should’ve said a warning before this one it was one of the most disturbing things I heard

Ryan says:

The moment Leo called CNN centrist was the moment I knew he wasn’t enlightened and never was. He is actually quite ignorant of the fact of the massive left wing delusion/illusion that he himself has bought into. You can see it in his hesitance to call out or criticize just how unconscious the left is. I don’t think he actually understands it and his knowledge of politics is clearly poor, but at the same time, the truth is so obvious.. That Leos ego itself must be actively avoiding that truth.

Dylan says:

I get mad a loud sounds.
Is there a video u have u help me control and understand, the anger

Ilan says:

Really good video, I’m really going to fix my distraction issue, I’m going to play video games for hours, eat pizzas and the other one extremly important, have sex with a lot of girls. And I almost forget.. I’ll also Watch a lot of movies ! I need to study distraction really hard and I’m going to do it ! I’m really motivated and excited starting that process of studying distraction at court ! Stop being lazy, let’s go to work !(I’ll actually start with pizzas)

Max Raoy Gron says:

The hurricane’s coming. I better do meditation and thinking, I’m being distracted. Islam is for crazy people with a bullshit culture. But why the anti-fun? Lighten up, life’s supposed to be all the fun you can get. I find anti-fun boring, I’m not getting any enjoyment from this. Epicureanism’s no fun, honk honk, brrrrrt, tinkle tinkle, people take this shit way too seriously.

Max Raoy Gron says:

I don’t agree with Leo, I came to this video as prevention from distraction, not because I’m the opposite, I’m being distracted. How can something be so difficult that you’re still not doing it? People act as if I’m still wrong, the distraction is with delusion, with shitheads to which the truth is in their face and they can’t see it, they won’t understand it, they don’t recognise it. I started knowing the truth as it is and my friends and dad can’t recognise it. It’s not just falsities in my head to be dismissed, truth is what I think, and I think functioning from not beliefs is what’s true, I think my religion’s true, and I think social conduct and normality is the truth. I don’t agree with Leo of diverting from being the ordinary man, that stuff isn’t appropriate with the nurses where I live and the drug-pushing doctors. I suppose it’s not easy to get away with being inappropriate. I’m my culture, my culture is this “totally different culture” as Ken who I live with says, and I’m trying to find what that culture is, I’m pretty sure it’s norms you haven’t heard of. I promise you I agree with Leo in one thing: I agree with his improving my life, I agree with the growth and the changes, I don’t agree with getting out of my culture. My culture is an urban and suburban culture of Australianness and making people accept my very demeanor. However I suspect the truth I had before I lost it, it’s the illusion that imagination is the truth, an illusion so good it feels solid and real, there’s no proof against religion. Lack of proof is the very reason to be an atheist. I’m being distracted from unpopular belief, like antitheism, bloody cowards, does antitheism sound evil and like the devil to you? That’s too frigging bad. God is a bastard to whom I can’t masturbate, God says I can’t play poker, to hell with this. I should be having no fun, I should be anti-religious, I should only accept philosophy and the sciences. I’m in mainstream society, and that means I have to act mainstream, you’re in such a society too, I’m bloody well sick and tired of teaching me to be weird, weird is trouble every single time, even distinctiveness is trouble, does anyone think I love a man by being nothing like him? That’s hate, I don’t hate people, I wanna be like you.

Max Gron says:

This is what I think and I think this is bad, is the bullshit Leo’s teaching from what people think, like abstinence, or not caring about the cost, or dying for things. Religion is far worse than pornography, it’s far worse than swearing, a love for the truth, consciousness and being awake? That’s silly! Happiness is my money, possessions and luxuries, and greed, and ultragourmand foods and drinks. It’s so. I should bloody well not listen to quirky people, nor am I going to take that shit seriously, nor will I take my quirkiness seriously, why should I? I’m fucked just for being me without considering the consequences. That religious stuff is silly! It does inappropriate things like fools do. Should I take seriously crap that people think? What Leo says is what people think, it’s not true.

Max Gron says:

You know how people’s intentions is to be precise in their morals, sexlessness, and to be moderate? My intentions are different, my intentions are to be cool, to not have precise morals, and my intentions are to not be good all the time, sometimes I even have erotic intentions, generally my intention isn’t to be one of you people, or one of the weird people, my intention is to be one of the majority and to go to extremes, to dare to do things that are too much for a weird or individual person, my intentions are to have some hate, yeah, my intentions are different, it’s not all good intentions, it’s to dare to be not good, but all the time I have gentlemanly intentions and not rude intentions. I don’t have original, individual, quirky or weird intentions, this is what I intend to do: I intend to do things I’m not allowed to do, to boldly do things which I think are nice that you’re afraid of. You’re shit scared of my intentions because you’re fucked in the head, I don’t have mean or horrifying intentions, I have daring and extremist intentions. And because of this it fucks with your brain chemistry. One of these days I’m going to act strange, and when I do it’s going to make you fucking scared. People are scared of me not for what I do but for my intentions. It’s not natural to me to do things like everyone else, I’m naturally unlike any person in the entire world, and that’s OK, I’m naturally original, quirky, daring, naturally a strange, freaky person, I naturally do things no man will ever do. Artificially I’m safe, comfortable and normal. I think I want to believe it, think it, do it, and create it because it’s me, and not because anyone in the world believes, thinks, or creates it, no one is original like this, I’m the only one who ever was original.

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Replying To: Yann