Our own ego and intellect become the biggest hindrance in spiritual practice. It is because of the ego and intellect that we experience obstacles in our spiritual development. So, let us analyse these in more detail and ascertain how they become an impediment to our spiritual practice. Furthermore, what can we do to remove them so that we can progress spiritually?

The Ego
Irrespective of whether or not we are able to precisely define the term ‘Ego’, each one of us in our mind knows for sure that, ‘Ego' is something that is not good. Ego is the main cause behind the suffering, pain or bondage that we experience.

Ego is expressed in many ways: ‘I am someone, I am better than others, in self-worth, jealousy, hypocrisy, and false arrogance too.’ These are different forms of ego, and it is the type that people dislike the most. The ego lacks proper worldly interaction, it is laden with wanting to hurt others and it will show something that is different from the world.
Ego is unpleasant and full of ‘I am something or someone.’ Therefore, when people are insulted, or someone goes against our ego, the ego always wants to get even, wants to look for justice.

Anger, pride, deceit, greed, attachment and abhorrence are all inner enemies that block spiritual development, and the ego supports them when these emotions unfold.

The Intellect
What is the job of the intellect?
The intellect is constantly fixed on showing the good or bad of everyone and in every situation.
It constantly sees faults in others whereas hiding our own mistakes.

The intellect creates a divide in relationships.
It creates conflicts, differences of opinions and arguments.
It creates problems when there are none.
Generates fear and makes us suspicious at home, work and in relationships.

The intellect creates tension, worries and stress when there is no need.It takes away our peace of mind and replaces it with inner turmoil and restlessness.
The mind may show us a like or dislike for someone or some situation. If we experience a liking, the ego develops attachment for it.The law of Nature is such that if today we have attachment for something, there will be abhorrence following it, and vice versa. Thus, attachment and abhorrence out of our ignorance of the Self, form the main cause of the perpetual cycle of life.

What can we do to be permanently free from the ego, intellect, mind?
If we wish to exit this perpetual cycle, the key here is to maintain equanimity and remain detached; meaning settling each circumstance with equanimity i.e. without harnessing any attachment or hatred. These are the two things that prevent our progress in spiritual practice, and they emerge out of ignorance of the Self.

Therefore, acquire the knowledge of the Self!
The Self (the pure Soul) is separate, and at a level above the ego and intellect. It is only through Self-realisation that one can dissolve the ego and have the spiritual solution to experience separation from the intellect.
Currently, we believe ourselves to be the owner of the ego and intellect and that is why we continue to experience their effects. We are forever stuck in the rigmarole of the ego, intellect, mind, etc., which becomes a hindrance in our spiritual practice.

But upon attaining the Self, the Soul and everything but the Soul (the ego, intellect, mind, body, etc.) are separated. Now, in the light of the Self, the ego, intellect, mind – all shall slowly dissipate with the right understanding.

To knw more: https://www.dadabhagwan.org/self-realization/

Author's Bio: 

Ambalal M. Patel was a civil contractor by profession. In June 1958, spontaneous Self-Realization occurred within Ambalal M. Patel. From this point on, Ambalal became a Gnani Purush, and the Lord that manifest within him became known as Dada Bhagwan. A Gnani Purush is One who has realized the Self and is able help others do the same. Param Pujya Dada Bhagwan used to go from town to town and country-to-country to give satsang (spiritual discourse) and impart the knowledge of the Self, as well as knowledge of harmonious worldly interactions to everyone who came to meet him. This spiritual science, known as Akram Vignan, is the step-less path to Self-realization.