“The key point of the mahayana approach is the commitment to dedicate yourself to helping other sentient beings. Building yourself up or perpetuating your own existence is regarded as neurosis. Instead of building yourself up, you should continue with your pursuit of helping others. Instead of being selfish, you should empty yourself. The basic definition of ego is holding on to one’s existence—and paramita practices are techniques that allow you not to grasp onto or propagate the notion of me-ness, or “I am.” Experiencing egolessness is a process of letting go. But you do not regard the ego as an enemy or obstacle, you regard it as a brussels sprout that you cook and eat.”
From The Profound Treasury of the Ocean of Dharma. Volume Two: The Bodhisattva Path of Wisdom and Compassion by Chögyam Trungpa, pages 196–197
If his suggestion sounds indigestible (or you can’t stand the taste of sprouts) then maybe the following recipe would suit you —
It made me laugh to think about
my ego as a Brussels sprout, as
looking clearly i can find what’s going on within the mind—
and ego shows itself to be a locus of identity,
one aspect of the truth of me.
As wisdom puts this ‘self’ in doubt
the dharma gently cooks this sprout
to make an ego-slimming soup
– an infinite compassion loop.
wendy’s ‘About the sprout’ soup.
(Surprisingly… sprout soup doesn’t taste of sprouts!)