The mind doesn’t need your consciousness to accumulate; it goes on accumulating. Even while you were in the womb of your mother the mind was accumulating. And through hypnosis the memories of your days in the womb of your mother can be awakened. You don’t remember anything about taking birth, but the mind was accumulating. Whatsoever was happening, the mind was accumulating. And now it can be awakened again. Through hypnosis the memory can be brought again to your focus. And millions of memories are being accumulated – this accumulation is the mind. Memory is the mind.
How is the I, the ego, created? The consciousness is within you, and around the consciousness all these memories are accumulated on the periphery. They are useful, and you cannot survive without them, they are needed, but then a new thing happens between these two, an epi-phenomenon.
Consciousness is within, you are within, without the I. There is no I within. You are, without a center. On the periphery, every moment knowledge, experience, memories, accumulate. This is the mind. And whenever you look at the world, you look through the mind. Whenever you pass through a new experience, you look through the memories, you interpret it through the memories. You look at everything through the past. The past becomes a mediator.
Constantly looking through the past, you get identified with it – that identification is the ego. Let me put it in this way: the identification of the conscious with the memories is the ego. You say “I am a Hindu” or “I am a Christian” or “I am a Jaina.” What are you doing? No one is born as a Christian, or a Hindu, or a Jaina. You are simply born as a human being. Then you are taught, then you are conditioned to think that you are a Christian, a Hindu, or a Jaina. This is a memory. You have been taught that you are a Christian. This is a memory, and now, whenever you look through this memory, you feel, “I am a Christian.”
Your consciousness is not Christian; it cannot be. It is simply consciousness. You have been taught that you are a Christian. This teaching is accumulated on the periphery. Now you look through the glasses and the whole world is colored. Those glasses stick too much and too deeply with you, and you are never away from them, you never put them aside. You have become so accustomed to them that you have forgotten that there are spectacles on your eyes. Then you say, “I am a Christian.”
Whenever you get identified with any memory, any knowledge, any experience, any name and form, that I is born. Then you are young, you are old; you are rich, you are poor; you are beautiful or you are not beautiful; you are educated or you are not educated; you are respected or you are not respected – then you go on getting identified with things which accumulate around you and the ego is born. Ego is identification with the mind.
That’s why when you are silent the ego is not, because when you are silent the mind is not functioning. That’s what silence means. Whenever the mind is functioning you are not silent. You cannot be – the functioning of the mind is the inner noise, the chattering, the constant chattering within you. When the chattering stops, or it is not there, or you have gone beyond it, or you have gone within, moved within, there is silence, and in that silence there is no ego.