In The Illuminated Prayer by Coleman Barks and Michael Green, there is a contemporary metaphor of the limitations for identifying with our egos:
The “I” that so many have defended to their dying breath might be likened to a slightly unstable computer operating system. It’s got wonderful features, but it still crashes and needs regular upgrades. Ultimately it is nothing more than a swarm of charged particles, or rather, it’s only the pattern of charges, completely ephemeral, subject at any moment to error messages, erasure, viruses, random power surges … even unfixable crashes. The Sufi’s response to such a marginal existence is simple: abandon the assumption that this program is who we really are. Marvelous things can now happen. We might identify with wider horizons -like the hard drive, or the processor. Or the network, the World Wide Web, the wide world, or finally, the Great Sea of Being supporting everything.
This opening up of identity is the great work, and no effort in it is ever wasted.
What a great message of how marvelous things can happen once we abandon the notion that this “I” is who we really are. A shift takes place away from the limited self toward the unlimited. We can gain this broad outlook only when we associate with something grander and mightier than us - like the path, like our Master.