Rising from the ashes, first requires a fire that disembodies everything around you, leaving you the soul survivor to the cataclysm. In this you are purified of attachments that no longer serve your highest evolvement, but you can anticipate to find yourself grasping the air that was once the identities, people, or things you lost as your ego desperately searches for something to identify itself with.
The construct of the ego is to help us survive at the most primal level. It makes sure we are fed, and that we feel secure in ourselves and our environment, but if untamed it takes a toll on our soul as it can be judgmental, close-minded, and boastful in the things it acquires yet never fully pleased with what it has. The ego is in constant search of more, never being satisfied with the present moment.
In this life you’ll never escape the ego, and just when you think you have is when it has its firmest deception on you. Ego is not evil, it is extremely purposeful in our human lives. The evil comes from the inability to see when it has taken full control over you.
As the Phoenix rises from the ashes, it has experienced a baptism of all labels. For that moment in time you exist in a state of eternity, separated from the matters of time and space and earthly identification. This is the feeling of a weight lifting off your shoulders, and if you can find understanding in the bigger picture of this cleansing you are able to let go gracefully of the possessions, people, jobs, roles that have come to their end for you.
Sometimes, the ego death happens when you have been going down a road for so long that you’ve needed to depart from that you’ve been unaware that all the signs have been telling you to turn around to return to your dharma, and finally the universe has to send the clearest message of all to enable you to see that you must exit this road immediately. Other times, the ego death occurs when you have been purposefully following your dharma, and need a push to see that you have completed your role in this project and you must set out on your next ambition immediately as you have much more to accomplish in this life. Ego death can also be experienced in states of deep meditation, and under the influence of psychedelics and plant medicine like LSD, Psilocybin, Ayahuasca, Iboga, and more where the person has stepped into a state of awareness beyond their mind.
For me, I’ve experienced ego death a couple times in different circumstances. The most notable and powerful experience in my own life was when I️ was stuck identifying with a relationship that was clearly not going anywhere but down and a lifestyle that was not headed anywhere differently than that either. My ego was attached to these things it had accumulated although they were not benefiting my wellbeing whatsoever. Living this lifestyle for many years, with the negative people I️ was “enjoying” it with made the attachment stronger. I️ didn’t have many friends that I️ could turn to who would understand if I️ wanted to change myself for the better so I️ stayed where my ego was safe. That’s when the universe, blessed it be, said it had something else in store for me and gently (at the time painfully) ripped away these negative influences from my life by brutally showing me where I️ was headed if I️ didn’t change. Finally, my stubbornness dissolved and I️ received the message.
Having lost these connections that I️ had been making for the past 5 years, I️ didn’t really know who I️ was underneath all of those things that I had lost. This is the death of my Ego self, as the end of its control over me. The beginning of my creatorhood, and ability to live the life that I️ then chose awoke within me and I️ was able to start again, just as the Phoenix rose.
Now, being much more aligned with the universe’s hints, I’m able to see when I️ should probably leave a job, a person, a role, and cut my losses, but sometimes we need help making the final cut and walking away. This is why the universe would throw another ego death at an awakened person. Sometimes our stubbornness, and hope for a given outcome are too strong to let go of without a big smack of reality to shake us up. And of course this is why the Bhuddists practice non-attachment and hold such respect to impermanence.
Hopefully this sheds some light for you,