Thursday, 6 August 2015

How to remain Non- Attached?

Attachment often carries the burden of expectations. Expectations when fulfilled, form a positive association in the mind and lead to further expectations. Expectations when not fulfilled, causes grief. The grief can later take on a negative or positive connotation depending on the circumstances.

To give an example, you get attached to your partner. You begin expecting that he or she will act in a manner pleasing to you. If he/she does act in a favourable manner, you begin expecting a similar behaviour each time, adding more and more things to that list of expectations. It also makes you act in a similar manner towards your partner, so that the exchange of pleasant behaviour is continued. There could be a time when these expectations are not met. And then your mind begins to think of reasons why there has been a change, it also experiences grief, self-pity, and anger, and in some extreme cases could also lead to destructive tendencies.

So does that mean you should not get attached even to the ones you love?

The answer is NO.

But isn’t this easier said than done! How can one not get attached to the one we love? Getting attached is a natural tendency!

There is a famous quote of the Buddha which says,

“Non-attachment does not mean that you should not possess something, rather it means that nothing should possess you!”

Non attachment does not imply that you should be cold as a stone and devoid of all emotions. It does not mean that you should not love a person. It does not mean that you should be indifferent.

Non attachment means that you love somebody because you want to and not because you expect to be loved back. It means having emotions for a person, but not letting your emotions fuel negative and positive thoughts about that person. It means not allowing people and circumstances to have a control on how you feel. It means letting the person free and not interfering in the working of his/her mind. And more than that, it means, not letting the working of his/ her mind have an impact on you.

Attachment is a deterrent in helping you let go. It holds you back from forgiving, from letting the other person free, and in having a better control of your feelings and emotions. It makes you expect more from a person. It takes away the joy of the present.

Non attachment on the other hand, means not wanting to have control over everything, not having expectations and having the ability to enjoy your present.

When this form of non-attachment happens, you become free, because, your mind is no more attached to the outcome. You are in charge of your mind and emotions and they no longer control you, rather it is the other way round.