When you buy or receive something new, don’t you notice how a sense of attachment comes right along? It may not be so obvious at first, but it’s always there in the background quietly grinding away at you.
It all begins with “I like” or “I want”. But once the immediate delight wears off, attachment inevitably gives rise to difficult emotions like worry, fear, concern, or anger as you feel the impulse to maintain or protect whatever you’ve gained.
Day in and day out, we are constantly imprisoned by attachment. Yet we seldom notice that often it’s all these material possessions that are triggering our anxiety or fear.
Despite all the hub-bub, nothing ever truly belongs to you. Our possessions are merely on loan from the universe, and whatever we receive may vanish as quickly as it came. The favorite new cup slips from your fingers smashing into pieces as it hits the ground. You walk toward your shiny new car only to be greeted by a huge, unattractive scratch.
How easily can you let go when a possession is damaged or pulled away from you? Is your day blackened by such an unexpected change?
We will never be free until we appreciate the fluidity of gain and loss. The antidote to clinging is generosity, which you can actively practice to loosen the noose of attachment and desire. In fact, many of the great spiritual masters of the past gave away all their possessions at least once in their lives if not more.
This isn’t an invitation to be reckless! Just an inquiry into the depth of your attachment and the ways it may bring suffering in its stead.
Are you imprisoned by attachment? Which possessions have a hold on you?
I’m so glad you’re here! If you liked this article, please consider subscribing for free updates by email. With love, Sandra
Image: Public Domain