Attachment is a funny thing. In some ways it is the thing that holds us together and in other ways it is the thing that barricades our progress.
How can that be that it is both?
How attachment can be a barricade to progress is more of a psychological interpretation; being attached means you have a picture of what something is, or is supposed to be, or meant to be and you will not accept anything that deviates from that picture.
If you hold too strongly to that picture you may not see the reality of what is.
I think about individuals who are always looking for the perfect partner. Because they are attached to a specific picture of that partner, they are unable to see how a number of people may fit the picture and so they miss out on really important opportunities in relationship.
Being attached may also mean a sense of connection. Usually this is related to a situation where two or more people have an agreement about what something is and that agreement holds the group together, or makes the group successful.
In the first scenario the person’s attachment is what impedes the creation of exactly what the person wants.
In the second scenario the attachment is connecting and furthers the creation of what the person wants.
In order to create something, you must have a picture of what it is. But holding too strongly to that picture, not having flexibility in how you view the guidelines of what you want to create – that’s one of the ways we fall into the trap of attachment.
We create a picture of something we want to create. And that is good. It is good to know what you want.
Attachment to that thing looking a very specific way is what gets us into trouble.
So if you want a partner that’s great; if you want a partner to have a number of specific attributes, that may become something that impedes you in developing a relationship with someone who will be a good match.
It’s all in the ability to understand how to generally have a guideline for what you want to create rather than a blueprint.
You must have the ability to know what you want de novo. But when you start to think – it can only be that picture – then it becomes something to which you are attached.
Applying mindfulness, in the present moment, and being flexible is what helps us to keep the picture dynamic and allows the picture to guide us without becoming attached to it. This leads to a stance of non-attachment and neutrality about the outcome or the specifics of the picture.
It’s a focus of non-attachment to the picture that allows us to see it change into what is really wanted or needed according to all the information available to us. It requires incorporation of new information while maintaining a strong connection, but not attachment, to the core structure.
Non-attachment is not non-caring. Non-attachment is a neutral stance of allowing.
If you want to create a relationship, but the person has to be a certain, height, age, color of hair, economic status, education status etc then the picture becomes too much like a model to which all of the possibilities are measured .
If you say I want someone who has similar values, and is attractive to me with whom I feel comfortable. Those specifics are incorporated into the guide by virtue of who you are but the guide is not so specific that no one can fit into it.
Use your mindfulness skills to think about how you may be attached in some way to an outcome in something that is important to you.
If you can apply mindfulness to get to the underlying goals. And then allow that to be created in it’s best form, remaining unattached to the specific picture of the outcome, you will see how all things can work out as they need to be.
Sometimes what we need is not actually what we think we want; and sometimes what we can have is so much better than the picture we can create. Being open and non-attached to the outcome allows for the best outcome to be created.
See you tomorrow.