“If you realize that all things change, there is nothing you will try to hold on to” -Lao Tzu-
In Buddhist philosophy it is mentioned that all our sorrows are caused by attachments. At first sight this may seem to be hilarious in your eyes, but if you really give it a thought, you will understand the gravity of this theory.
Just think a bit. You were sad when you lost your favorite umbrella because of your attachment to it. You argued with your friend and were angry with him for not accepting your view because of your attachment to your view. You were crying nights and nights when he left you, because of your attachment to him. So isn’t everything is the result of our attachments to things and people around us?
Being attaching to materials may cause a grief which can fade away with time but, once you are attached to people, you will see that those attachments are constantly causing problems for you. Human beings are quite unpredictable and the way that they change is really out of guess.
You will not be attached to anyone over night and it will truly take some time to be attached to anyone. It can be a co-worker, a family member or even your partner. You will be attached to the experiences you had with that particular friend and to the good or bad feelings that you had together.
When you have pleasant and pleasing emotions with a particular person, you will crave more and more for that particular feeling to enlighten your soul. You will be afraid to lose that person with the fear of losing those pleasant moments to your life. If you think it a bit, you will realize that you are afraid to lose people who make you happy rather than the people who make you worried because you desire for happy emotions and you believe that your happiness is fulfilled only by an external force.
So if you break away from attachments, you will see that you can enjoy a complete peace free from the extreme sadness or happiness. You will first be terrified with the concept of detachment but the truth is that it is not dreadful as it sound and when you detach from someone or something you don’t entirely let go of that. You will only think and care about things in a much healthier way.
Though we idealize attachments thinking we are happy only when there is someone to look after us, the truth is that we never enjoy a relationship that condition us and make us feel entrapped. When we are in a relationship, we always have to think and consider about the feelings of the other person and when those feelings are not in favour of us, we will soon be dissatisfied with the situation we have to face with.
When we are detached from someone, we will no longer hope that one to come and make us happy and instead, we will work to create our own happiness. We will realize that we are much capable of looking after ourselves and we will not feel inferior anymore. On the other hand the person that we were attached will also be happy with detachment because they are no longer pressurized into fit into the image that we have created of them. They will be free to work according to their wish and this is what we call as real love which is different from the attachment kind of love.
So what is taught by Buddhism is that we must learn to love ourselves first. Normally, we look for other things and other people to understand what is missing in us and because of this comparison we never learn to value what is there in ourselves. When you identify what you possess within, you will no longer year for anyone to come and make you perfect. Instead, when you are loved by someone, you will learn to appreciate that love without any manipulation and conditions. You will understand the fact that nothing will last forever and therefore, you will learn to enjoy the present moment in a much peaceful way.
We are attached to things because of our lack of understanding about the impermanence of things and once we can digest this fact we will no longer be attached to anyone or anything.
When you understand the phenomena of impermanence, you will stop fighting transience and you will not cling onto things. You will know that this flower will wither tomorrow and you will enjoy its sight at the time that it blooms. It is really simple like that.
You should keep in mind that attachments always come from the mind. As “Eckhart Tolle” says, “know that you are not your mind”.