Tag Archives: suffering

Attachment and Letting Go

I’ve just had a humbling experience. And when I say “just”, I quite literally mean that… it’s something that happened mere moments ago.

This experience definitely isn’t anything major or life-altering in any serious way, and yet, I’d like to believe I’ve gained — or re-learned — an important life lesson I’m sure we could all be reminded of from time to time.

So what happened? Well, I was finishing up the blog post I had started last night. This blog post had to do with some life lessons and insights I had recently gained from the perspective of parallels between driving lessons and life lessons. I was writing about going with the flow, vs. resisting the flow — both in traffic and in life. I went to save my draft.. and *poof* — it disappeared into oblivion. WordPress kicked me out because my login had expired. Unfortunately, it did NOT save what I had just written when it kicked me out, despite having just clicked on the ‘save draft’ button. D’oh!

I felt, and still do feel to some lesser extent, quite frustrated. I’m frustrated because I really like what I just wrote, and now it’s gone. My words came form a state of flow, which makes sense, since I was just writing about the very idea of being in a state of flow vs. resistance to flow…  And then lo and behold I suddenly encountered resistance from WordPress, resulting in my words being lost forever.

Then I looked closer at my predicament: WordPress wasn’t the one providing the resistance… I was. I’m the one who felt frustrated at what just occurred. I was resistant to having my words lost forever, and I certainly didn’t like the idea of trying to recapture them. This reaction of mine took me out of flow. …Huh. Interesting.

This brief little blog post that you are now reading is a direct reaction — my revised reaction — to my experience of resistance. I didn’t want to feel frustrated. I wanted to turn this little mishap on its heels and see how I could turn it around and somehow make it into a positive experience instead.

I looked closer. Did it have to do with attachment and letting go? If I hadn’t been attached to those words I just wrote and the particular outcome of publishing them to this blog, and if I had instead just accepted what happened with ease and thought nothing of attempting to recapture those words, then I wouldn’t have been resistant to my circumstances. Right? In other words, if I wouldn’t have been attached to those specific words or that outcome, then I would have been completely at peace with letting them go.

But then I looked even closer: This idea of attachment and its direct correlation and cause to suffering is something I’ve had mixed feelings about for quite some time now. I mean… I actually like the idea of attachment. The way I see it, if I’m attached to someone or something, it means I value that person, or item, or whatever the something is that I’m attached to; it means that I’m passionate about it, that I think it’s important, and that I want it to be a part of my life, because in some way, it adds to the value, joy, passion, and quality of my life! So, with that said, how can it be true that attachment is such a bad thing? Does attachment always need to lead to suffering? Would I not have been frustrated and mildly angry if it hadn’t been for the fact that I was attached to those lost words?

I think I need a microscope here, because I’m trying to examine this darn closely. And you know what?  …I think it is possible to be attached to something without it potentially leading to suffering! And I think it all ties in with the idea of being in a constant state of flow.

If you’re going with the flow, you’re responding to life’s circumstances on a moment to moment basis. If something were to happen to take you in an unexpected direction, then going with that new direction of flow wouldn’t cause a flinch. Being in a state of flow would require responding to the present while simultaneously existing in and being attached to that present. i.e. NOT existing in or being attached to the past. Even if it is in response to something that just happened mere moments ago, like where and when I lost my recorded thoughts and words.

Being in the flow means letting go of the past and embracing the present moment. It’s not forcing a future outcome. When I attempted to re-write those words I had just written but lost, it felt forced. It felt like it would have been an unpleasant and annoying pain in the ass to try and recapture what I had written, and this was a result of resisting my present and being attached to the past.

So, instead, I consciously decided to attach myself to the present reality of my circumstances and to let go of the past. I decided to fully embrace this moment, and to write about it here and share my experience with you.

Attachment is a great thing!  As long as you’re attached to the present. The key is in knowing when to let go of a certain moment as it transforms from present to past. This results in being in a state of flow, from which suffering and resistance can happily be avoided.

YAY! 😉

I suppose you could say this blog post is the result of a happy little accident. Ah, serendipity. Now how’s that for turning life’s lemons into lemonade?