Are you in possession of something or is it in possession of you?
So very often we get attached to things. Every attachment fuels a desire to control. To possess. To own. Unknown to us, we end up being possessed by it! There are people who are worried about their status and prestige in society. To them, being humble, being ordinary, being vulnerable is suffering because they are constantly worried about what others will think about them. They no longer earn their status, they are controlled by having to keep it! Some are attached to their property, their car, their phones, their desks, their cameras and sometimes, to their opinions. Even attachment to an idea can cause suffering.
For instance, some have an idea that they will be happy subject to certain conditions being fulfilled. So, if those conditions are not met, they will be unhappy. This applies to habits too. Are you owning a packet of cigarettes or is it owning you__when you are in a no-smoking area and your mind is on the packet with you and on your craving to smoke, it is controlling your every thought, isn’t it? There’s a poem that describes The Buddha thus: “The Buddha is like a full moon sailing across an empty sky.” Meaning that The Buddha’s happiness was immense because he possessed nothing.
When our mental landscapes are full of things that we possess__ideas, material objects, opinions, habits, worries__we are no longer in charge of our lives. When we let go of every single thing we possess__physically, literally, figuratively and metaphorically__we will be blissful. This does not mean abdication. This means remaining detached so that we too can sail with abandon in the beauty of this wondrous Universe.