When something gets taken away from you, let it go. If it’s a person who chooses to leave you, let that person go too. When you let go, and don’t cling on, you will not suffer.
I was neither a good giver. Nor was I able to detach myself from things and people and opinions. But, over time, I have learnt how important it is to simply let go. I have been a voracious reader all my Life. And had been collecting books. My collection spanned management-related books and those that dwelt on spirituality. I was meticulous with my collection. Each book was wrapped in plastic (to serve as enhanced protection) and neatly indexed. I had over 550 titles – a great collection of management and spirituality books built up over 20 years. Just 550 books in 20 years? – The number actually shows how discerning I am as a reader and how unique my collection was! And then, a day came when we had to close down our office. Our home did not have enough space for me to move these books to. I had to make a choice. Either I took the books with me and let them use up precious living space at home or I just gave them all away to someone (I know) who runs a training company in Bangalore. I chose to let go and give away the books. I called this person up and he readily agreed to accept all the books. He was setting up a library in his new office and this was a timely gift. All the books went into several cartons. When the consignment left my office, I felt heavy in my heart. It was as if a part of me was getting taken away. The person who received my gift of books called me a “magnanimous” giver. I am not sure I am that, but I could make out that I had learnt to be less attached with things through that action. 10 years ago, I would not have been able to do this. But now I believe I have developed a higher level of detachment from people, things and opinions.
Being detached does not mean you don’t care. It doesn’t mean you must not love or desire someone or something. It means you must transcend that love, that desire – which creates your attachment. It means that you must “see” the truth about Life that no one really owns anything, no one really controls anyone. When you are attached to something or someone, you are all along fearful of losing that something or that person. Fear debilitates. Instead if you simply, deeply, loved that something or someone and accepted that while your love is pure and you enjoyed (the act of) loving, you also know that you can’t always have that someone or something. If it is a person, the person will eventually be separated from you – most certainly by death, some day. If it is a thing – like a car or a gadget or even money – know that all things, including money, are impermanent too. Things will break down and have to be discarded. Money will too someday become either inconsequential or unavailable in your Life. So, being detached, really means understanding Life for what it is. And using your understanding of Life to accept it for what it is.
You suffer whenever you are attached, and often refuse to let go, of people, memories, opinions and things. The more you let go, the more you be in a constant let go mode, the more you will be at peace with yourself. In a let go, there’s just inner peace – and no suffering ever!