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How To Practice Detachment & Free Your Mind

According to Buddhist Philosophy, attachment is one of the roots of all suffering. It is one of three poisons or “unwholesome roots” which also include ignorance and aversion. These three poisons lead to the creation of karma, and of these three, ignorance is the root. When someone suffers from ignorance they will soon suffer from attachment. The key is to practice detachment.

How does this make any sense?

Isn’t attachment a good thing?

Because I am attached to something, I am ignorant?

unlock your mindFirst, the term ignorant is misunderstood by many people. Most see it and use it as an insult, but all It really means is simply being unaware. I don’t like how the dictionary defines ignorant as “lacking knowledge or being uneducated.” Ignorance is simply delusion or being unaware of what is truly important. A majority of the world is ignorant including myself – it is very hard not to be ignorant to certain things, and this results in you becoming attached.

Attachment is brought on to you by your parents or whomever raised you as a child. I believe you are at your purest form when you are first-born – you don’t know anything at all – you have no attachment or knowledge to poison you. Then your parents suck you into a pre-conditioned reality, and give you a name and a role that you must follow. Whether boy or girl, you have this role that your parents brought on to you. To fulfill this role, you need knowledge and attachments.

I can remember way back in time to when I first started suffering from attachment. I was a little boy, and I had a box filled with an abundance of toys. When my cousins would come over, I would take all of the toys and hide them so that they could not take any of them. One day my mother realized that I was doing this. She opened the box of toys and started handing them out to my cousins. While I sat there and cried my eyes out, my mother smiled and said, “You have 500 toys, what do these 3 toys matter to you?”

The truth is that the individual toys didn’t matter at all to me – it was the fact that they were MY toys is what really mattered. The next day my grandfather visited us and he would always bring me new toys – I could care less about the ones that my mother gave away. This just proved that I was attached to something in an unhealthy way. I cared nothing about the specific toy – I just cared that it was mine and people knew that I owned it. The attachment I had to these toys was affecting me and my relationship with my cousins in unhealthy ways.

So back to the question of “is attachment a good thing?” Attachment is not good or bad, but it can be unhealthy at times.

I like to explain attachment vs. detachment with a few rules:

  • If the object or person that you are attached to cannot be attached back to you, it is unhealthy and unnecessary.

  • If you can’t easily replace what you are attached to, then you suffer from materialism.

  • Attachment to each other is unavoidable and will bring both happiness and sorrow no matter what the situation – people live and people die. The happiness outweighs the sorrow.

  • Attachment should not include controlling behavior when dealing with relationships.

detachment of the human mind from the egoI suffer from attachment, and I have been working on practicing detachment for a while. If you believe attachment is affecting your health or life I suggest starting to practice detachment with a simple routine:

Detach the words Imy, and mine from your vocabulary.

Meaningless objects become so significant to your life because of the titles that you give them, and the need to show them off to represent social status. I just recently bought myself a brand new car, but I made sure that I did not form any type of attachment to it. I’ve wanted it for years and worked hard for it, but I realized that it is truly meaningless and easily replaceable. When I first got it, I caught myself showing off when I didn’t truly intend to. I talked about my car all the time to the point where I actually annoyed and bothered myself. Now every time I call it MY car or MINE, I stop myself and say “THE car.” Practicing detachment from my car has removed a sense of materialism from my life.

Another good example is the over protective boyfriend: – “Hey, stop looking at MY girlfriend.” Take a minute and think about how you are really attached to the fact that she is “yours” rather than actually being attached to her. The ego has a lot to do with attachment.

Another method of controlling attachments is to realize that you have an ego and confront it. The ego needs things and needs to be attached to things. Having an ego is not good or bad – everyone has an ego but you have to be able to tame it when the situation calls for it. It is simple to spot egos in other people, but sometimes harder to realize that you have a big ego yourself. When you catch your ego taking over, just laugh at it – this is the best way to spot it and tame it quickly. Practice detachment from the idea that you are “better” than anyone else in your reality.

If you can practice detachment from these meaningless things and tame your ego, you will see great results with your new-found inner-happiness and clear mind. 🙂

Additional articles from: breakinbadd

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2 Responses to How To Practice Detachment & Free Your Mind

  1. Pingback: The Art of Letting Go | fashionpsychoblog

  2. Pingback: Attachment & suffering | With no vaseline | Vegan Mama

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