Monday, June 2, 2008

One finger at a time...

So my brain is swirling around on the idea of non-attachment (Aparigraha) and I'll get to visit that idea in a couple weeks with my Yama and Niyama practice but it's always an ongoing thought in my head. I gave my two months notice on my apartment because I really can't afford it, but just the same it's hard to let go of a place you like living in as much as I like this one. It's amazing how quickly I (and most other people) get attached to things. And it's not just the apartment, it's all kinds of things. Like the fact that not having my cat if I go to Alberta makes me miss him so much already. Or there's the people in our lives or the activities we like to do. They're all so easy to get attached to, and attachment's such a natural thing for us. It's starts when we're so young. We have our favorite teddy bear or blanket and if anyone tries to take them away we throw a fit.
Yoga tries to teach us that attachment equals suffering. This proves itself to us again and again. As a really simple example think of your favorite TV show, you know the one you come home early once a week to make sure you see. Then one day it's cancelled and you actually miss it, you feel bad because your TV show is gone, now there's a gap in your life and you can feel it. But it was bound to happen, nothing lasts forever and eventually everything ends. I think we assume if we aren't attached to things we won't really enjoy them as much. But everything in life can still be enjoyed even if we're not trying to own them.
And that's really where things get messy. We get attached to something and we build it in to part of ourselves. We make it part of our ego. Like me and my truck. I tell myself I love my truck and my truck makes me who I am. And that's why if something happens to my truck I'm so upset because with out my truck I have this false impression that I've lost some part of myself.
And even though I know how much damage I do to myself by getting attached to things and people, instead of just enjoying the time I have with these things while I have it, I still insist on making them a part of who I am.
But like I said it's human nature to attach to things. So I need to give myself a little forgiveness in that area. I think the best thing is just to become aware of these attachments and try to see how they affect my decisions in my life because it's hard to make the best decisions about things when you're worried about the suffering that will come from losing the things you're attached too.
So my apartment is mine until the end of July and I have time to work on letting go until then.
I can tell there's going to be a lot of that in the upcoming months.