Saturday, 17 December 2011

Seeking the unobtainable?
thoughts on attachment

In a recent chat with a lovely friend of mine we came about the discussion of commitment and relationships, and whether it is possible to sustain such things, for the greater good, particularly when every fibre of being is pulling you in your own direction.
Is commitment and sustainability an option in an ever self-ingratiating society?
Can one commit oneself, wholy and with confidence, without attaching oneself to the outcome, and placing too much emphasis on those things that have not yet eventuated. Because to do so sets in motion a pattern, a learned behaviour, an almost inevitable outcome, a self fulfilling prophecy.
Is it possible to just be? To just be in the moment?
To be committed yet unattached?
My dear friend claimed this to be an oxymoron. And while I would admit to many moronic traits and tendancies, I do believe it possible. (atleast thats what I tell myself- that it is possible- because for me it has to be)
While I am no expert, at anything, I have ventured around the block once or twice and have unwittingly learnt something along the way, and that is - what works for me.
During times of great desperation, those times when a tactile control of my situation was out of reach, those times when confusion, indecision and indifference reign (but not through a lack of want, or a desire for betterment and contentedness, just because sometimes life appears to me this way), in times like this, I have found, that the first step forward needs to be prompted by one important realisation..
An acceptance of what 'IS'.
In this practice I have found a great deal of relief, and light, and focus.
Things just are.
There is only a certain amount of influence I can have over my space. The rest is determined by an infinite amount of other randomness. Unfathomable in its range of possibility. Things happen just because. And sometimes nothing happens at all. Seldom does it happen the way I planned it, or wish it to.
Accepting that things just are/were/will be, is the first step to a freedom that allows me to commit myself without attachment.
I have also learnt to hope less, much less, as in not at all. Hope breeds in me the unnecessary and usually unfulfillable expectations that I place on my relationships, whenever I decide to commit. I realise now that it is totally unfair to ask so much, particularly of the unknown, of an uncertain future. All I really possess is the ability to enjoy this very moment, or not.
Hope has hurt me, or more precisely misled me, And in my experience come to very little, if anything, except to assist in division and derision.
It occurs to me that hope is another brand of worry, which can (not all the time, but most often) manifest itself in me as stress. And to stress about events that have not even come to pass is futile, harmful, toxic even, not to mention a complete waste of very useful energy. Energy that would be far better spent looking for, dissecting and enjoying the minutia of the moment I am in. Not focussing on the 'when' or the 'in future' or for that matter the 'back then'.
For me, reminiscing is just as damaging as hope. Bedfellows if you like. Nasty ones. Not the good nasty.. but the bad.
I have learnt to reminisce as little as possible, and if I do, I balance the books these days.
By nature I think we choose to remember the good times, the sugar coated details, thats how we are wired. I now try to note the bad as well. In doing so I truly believe that I am breaking a pattern. I find that this has helped me greatly reduce my attachment to the future, and what might be. An ideal world is for me a totally different dimension, and not one that is readily accessible to me in this current state. But it is accessible to me in this current moment. By having no attachment to the outcome.
I wont go into the exact detail of my situation, but I have found that by adhering as closely as possible to these principles, believing in them, concentrating on this precious moment, instead of what may be over the horizon, or what was back in the day, has enabled me a far greater freedom to be, and vitally, to let others be. Important and relevant others.
In practice, it has enabled another perspective to open up to me.  One that isn't directly influenced by emotion, which in my eyes is tight and ringfenced. I can only describe it as a wider view, with more space, into which I can move, or create, or even invite something or someone. 
This has been my experience, and I feel all the better for it. For sure it is difficult and it does take alot of discipline, but with practice it becomes easier.
Some might read this post quite literally and see me as being rather pessimistic, giving up hope and reminiscence... But I see it in quite the opposite light.  
Horses for courses I suppose.
I'm always interested in hearing how others manage to deal with expectation and attachment and commitment etc. So if you care to throw in your 2 cents worth, please feel free.      


naughtyangel420247 said...

"It occurs to me that hope is another brand of worry, which can (not all the time, but most often) manifest itself in me as stress."

After careful thought, I must admit that this statement rings true for me.

Anonymous said...

I agree with you, that being in the moment is often the best way to live. We can't change the past and can't predict or control the future, so why not be fully present in the current moment. It requires a degree of mindfulness that I have not yet mastered, but I am trying!

both.hands.please said...

Well NaughtyAngel, I guess the only bit of advice I could offer is to eliminate as much stress from your life as you can, by whatever means possible. But you already knew that.
And... thanks for stopping by my blog. You are welcome here.

And Holly, my sentiment exactly. Once you do master that, I'll be the first to seek your help, or buy your book!
I wish you all the very best in your efforts. (I hope you already knew that too)