Spiritual Growth: Overcoming Attachment
Spiritual growth gives a long series of fruits, which gradually change and improve the life of those who have wanted to engage in their own personal evolution. Proceeding along the spiritual path, you will get many benefits, we talked about it in the introduction to gifts of the spirit . One of the clearest signs of improvement in one’s spiritual growth is overcome attachment . It is a precious gift, without which it is not possible to succeed be truly happy and free .
Index of contents
What attachment is not
In order not to confuse other similar terms and popular beliefs, let’s start by clearly defining what attachment is not.
- It is not the lack of interest in material things;
- It is not the lack of physical or emotional desires;
- It is not the absence of ends or goals;
- It is not a way of ignoring one’s physical, emotional and mental nature;
- It is not a form of exile from everyday and social life;
- It is not indifference to pleasure, to pain, to others;
- Furthermore, in this context, there is no mention of psychological attachment (as treated by Bowlby). That is a different theoretical concept.
What is attachment
Attachment can be defined as one obsessive form, of the mental or emotional sphere, which leads to the creation of visceral bonds towards objects or people , which are then loaded with great desire and / or importance. The desire and importance that are attributed to these objects, events or people is very high, it becomes fundamental, we cannot do without it, we cannot lose the object of this link. The energy that binds us to the object of our attachment is very dense, visceral; it’s a energetic rope that does not leave us , not even when the object of our desire fails.
It then creates a dependency relationship where thoughts are no longer light, but dark, where feelings are no longer open and light, but solid and heavy. Thus attraction becomes greed, desire becomes craving, the fear of losing the object, status, event, person, becomes jealousy, becomes anxiety, fear. If we think of living without the object of our attachment, of being deprived of it, increasingly unpleasant and painful feelings and thoughts begin to emerge.
We feel the greatest attachment to objects, people, symbols and events that are deeply linked to our identity. In those cases we not only lose something or someone, but also a piece of ourselves.
Why is attachment harmful?
The fear of losing something or someone creeps into the relationship with that object or person and slowly poisons every moment. When we are away from the coveted object, we feel the bite of distance, when we are close we imagine the moment in which we will have to part with it. If it is a person, we will do our best to always keep him close, putting in place (even unwillingly) manipulations and limitations to his freedom. He or she, seeing us feel bad in his absence will have to choose whether to move away and make us feel bad, or stay a little longer (hurting himself / herself). In the first case he will feel guilty, in the second case, damaging himself, sooner or later he will bear a grudge.
Every relationship, whether with things, objects, situations, is nourished by the energies we invest in it. Not only by how much energy we invest, also by the “type” of energy.
High frequency love
Carefree and light love, which does not fear the future and does not think about the past, is made up of high-frequency energy, not obsessive thoughts or jealousy. Having an object that we desire can make us feel good. But craving can make us think that others want to steal it, that we could break it and we would be deprived of it, that in using it it could be ruined, that thanks to that object we are better, that we cannot do without it.
We therefore become slaves to that person, that object, that title or status, without which we would have an immeasurable loss, to be avoided at any cost.
Attachment thus creates a chain that holds us captive to our object, which creates low frequency thoughts and emotions that intoxicate and poison our life and relationship or situation.
The dense energies that we emit during attachment there they deprive of life force . In addition to intoxicating ourselves and others, feeling attachment is a great waste of energy. Those strong emotions that surround us, those close to the heart, that great power of emotions, are all fueled by vital energy. So it’s no wonder how you get there feels lifeless , depressed and weak, after experiencing strong attachment emotions.
Living without attachment
Without feeling attachment, you can enjoy every physical pleasure, you can live every emotion, you can be present in every human relationship and live it in the most true and full way. No longer be slaves, do not lose our freedom or limit the freedom of others. Without depending on any material object, situation, title, honor, social or work position.
In experiencing both physical, emotional and rational pleasures, we will not have less interest, indeed it will be greater. Because we wouldn’t be distracted by the past or worried about what might happen in the future, but our every energy will be directed at that moment .
We will not love less, but more. Because our heart will not be engulfed by jealousy, by fears about tomorrow, by resentment of the past. Our whole heart will be in reality, attentive and focused on what is happening. Light and open. Without any fear there is no need to defend yourself, what cannot hurt us cannot scare us either. Our thoughts will be more constructive, because we will not be the victim of those mental filters that are activated when we close our reason within the constraints of our fears or concerns.
A step at a time
Taking the first step of spiritual growth and overcoming attachment in a single day is very rare. It is usually a path with smaller goals. Don’t be surprised that it happens a little at a time, that attachment begins to decrease in intensity, day after day, month after month, until it disappears.
You don’t even have to be surprised in some areas of life things improve and in others attachment doesn’t decrease at all. In those cases it is enough to meditate on the aspects in which, in those stubborn areas, the attachment is related to our personal identity and ego .
A retired doctor may feel a lot of attachment to the title of “Doctor”. If he were disbarred, he could manifest depressive states, even just thinking about it could give him anguish. Because that title is linked to his identity, he is not a person who worked as a doctor, he “is” a doctor. This means that if his title were taken away, his identity would be threatened, shaken, and in the worst cases almost annihilated. If you are what you do, once you don’t do it anymore, you “are not” anymore.
The first and fundamental step of spiritual growth is to overcome attachment. It makes us free to live everything that makes us feel good without it turning into a prison, without poisoning the things and people we care about most with dense and heavy energies of jealousy, fear, anguish, anger, anxiety, need.
A person, situation, event, object, makes us very happy. Without it we are no longer happy. It becomes the task of that object to make us happy, we need it to be happy, to have value, to be sure of ourselves, to give meaning to our life.
We need it, it is necessary.
Free yourself from need
Need enslaves us and destroys everything it touches, slowly erodes it until our energies have turned us into a bad copy of ourselves. The fear of losing the object of our cravings is precisely what will make us lose it, because those low frequency energies with their heaviness devour everything and because we stop being ourselves. Fear leads us to want to control the situation, the person or object, it leads us to lose trust in ourselves, in others, in the person or situation that is the theater of attachment. The more attacked we are, the more needy, irritable, controlling, manipulative, gloomy, anxious, insecure we become. And the more we go down into that energy register, the more we will ruin the situation, the relationship and our inner well-being.
How to let go of attachment
Few are the gifts of the spirit more important than this and if one does not get rid of this burden, few destinations can be reached.
The first step is to understand our true nature , the nature of others and of the world.
The second step is to experience it . Because reading a book is not enough to really learn and completely metabolize certain concepts. By living and experiencing your own nature of light, you will be able to take the steps necessary to see the true reality of things.
When the spiritual path will be traveled, lived in first person and will be seen, one piece at a time; attachment will no longer exist, it will disappear as the night gradually disappears when the sun rises. It will be possible to remain certain, some point in the shade, on those we will have to shed light with good intention.
The spiritual path cannot be operated on books, it is not enough to read and reason on identification, on the observer ego, on presence, on judgment, on impermanence, on awakening; it is necessary to experience it and see it, what you see can no longer be forgotten or questioned, what you experience will be learned and will become truth.
Attachment cannot be overcome by being convinced of some theory or dogma, it is overcome as a consequence of the development of one’s soul : it is a gift, a fruit that is harvested when the tree is ready. With a right spiritual path the fruits will come by themselves.