If everything was predictable, with bland and boring characters, sunshine all day every day, steady progress and all around consistency in everything – meals, relationships, work, play….everyone happy and hunky dory all the time…..well, that would be one boring movie! No body would want to see it, not even for free!
Of course, every good movie has its joyful moments, but even Disney movies have their villains and moments of struggle.
Life is no different.
It is the unexpected things, the challenges that are presented and dealt with, the random characters that show up and have a profound impact on your life, the struggles and hard problems in the workplace or at home that require your full attention….it is all of these things that make life interesting…like a drama that keeps you engaged and wanting to know what happens next.
Attachment is having a “hangup”. It’s a stickiness or a blocking (as described by Zen teacher Alan Watts).
It’s about having a hangup on the things we are told by our parents, teachers, aunts, uncles, bosses and peer groups. Things that define what we do, what we think about the things we do (or don’t manage to do) and how we feel about those things.
We create elaborate mental models based on peer feedback about how we should relate to the world. Some things are helpful –> like ‘don’t put your hand in a fire.’ Others are less helpful –> ‘successful people must drive a nice car, live in larger homes and work endlessly day and night until they are 65.’
In yoga we learn to not be attached.
This means, listening to what people say – but then not getting “hung up” on those things.
This means, going through life without the burden of needing to conform to some pre-fabricated and outwardly imposed model of the universe. Instead, it means going through life with the curiosity of a living organism that interacts with the environment – as part of the environment – and relates to the world based on what is actually showing up – not based on what someone told you or what something is called.
A tree is a tree not because it is called “tree,” but because it is what it is – beyond just an image in your mind or words.