Have you ever suffered badly after losing a job you loved? Or after a break-up? Or even after losing a prized possession of yours? Attachment and suffering go hand in hand. What are you most afraid of in life? I asked a friend. Attachment, he answered. We have come to a point where we rightly recognise attachment as the root cause of pain. But, as humans letting go of attachment is nearly impossible as it feels like letting go of life itself.

Giving a person, a relationship, a dream, a goal – the power to control you in such a way that without it you cannot imagine your existence can have drastic effects. But is it supposed to be like this? Are we to spend our lives in attaching ourselves to mortal things and suffer when we are left without it? This is where the concept of detached attachment comes into the picture.

What is Detached attachment?

Detached Attachment is when you let go of control and allow your possessions to come and pass. You are not the owner but a caretaker. Appreciate, while it belongs to you and when the time comes; let go as if it was never meant for you.

Like in The Bhagwad Gita Krishna tells Arjuna that acting with detachment means doing the right thing for its own sake, because it needs to be done, without worrying about success or failure.

Detachment takes practice. You need to work on it day by day to instil it in your life. As someone who is been practising this for quite some time now, I have listed a few points that can help you through the process. Read on!

Understanding your true self:

How do you identify yourself? Is your idea of true-self, limited to your body? Or, do you identify yourself as the job designation you have? Or you are someone’s husband, wife, father, mother, sister, brother etc. As long as you continue to identify yourself with relationships, or circumstances, or job designations for that matter; you will continue to bear the consequences of their ever-changing behaviour. The moment you understand that you are a spiritual being, a soul living in a human body and set on an individual journey, your way of perceiving things will change for better. The eternal soul is not bound by the body, relationships or circumstances.

Understanding the true nature of things:

I’d like to start this with a write up of my own

“We never really mourn wilting of a rose, do we? Accepting it as a natural phenomenon, we patiently wait for another one to bloom. Likewise, in life, if we accept the very nature of things and people as temporary and transitory, there will be no grief.

Living in oblivion to the fact that all that you see or possess is meant to be transitory will only lead to suffering. When you accept the true nature of things, not only will you enjoy the limited time you have with it; but also, gracefully accept its departure.

Changing your perspective:

Shift your perspective from I am in control of my life to god is in control of my life. Everything is working out for the greater good. For you definitely possess more than a lot of people in this world. Say a prayer of thanks and see your life change for the better.

Busting the Myth:

Practising detachment in no way implies renouncing family life or being emotionally unavailable, or a less compassionate person. Like in The Bhagwad Gita Krishna tells Arjuna that we are really supposed to give up not our families or our capacity for enjoyment but our tendency to identify with our bodies and personalities instead of with pure, deathless Awareness.


What will follow the above practice will be a state of pure bliss.

Originally published on mindmatters.blog