What Is Your Deepest Attachment?

Sadhguru looks at how teachings about detachment are fundamentally wrong, and the key to going deeper in life is to be absolutely attached to the whole existence.
What Is Your Deepest Attachment?
 

Sadhguru looks at how teachings about detachment are fundamentally wrong, and the key to going deeper in life is to be absolutely attached to the whole existence.

Sadhguru: So many things are being said about attachment being bad and how we should not get attached to anything. Because of these teachings and misunderstandings, and because of the pain that people go through with attachment, there are a lot of questions and hesitation within people.

The bondage with the body is deep. That is the source of all attachments.

These teachings of detachment and being desire-less have come because of the fear of entanglement. Entanglement always creates pain and suffering within a person. So, somebody gave this foolish solution – be detached. This means that according to them, the solution for life is to avoid life. If someone want to avoid life, they must die; it is very simple. But being alive here and wanting to die – and not dying, is a big torture.

If you want to live, you need involvement. People think spirituality means you should drop your family. By dropping someone, you will not become spiritual. You may not be fully aware of it, but in so many ways your defense mechanisms and survival techniques are slowly trying to shift your attachment to your ideologies, philosophies, likes, dislikes, and your emotions, which then grow to things around you. This is the real accumulation, the biggest attachment – your personality. And this is what you need to throw; not your wife, child, bank balance or something else.

The Deepest Attachment

When you are young, you seek physical freedom. When you become 35 or 40 years of age, you start saying, “Oh, that was foolish. Emotions and what we share between us is important.” As you get older, you will see these emotions are too entangling and you will not like that. You will want to shift your attachment to God.

You really need to work with your attachment to your own body. If you release yourself from this, you are free from everything.

It must be understood that your deepest sense of attachment is not to your money, house, wife or child. Your deepest sense of attachment is to your own thought and emotion. You may feel your wife, job and child are dear to you, but please see, when your wife, child or the situations around you really go against the way you think and feel, you will drop all of them. You will not drop your ways of thinking and feeling, but you will drop the other person because the other person has stopped fitting into your life. They are in your life only because they have made the compromise to agree with whatever you think and feel.

You are just using someone as a means or as a victim. It is because you are deeply attached to your body that you get attached to somebody. If you are not attached to your own body, you can be deeply involved but unattached. So, you do not have to work on your attachments with people around you. You really need to work with your attachment to your own body. If you release yourself from this, you are free from everything.

Teachings that say “Do not get attached” are not going to work. Unless experientially it is clearly within you that, “this body is not me”, there is no way you can become unattached from the body.

Indra the Pig!

There is a nice story about this. Once, Indra, the king of all gods, came to earth seeking pleasure. He chose the form of a pig because generally, in terms of physical pleasure the form of a pig is considered best. He found himself a beautiful female pig, married her and produced dozens of piglets with her. Over time, he got very deeply involved and attached to them.

The gods waited patiently in heaven thinking it was a short pleasure trip but when Indra did not return for a long time, they came down and saw this whole pig-business in progress. They tried to reason with him to give up the pig’s life and return to the heaven. But Indra was so deeply involved and attached to all this, he just grunted and left!

If you can truly get attached to another being, it is wonderful and fantastic but when you get attached to your own body you become so limited.

The gods then decided to kill one piglet hoping that the tragedy would make Indra realize his true nature and return. But, suppose you have five children, and you suddenly lose one, you will cling to the remaining four harder. That is the way. If you lose one more you cling to the remaining three even harder, isn’t it? For every piglet killed, Indra clung to the remaining ones harder. Eventually, the gods killed all the piglets.

But Indra got busy producing more children. Then the gods thought that Indra’s real attachment was his wife so they killed her. Now he was greatly distressed. Soon, his pig friends and relatives suggested he take another wife. And the whole pig-business started again.

The gods were now completely at a loss with this and Narada, the wise sage who was passing by and happened to see all this said, “Why did you kill his wife and kids? His attachment is to his body. Destroy the body”. So, the gods cut his body into two halves and Indra came out and said, “What the hell am I doing here?” and returned to heaven.

The bondage with the body is deep. That is the source of all attachments. If you can truly get attached to another being, it is wonderful and fantastic but when you get attached to your own body you become so limited. So, you do not have to go on searching for non-attachment somewhere else or distancing this and that in your life. You simply need to know how to distance yourself from your own body. Yoga is a whole complete science, a tool and technology to bring about this sense of separation and freedom from the accumulation of the body.

Absolute Attachment is the Key

Whether you like it or not, in your breath, body and being, you are in an inseparable attachment with the whole. So do not hesitate about attachment; do not listen to all those teachings about detachment. Right now, with all these teachings that attachment is bad, you are hesitating to be involved. Freedom will not come because you make yourself exclusive. Freedom comes only by including everything as a part of yourself. If you include everything as a part of yourself, then you will have no identity left; that is yoga.

When you get attached to the whole Existence, you are in yoga.

Yoga means attachment. When you get attached to the whole Existence, you are in yoga. Or, when you realize how inseparably you are attached with the Existence, that is your Vishwaroopa – Universality. Let your attachment be indiscriminate; it will lead to bliss. It is selective, prejudiced attachment that causes pain.

The beauty and the grandeur of life is known only to one who is indiscriminately and absolutely involved with all that is. This will not only make you attached to everything, but also dissolve the small self that you have created.

Editor’s Note: Sadhguru offers Isha Kriya, a free, online guided meditation that helps bring health and wellbeing. Daily practice of this simple yet effective 12-minute process can transform one's life.

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4 years 3 months ago

May with your grace oh my Master.... we attain Yoga... May your lotus feet grant us that boon... Abhishtha Gati pradabyam... Please grant this to us...

4 years 3 months ago

So, the gods cut his body into two halves and Indra came out and said, “What the hell am I doing here?” and returned to heaven.hahahahahahhaha jai Gurudev!!

4 years 3 months ago

I need a help

4 years 1 month ago

Kind of confused...attachment to someone is wonderful, but then it's not?

4 years ago

Thank you. Sadhguru... I had this question about vishwaroopa...i was to ask you i s Vishwaroopa our own. BEING IN UNION WITH THE WHOLE COSMOS? here you gave me the answer. I know I just have to be intense in my seeking and my questions do get answered in some way...from somewhere - out of the blue. Surrendered.

3 years 9 months ago

According to Patanjali, non-attachment is critical for realization of the truth. In fact, he claims the primary goal of Yoga is “chitta vritti nirodhah” (1:2), or the restraint of the modifications of the mindstuff (mental stillness) and that two methods can help us to accomplish this goal: “practice and non-attachment” (1:12). Moreover, my Guru said of these two non-attachment is the most important because initially most people don't tend to be regular with their practice.

The fact that non-attachment is so important makes sense because if we are attached to the world, it will be difficult to realize the true reality, which is not of this world. And it is the mind that becomes attached to things, not the body. No one said attachment was “bad” but it does cause pain and no one likes pain. The mind is a sensory organ receiving impressions from the outside world; these impressions form a mental filter through which we perceive reality, which then gives rise to the ego, so the mind and the ego are only temporary because the world and ideas change. The goal of Yoga is to reduce the mind's density and the ego eventually making the mind still (the mind's natural state), which would be a challenge if one is attached to anything in the world.

Ramana Maharshi, one of the purest Yogis I know, said withdrawal of the senses from the world is critical because it is the senses that draws us into the world, which in turn colour our mind with our experiences, thus forming a veil that hides the true reality. The practice of Pratyahara or sense withdrawal on the 5th limb of Patanjali's Ashtanga Yoga is a form of non-attachment, which then takes us to the 6th limb of concentration where it then becomes much easier to perform meditation (7th limb) because the senses are detached from the outside world. In fact, the whole process of enlightenment involves a gradual detachment from the outer world as we move more into the inner or spiritual world.

Realization occurs when the mind is colourless and consciousness is pure, so it makes sense for us to try to remain colourless or detached from the world if we want to maintain our mental peace. This does not imply running away from life's experiences because life is here to teach us lessons, but the point is not to cling to the experience when it is over because there is no lasting happiness in this world. We are just witnesses and Nature is here to teach us the Truth, but we should try not to become attached to any of the experiences because we may feel loss, and therefore, pain when the experience is over. In short, non-attachment, or sense withdrawal creates mental purity, and when the mind is pure, we see the Truth.

3 years 7 months ago

thank you, Yogini Saraswati Celesté, for sharing this nourishing comment to the wonderful blog from Sadhguru. in a way (at least to my imperfect mindset) you seem to be saying the same thing but in a different way. now i probably am going to fall short on this but my gut feeling is while one may "dissolve the small self" one has created, and "see the Truth", as long as we are in the body after the "beauty and grandeur of life" and "mental purity" we do as we did before (like the Zen saying, before enlightenment chop wood and wash the dishes, after enlightenment chop wood and wash the dishes)? Then hopefully, we are returning to this internal & eternal place of peace & bliss often through conscious breathing and or other meditative / mindful practices... until it is unbearable and as in Sadhguru's story of Indra split in two, we will return to our true destination & eternal home, Source.