Getting Past Troublesome Attachments


i am experiencing a moment of extreme delusion and i would like some answers as to how can i overcome this delusion. i do not have a problem with sharing my money with others; in fact, i am quite generous, but i am experiencing difficulties with being able to share my new car. just at the mere thought of sharing it, i get stomach discomfort. please! please! tell me how can i stop this delusion from attacking me? i want to overcome it, but everytime i try, i end in failure, but i am trying.

—ivan, united states


It sounds from your question that you understand the need to let go of attachments. Lots of times it is things or people we are attached to, but sometimes our attachments are more subtle, involving our desires, opinions, fears and longings, etc.

Pretty much as soon as we let go of one attachment, like to money, or to our car, another one is waiting around the corner! And frankly unless your car is a beater, and one more scratch won’t really make a difference, most people are jittery at loaning their cars.

But whatever the attachment, and since this one has gotten your attention, I would suggest first being clear in yourself. Because the fastest way to get inner peace from attachments is getting directly at the underlying attitudes or beliefs.

What causes the fear? It could be a distrust that other people won’t be responsible, drive safely, keep it clean, or return it with gas.

This begets another potential level of worry, that in general you may not feel others are responsible, or you have been disappointed before by others’ behavior and this has formed an underlying distrust. And gee, are we ourselves perfectly trustworthy in every circumstance?

Or, it could be that you saved a long time to pay for the car, and it is giving you a lot of pleasure as the fruit of your labor.

Perhaps you feel unsure in yourself that you can buy another if you should need to. Perhaps this goes deeper into feeling that this car is it for you, and the Universe will not enable you to provide yourself with another.

You see, as tedious as this process might be, when an attitude we are holding is causing us pain, it is important to look beyond the surface and see if we can identify an underlying fear or belief that is running our responses from our subconscious, or “behind the scenes” if you will.

Then, you have real information and can make a choice of how to proceed. You can very legitimately say, “Gee this fear or resistance is a big one! Glad that the car brought it up so I could see it.”

What I have found very helpful, rather than dealing directly with the big resistances like this, is to build toward it.

Using your example, I might start being even a little more generous with my resources or time. I might start giving in other ways, paying attention more to others, paying attention more to my thought processes.

This way you are actually building your spiritual muscles and power of awareness. Forget the car, concentrate on an area in your life that you can improve. Then one day the fear about the car just doesn’t bother you like it did.

The ego doesn’t like frontal assaults! Our deep reactions and long-held beliefs have been formed over a long period of time and won’t go away without some commensurate effort.

Last, be light, make fun of your attitude to yourself and to others, do the best you can and the momentum of all your good actions will carry you toward greater and greater inner freedom and joy.