Buddhists believe that our attachment (craving desire within) to witness or to be a part of specific outcomes, as well, as our aversion to other outcomes is the cause of unhappiness.
When there is a sequence to our thoughts, they have as their object either something pleasant or something unpleasant. If the object of our thought sequence is pleasant we begin reacting to the thoughts with liking that grows into craving, a clinging, an attachment. If it is unpleasant, we begin reacting with dislike, which develops into a rejection, a hatred, an aversion.
Four types of attachment
attachment to my desires, to the habit of craving
When I desire something the thought arises first in my mind and is accompanied by physical a sensation. As soon as my desire is fulfilled the sensation is gone but my mind generates a fresh desire so that the sensation can continue. I become addicted to craving and I multiply my misery.
attachment to “I” and “mine”
I cannot bear any criticism of my “I” or any harm to it and that attachment includes to whatever belongs to “I” and whatever is mine. The attachment would bring no suffering if whatever I believe to be mine could continue to be mine eternally and the “I” could remain to enjoy it eternally but the law of nature is that sooner or later one or the other must pass away.
attachments to beliefs and viewpoints (preconceptions)
I have an attachment to my viewpoints and beliefs and cannot bear criticism of them and I suffer to accept the viewpoints and beliefs of others that differ from the ones the “I” calls “mine”.
attachments to rites, rituals and religious practices
When I fail to acknowledge that these are just outwards displays that contain no essence of power other than what I give to them I suffer.
Breaking the Links
The opposite of allowing things to be as they are is trying to change things to align with our attachments, and there are very few things we have full control over. Allowing things to be as they are is about choosing to become detached, yet, keenly mindful and living a conscious life
in the now moment.
The six ways to begin doing that are as follows.
(1) Awareness – Become intensely aware of the world around you. Take note of what is going on without judging or trying to change anything it. Examine petals on flowers and veins on leaves, notice the tracery of branches in the trees. See, hear, smell, feel and touch what’s before and around you.
(2) Acceptance – Calm your mind and accept things as they are. Practice accepting things that are absolutely out of your control. Start sorting and saying “yes” to the realities of daily life. Notice things like the weather, remind yourself of the fact that you cannot do anything to control it and be at peace with that.
(3) Acknowledgment – Record your negative thoughts and feelings. If you feel out of control and you want to rant or express any intense negative emotion then write your thoughts and feelings down on paper or in an online journal to help take the power out of them.
(4) Breathing- Start by paying attention to your breathing. The practical effort of focusing on just that takes your mind away from the “mind clutter” that constantly tries to invade and eliminate feelings that will lead to a time of calmness. With repeated effort the state of thinking of nothing does occur, and the process of meditation takes on its own energy. The result will be peaceful calmness, eventually opening you to new insights.
(5) Mindfulness – Mindfulness points to: Being aware of and paying attention to the moment in which we find ourselves. Our past is gone, our future is not yet here. So what exists between them is the present moment. If I can observe and not get caught up in my thoughts, it is all that I have. The here and now, the present is the link which holds what was and what will be.
(6) Practice forgiveness – Truth be told it takes just as much energy to offend as it does to choose to be offended. And I believe that the greatest beneficiary of forgiveness is the party who does the granting of forgiveness.
By choosing to forgive anyone who you chose to give the power to offend you in the first place, it removes you from the role of being a victim and releases the control and power that you gave to the offending person, and situation, and that continually manifests in your memory.
Choosing forgiveness means agreeing not to yield to actions driven by bitterness. When you let go of bitterness and grudges, you no longer define your life by how you have been hurt, and you are able to find compassion and understanding for the person who you chose to allow to offend you.
I can now say that I am not choosing to be bitter and to hold a grudge. I am on the path of the peaceful warrior, who has recommitted to not giving her power away.
Come, come, whoever you are
Even though you have broken your vows a thousand times
Come, come and choose to love again.