Wednesday, January 18, 2006

When Do We Need to Let Go of Controlling Our Destiny?

Since the concept of non-attachment has stimulated some interesting conversations, I thought I would share just a few more insights about the practice of non-attachment that might help you as you live and create your Soul Purpose.

I remember when I first heard about this concept, I thought it meant I would be limited in how close I could get to people. I thought it meant you didn't own a house or a car or anything. It seemed to imply I could never want something or someone. Somehow, I remember thinking a person would have to be a monk to be able to really live in a non-attached way.

Somehow, I started to get a deeper meaning. I can't remember if I read an inspiring article or heard someone give a talk about it, but the whole idea became a lot more enticing, and now I consider it to be a great practice to live every day.

Non-attachment is really the art of trust. It is about not clinging to how, when, who, or where I think things ought to be. Sure, I can want. I can even make plans. I can put forth effort in what I am creating. Provided I allow enough room for new creativity and insight the plan and dream unfolds itself into something I couldn't have imagined. But if I am too attached to the details I kill the dream as I attempt to control it too much.

I used to do this in relationship. I fell in love and then did everything I could think of to turn my partner into what I wanted him to be. That is a practice in attachment. Eventually, I learned I could fall in love and simply let someone be who they are. Then I had to make a conscious decision about whether or not I could live that person. If I couldn't I had to be courageous enough to say goodbye. Difficult - you bet. Wise - oh yes.

It was much kinder to myself and my significant other to simply tell him early on that while I was in love, but didn't think we could live together, than to wait until I had manipulated the heck out of this person's life and then become angry because he just didn't love me enough to change. The reality was our destinies didn't sync up and I was trying to force the issue.

As I developed a sense of non-attachement, (and believe me this was a long, committed process of slowly loosening one finger at a time on my stronghold of control) life became much sweeter. I learned to watch objectively, while I enjoyed the unique person I was falling in love with. I learned to simply notice if I could really live with this person just as he was.

When the answer to my wondering was, "Yes, I love him and I can live with him-allof him as he is" I knew I had found a great match.

Instead of focusing on who he had to be, (He must be the one because I'm so in love and I can't imagine living life without him.) I focused on what I wanted to experience in relationship and let us find each other. I certainly had to say,"No," a few times as I was getting clearer on what a great relationship needed to look and feel like. And by allowing the dream to continue to unfold in its own beauty and perfection, I attracted a great guy that I love to be with and life with him is fun!

Do you see how this could apply to fulfilling your purpose? If you have it planned so tightly that there isn't any room for who you really are and what you truly need (that may be beyond your immediate view), you'll get close, but you will miss the mark.

You can literally fall into where, when, with whom, or how things need to be if you nurture the dream itself, rather than forcus on controlling the details. As you see, sense and feel your desire to create the dream, the dream itself grows stronger and begins to attract what you really, truly need.

In essence, non-attachment allows room for the magic-the kind of magic that keeps the process of self-fulfillment fun, exciting and on-the-mark with people who can easily walk with you in the same basic direction.