This is a pertinent term for me these days and usually a “stumper” in regards to discussion about yoga and eastern philosophical ideas. It is not a term we use in our Western, driven, capitalist society, and if used seems to have a negative connotation…until you think about it for a moment…or maybe discuss it for more than a moment.
We all have had the experience of doing something wholeheartedly or intensely and enjoying every minute of it, but in the end, if the outcome was not what we envisioned, we somehow then become upset and think that the work was all for nothing. WHY? You enjoyed so much of what you were doing. The time you put in brought you joy. The joy was taken away because you expected an outcome that is now different than what you attached yourself to. This happens for so many things…children, life plans, work projects, relationships, etc…in this life everything ends and what we have control over is what is present RIGHT NOW … what comes of it is not in our hands.
Why do I bring this up? – other than our community having a discussion on the Bhagavad Gita – well, many of you know that things have been changing for me over the past months. But, it is now official that Josh and I will not be staying in the Flathead Valley. As of April we will be back to the Midwest doing the things we know best and see where that takes us again.
Of course I am not enlightened, so feelings of sadness, disappointment, anger, and just “throw your hands up” exacerbation have occurred, but they are temporary. I could fall for that same old feeling that what happened here in Montana was a waste, that our dream of being here was just too good to be true, but all that would be false. We came here for a reason and we have to leave here for a reason….not necessarily by choice, but by necessity. I cannot control the uncontrollable.
For me, the definition of detachment is best given by the idea of santosa in Sanskrit, meaning contentment in the face of all things. It is not that things don’t come and go, or that I take myself out of life to avoid heartache and disappointment. It is in facing happiness, heartache, and disappointment equally that brings me contentment. Again, not that I do not feel those emotions, but that I can feel them and let them go. They do not own me or control me or even disturb me.
So, as I make this transition of letting a lot go…a house we love, students I adore teaching, friends we have made, and a state that has been in our hearts long before we moved here, I just want everyone to know that what is most in my heart is LOVE. Clearing out, cleaning up, getting rid of the “non-essentials” can bring you closer to the truth. And my truth is reflected in all those that continue to surround me in these last couple months.
Yes, this end is not what I was attached to at all, but I have enjoyed the moments along the way. There is no waste of time or regret. And, I am pretty sure that we are not done with Montana, so stay tuned…