Ben’s Sabbath Ramblings: Are You Fit For Detachment?

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Last week, I introduced you in my Ben's Sabbath Ramblings: Mini-Journalings Of The Week article to the idea that each Sunday, I'll be beginning to check in with a brief deep thought, a random pondering, or a spiritual takeaway for the week.

So let's talk attachments.

We fitness junkies, exercise enthusiasts, biohackers and healthy living zealots tend to be pretty attached, don't we?

Attached to our perfectly comprised meals, pantry and kitchen. God forbid we swing open the refrigerator door and not have enough stevia for our smoothie.

Attached to our daily exercise session, so much that we can feel guilty, unhappy or even mildly depressed if we must take a walk in the sunshine because of a tweaked shoulder that makes us miss the gym.

Attached to the wearable that magically tells us whether we are rested and ready for the day or whether we had a bad night of sleep, no matter how we actually feel. Data doesn't lie, right?

Yep, we're the ones making a mad scramble in hotel room to find something to prop our feet up on for our morning poop because the Marriott doesn't have squatty potty stools, ripping sheets off the bed to make blackout curtains to remove ever sliver of light at night, and wandering around the gym looking for the vibration platform, ketone esters and blood flow restriction bands because that's what we need for a good workout.

We're the ones who go on a camping trip with fifteen extra pounds of gear: our supplements, our noise blocking headphones, our special sleeping pillow and our miniature infrared light device.

We're the ones heading out to the restaurant with our special back-up healthy sea salt and extra virgin olive oil so we can eat just like we do back home.

Yes, we are certainly and fully attached to many, many objects and pursuits.

But can you and I release those attachments?

Are all these attachments in life weighing you down, keeping you chained and distracting you from being fully satisfied with the immense beauty of simplicity? Or are you able to view them as simply pleasures, comforts and blessing from God that you've perhaps grown to become attached to?

Your body.

Your biohacks.

Money.

Drugs and supplements and microdoses.

Food.

Knowledge. Podcasts. Books.

The social media feed and direct messages check-in.

Can you look at any of these and, as Anthony De Mello says in his book Awareness

“I really do not need you to be happy. I’m only deluding myself in the belief that without you I will not be happy. But I really don’t need you for my happiness; I can be happy without you. You are not my happiness, you are not my joy.”

I challenge you this week to say that statement to anything and everything you're attached to. Verbally, aloud and enthusiastically. Memorize it if you must. Let me know how that goes.

Are you fit enough to detach?

Leave your own thoughts, feedback and questions below. Yes, I read them all.

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9 thoughts on “Ben’s Sabbath Ramblings: Are You Fit For Detachment?

  1. Luisa says:

    Oh that is hilarious the Marriott does not have potty stools … attachments cause stressors when you don’t have the perfect day “ but that’s the pressure people put on themselves .. if the stevia is not there it’s okay .. resting during menstrual cycle is okay .. Life is so much more than our attachments .. love

  2. Katie Harrington says:

    I can’t say yes to some because I haven’t experienced some. However I have to say no to others because what my body craves, I don’t have access to right now. I don’t have access to a garage gym. However what I can say yes to is what I put in my body, I know what my body needs but I need to practice being more regimented about feeding my body. Maybe its because of confidence.

  3. Gro Alice says:

    This is some of the toughts I have been pondering about too.

    I seem to go between wanting to record everything, and do everything “perfect”, and not wanting to record anything and just FEEL how I’m doing, and just BE in nature, and eat what feels right to my body.

    And at the same time this to goes hand in hand.

    It is important to be able to be so present that you can feel what’s right, and at the same time it can be good to be able to quantify that you are right. Right? ;)

    It’s all about the balance – as always :)

    1. Drew says:

      I grok that completely Alice, since about 6 months ago I have been trying to be mindful in determining when to engage or detach, and how to know whether to see the wood or the trees.

  4. Jacob Lopez says:

    There’s an Ayurvedic maxim that has helped me uncover more balance and detachment in my life. You may have heard it. It goes like this: “Everything in moderation is medicine.” The adage doesn’t only denote the fact that we can in fact benefit from consuming things (media, “unhealthy” foods, alcohol, etc.) that we regularly deem toxic, but that we should also avoid overconsuming things that we regularly deem beneficial (ketone esters, blood flow restriction bands, enlightening books, etc.)

    And after all, it does come down fear and yes, a factor of attachment. I have ulcerative colitis and maintain remission 100% naturally. Of course, this comes down to a lot of biohacking—forming a lifestyle around it, even. I know what I should or shouldn’t be consuming, but yes, there’s leeway. Yet even when I consume the “leeway” stuff, that voice comes up, that questioning voice. “Should I be doing this?” It comes from fear, fear of my health dwindling. A fear I needn’t have and am practicing releasing.

    Whether they admit it or not (I’m not talking about you here, Ben), some biohackers do what they do partially because they fear aging, and ultimately, even if unconsciously, dying early. Like Jesus, like Buddha, we have to let go of our attachment to the body if we are to be fully happy. That doesn’t mean we can’t continue to work with these amazing gadgets and food to harness our full longevity and brainpower. But we should let go simultaneously. Through spiritual practice, it’s something that we can feel, this letting go, and we should continue to be honest with ourselves about whether it’s still there or not. Otherwise, we’ll keep getting blasted with cortisol when we’re lacking a certain food or piece of equipment or proper sleeping conditions…!

  5. AJ says:

    De Mello’s book is fantastic.

    Hey, but we have a choice now, we detach when we need to, but when we don’t have to, it’s fine!

  6. Robert says:

    Facing the truth of what you said is having to acknowledge that those “attachments” are kind of an addiction or obsession and without them I won’t be what I want to be perceived as or how I perceive myself or feel fulfillment. It’s like being in a totured state of a never-ending quest. I was recently reading about the people of Sardinia, Italy and they are some of the longest living people on the earth. Their lives are socially closely knitted together. Their lives are very simple and close to the earth. They farm they raise their own food, they are happy with their traditions and family. I envy them because all these “attachments” can never come close to duplicating what they have and it is living a simple life and having love for life.

  7. Lucky Nghi says:

    I think people are terrified of the idea of deattachment. I talk to people about the idea of nothingness. And in fact Nirvana is not a state of nothingness after death but nirvana can be here in the living flesh. A “no self” the death of ego, a zero desire. It often repels people or even offends them when you talk about this aspect of philosophy, haha. People are terrified of releasing attachments because it’s their identity, and to release your identity can be terrifying, I get it, people have a hard time detaching, at least that’s what I am finding.

    1. Yes, more terrifying than you’d think once you begin to “kiss goodbye” to those attachments.

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