Letters To Seneca – Letter 26

Dear Seneca,

Embedding significance into a thing brings attachment leading to eventual negative thoughts and emotions. This is a perspective I’ve pulled from one of Kapil Gupta’s books – “Atmamun“. There’s a lot one can unpack here, I’ll provide my interpretation.

The ultimate freedom is freedom from the mind. As one gradually becomes more free of the mind that opens space for play. We’re able to play in our work, relationships, etc. We’re open to playing because we know not to get attached.

Attachment is a tricky concept I’m currently wrestling with in my own life. There are many forms and degrees of attachment, my goal is to figure out where to draw the line. Now that I think about it, the process of trying to draw a line in the first place could be a form of attachment, not wanting to fully detach from specific people or activities. Any way…

Attachment is the end, but the significance is where it all starts. We’re constantly placing and rating the significance of every event, interaction, and bit of progress made in our lives. The more significance we place on the world around us, the more we stoke the fire of our mind, feeding it content to think about.

If we’re aiming for a life of peace that’s free from the mind and full of play, we need to remove all significance and in turn attachment. For me, this sounds like an impossible task. For example, take my wife, a person I love dearly and would say there’s a lot of significance and attachment. I’m not sure how one removes significance and attachment from something so close to home.

Now… I’m not saying it’s wrong or right. There’s no judgment. I’m just a bit ignorant of how one can achieve such a task without harming the relationship.

On second thought… Maybe it is possible. Being detached from something doesn’t mean you don’t care and love that thing, it’s about being ok with letting it all go. No matter how much blood, sweat, and tears you put into a job, relationship, wealth, or health, the goal is to be ok with losing it all tomorrow.

Here’s a quote from the book that sums it up.

Attachment is the greatest bondage in existence. Climb the greatest mountain. Achieve all the accolades in the world. Become the greatest in your field. Achieve fame. Earn millions. And you will enjoy every bit of the journey, if and only if you understand that none of it means anything.

A life of wild abandon is the greatest life. Leave purpose to the wind. Give yourself to your life. Surrender yourself to your inspirations. Achieve all the greatness in the world. And be willing to drop it without hesitation.