Wednesday, December 30, 2009

letting go

Judy Lief teaches us to walk through life without holding on. - From Tricycle

IN OUR FAST-PACED SOCIETY, letting go is often paired with moving on. People encourage friends who have suffered a loss to learn to let go of the past and get on with living. In New Age terminology, “just let go” has become an all-purpose piece of advice. But we humans are very cunning: While we talk a lot about letting go, we usually find a way to have our cake and eat it, too—to let go and still manage to hang on. In fact, it is easy to use the notion of letting go as yet another ego-tool. We can use it to prop ourselves up, to cloud things over, and uphold our illusion of solidity. We are so clever: we can take a concept like letting go, so threatening to our ego-fixation, and turn it completely on its head, so that instead it becomes a credential, an ego adornment. We can take pride in our letting go and revel in how pure we are now that we have pared down and simplified and become so much less materialistic. We can mask our laziness by seeing it instead as a letting go of ambition; we can mask our inability to connect with other people with the more spiritual notion of letting go of frivolous attachments. The possibilities are endless. So if we are to deepen our understanding of letting go, it is important to begin with an insight into how easily it can be distorted. Then we may be able to discriminate between a pretense of letting go and the real thing.

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Picture from Tricycle

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