“It is not the outer objects that entangle us. It is the inner clinging that entangles us.”
– Lama Surya Das, Awakening the Buddha Within: Tibetan Wisdom for the Western World
In our lives today, we are busy, toxic, and weighed down by stress, anxiety, and disease. I am finding I feel a bit off these days. I am treating my symptoms rather than getting to the reason why I am feeling that way. I am currently writing a detox program for my yoga studio and have begun the elimination process in my diet and in my life. I am often surprised about my attachment to foods and other things in my life that create imbalance, and I am working with the practice of Vairagya, or non-attachment. I am starting to feel healthy, both mentally and emotionally, after an especially long and trying few years and very intense 6 months. I am able to connecting to my self-awareness and intuition now that I have found some sort of routine and balance to my very inconsistent life. My personal alarm system is going off, and I am satisfied because-what time a year is better than now to detox and declutter!
A few weeks ago, I was chatting with my friend, Bennet, and said, “I feel really off… I feel inflammation and swelling in my joints, and my bowel movements are not regular. I am retaining water and some weight, and I feel overly sensitive and emotional. I am tired and drinking caffeine to keep going. I hate feeling like this.”
He looked at me and said, “Everything might be finally catching up with you, Kamie: the changes in your life, the inconsistency in your routine and lack of closure. Your body has been on survival mode, and now it is time to move on and find a new way to live.” What would I do without my friends to point out the obvious?
I know that I have been doing this in bits and pieces as I feel comfortable. Spring is here, and I have to detox and clear out, pushing me out of my comfort zone. As my dad would say, “Shit or get off the pot.” This cleanse will happen in all aspects of my life. Not only my physical body but mentally and emotionally. I feel the need to embrace a new beginning. Spring is a great time to follow the rebirth and change of Mother Earth and start over.
Over the last week, I have begun by eliminating foods out of my diet one by one. This is not an easy process. I am a “foodie.” I love to cook and eat great food. I was at the Wedge Co-op the other day, drooling over the cookies and sweet treats that I have so often indulged in the past. It’s my attachment to food. I have been working on non-attachment or vairagya, in all aspect of my life. Nothing is permanent, even a detox. I laughed to myself as I took a deep breath and walked away.
“Detachment is not giving up the things in this world but accepting the fact and to be continuously aware that nothing is permanent.” – Aditya Ajmera
Back in September 2015, before my ex returned from Afghanistan, my mother-in-law and I cleaned out the house. I threw away and donated loads of possessions from my life that I no longer needed. I wanted him to come home to a clean and clutter-free environment so that we could start over and begin our new life together. Needless to say, he didn’t notice. Now looking back, I am so happy that I took this time to down-size and release attachments to my past. I need that to start over and create the practice of vairagya. If I hadn’t, I would have so much more to go through and move. I continue slowly going through my past life. I now have to scale back considerably, and for the first time in my life, I am really starting from scratch. My office has been moved to the studio, and room by room, all of the things that was once ours is now his or mine. Nothing is permanent, not even the life and love from which I so intensely clung.
Objects can produce attractions that can lead to attachments. The attachment grows into a craving; these cravings create an accumulation and stagnation in life. It creates attachment to possessions that doesn’t bring true happiness. Most often we define ourselves with the stuff that we have and the stuff that is around us rather than the quality of life that we live. In my loss, I discovered that I am a strong and independent person who has an amazing life. I have decided to live my life to the fullest with a deep appreciation for my experiences, my friends, and my adventures! Cheers to new beginnings and impermanence!