Have you ever felt so free that nothing at all could tie you down? So liberated that even an eagle would feel insecure about its flight?
And, have you ever felt so stuck in a rut, and felt convinced that there can be no way out? That everything was doom and gloom?
Yes. It happens. If you’re human, it seems that both scenarios are very common in this colourful little life. Recently it dawned upon me, that amidst all our misery and sorrows, the root cause is very simple. Although I said it is all due to expectations, which it is, but there can also be another aspect to it. In our lives, there is this intense need and belief that we must hold on to things, people and situations. Our ego or sense of individuality, always craves a sense of belonging, we wish to own things or even belong to people.
But life has a life of its own, and so do people and things. Everything in life is essentially impermanent, but in reality this sentence is solely intellectual knowledge. It makes little sense until, yes until, we delve a little deeper. Only then do we realise that there’s nothing to hold on to and letting go is liberating. Everything fades away over time, or life transitions towards better days. In fact, I think that this is exactly where faith comes into play. A sense of freedom and the desire to let go dawns upon us when we gain the understanding and belief that the Divine is solely operating for our own spiritual progress. The knowledge that whatever it is, the Divine is aware of everything, He is the eternal witness in our lives.
At the end of the day, can we really hope to hold on to the sun, the breeze, love, water in a river? Of course not! Because we would be fooling ourselves. And the same applies to everything, because in essence all things are similar in nature, yet our minds differentiate and come to the erroneous conclusion that we can hold on to situations, people and circumstances. We desire permanence, especially when things are going in our favour, but we do not realise the freedom we could gain in letting go.
And how can we let go? By consciously trying! If we try to convince ourselves that whether we let go or not, we cannot control other people or situations. So, we might as well take a leap of faith and let go, with the knowledge that we are taken care of. Swami beautifully expounds on letting go here, here and here.
Here’s a little tip:
When we are engrossed in the misery of the mind, sit down and have a chat with the Higher power/God/Yourself. Or to Swami (let me give Him some more work, because why not …) As you go through this exercise of Divine contemplation, we realise that we can just go with the flow when it comes to things which are out of our control. The Divine is unfolding our lives exactly as it should be and we are exactly where we ought to be, as Swami said in one of His posts.
When we think back and contemplate on all the attempts we made to save relationships, keep people in our lives or struggle to make situations roll in our favour, it becomes easy to realise we can let go of control. And that the real misery is in trying to hold on to things constantly. Control becomes exhausting in the long run and eventually, life will always give us exactly what it has decided to. We are always handed exactly what we require for our spiritual growth.
Have you noticed that people who are meant to stay would have stayed without our nagging and control anyway? There is always a sense of freedom in such relationships. Through this analysis a deep sense of understanding arises. We realise that God has and will put us exactly where we ought to be. The moment we let go of what we are trying to hold on to, our happiness is back in our hands, and that too in a body of a wiser person.
If you have ever tried to hold on to an object for too long, you must have noticed that it becomes very tiring after a while. When we let go, we may lose something physical, but in reality we gain much more – we gain immense freedom to be however we wish to be, including a nobody!
So, are you holding on to that brownie? Go on, give it to me, let it go – you will feel free:)
And just for fun here is some Frozen treat, no not ice-cream, just the let it go song! Quite some wisdom in these Disney movies I tell ya!
P.S: I always loved Olaf:)