To understand detachment more fully Tosha Silver is a master teacher, and my sensei! Her most recent book, It’s Not Your Money, is about
releasing our attachment to money, freeing ourselves of fear around finances, and offering everything, not just money, to a Higher Power (Source, God/Goddess, Universe, Divine, whatever Higher Power you know).
What is detachment?
Maybe it’s easier to start with the question, “What is attachment?”
We can all relate to this one. We know what it is to be attached to something, to deeply desire a particular outcome. We want something. We go after it with gusto. We do not get the outcome we were expecting, and we feel like the Universe is holding out on us, or we got cheated out of our prize. If we are in a long term relationship that suddenly ends, we may feel angry or depressed because we expected a different ending to the story.
If we are attached to something we cling to it. We try to force the outcome we want because we WANT it, and think that we can only be happy if it turns out the way we have imagined it.
We can think of attachment as a clenched fist trying with desperation to hang on to something slippery. We might manage to hold on, but the energy it costs can drain us entirely. So then, we can think of detachment as the gentle opening of that clenched fist.
Detachment is the release that causes relief. It’s the art of allowing, the act of surrendering to faith in the Universe.
The more we are able to release our attachment to a particular outcome, the more opportunities become available for the Universe to flow abundance to us. This doesn’t mean we can’t have preferences. I’m talking about being able to hold your preference while releasing attachment to the outcome.
Let’s say Sally wants a career shift that allows her more flexible hours, better benefits, increased income, and the opportunity to work with some wonderful people. If she becomes focused on one particular position as the answer to her prayers, she might miss other opportunities that are a better fit. If she is looking only at one possible outcome, she might not recognize the perfect thing when it pops up because it doesn’t resemble what she’s looking for.
On the other hand, if she is open to receive what she wants without demanding that the Universe deliver it in one particular way, the Universe will deliver by amazing and miraculous methods.
The Universe knows what we truly desire and will do everything in its power to deliver that to us as long as we don’t hamstring it into producing only what our own human mind can conjure. The Universe has infinitely more ideas for how to give us what we want than we could possibly dream!
If we believe that our only source of money is our current job, then the Universe can only deliver money to us through our current job. If that paycheck goes away, it’s understandably going to produce some fear because we don’t currently believe in any other source of income.
If, on the other hand, we trust that the Universe has more sources of money than we can imagine, and we believe that the Universe (Divine Source, or God) will supply our every need, now we open ourselves to miracles. Now the Universe delivers support in myriad ways, large and small, expected and unexpected.
If you are determined that your next salary MUST be X dollars, you close yourself off to both higher paying jobs, and positions that offer less money now, but are the springboard to your dream job.
Often times we do not move forward into the infinite abundance that the Universe is flowing to us because we have anchored ourselves to something from the past. If we are weighed down with guilt or shame from our own actions or the actions of others, we cannot receive all the gifts the Universe is wanting to deliver. This situation is like casting ourselves as the cartoon dog tied to his dog house. We find that what we desire is right in front of us, and we could easily reach it if what’s behind us weren’t holding us back.
How do we detach?
Some things, like income, feel pretty important to hang on to. So how do we begin to loosen our grasp and release our fear of the unknown?
Take a deep breath! Breathing is always my starting point. Taking a deep breath grounds me in the present moment where I am free of any guilt or shame from the past, and free from any worries about the future. When I am present, the past and future do not exist. So I always encourage my clients to start with a deep grounding breath or three.
Often I feel my physical body release tension with just this one simple step, as if my entire physical structure had been HOLDING ON to whatever I am currently grasping for. Then I open my hands (sometimes subconsciously they are clenched closed) and I offer the whole thing to intuition.
Intuition comes from Source Energy (God, Goddess, Inner Being, Higher Self, whatever Divine Source to which you adhere or relate), so offering my desire to Divine Self releases my small self (ego) from trying to run the show.
Here’s an example from my life.
Last Friday after meditation I opened my eyes and felt a new,
full-blown desire erupt in my heart. “I want a puppy!” I heard my heart say to me. Since it was flush on the heels of quieting my mind, I accepted it as wisdom from Source, and I ran with that desire along the well-worn path of “How do I make this happen?” I am, after all, a make-it-happen kinda girl. For about 24 hours I chased after my puppy. I did the research. I contacted my vet for costs on puppy shots. I looked into fees at spay clinics. I Googled dachshund breeder websites, and dachshund rescue sites. It may have been the initial sticker shock that put a hitch in my vibration.
Nine years ago I purchased the world’s most adorable dachshund for $400. BEST money I ever spent! Captain Boscoe P. Jenkins is the joy of our lives.
Little boys have doubled in price since then, and girls are higher still! Which makes complete sense. What hasn’t increased in price in the last nine years? Add to that the fact that I started trying to figure out how Boscoe’s precious life will be impacted and suddenly I got hooked into trying to figure out HOW I was going to get my puppy.
I felt slightly frustrated and a little irritable because I know exactly what I want – a female dachshund less than 6 months old with short hair who adds as much joy to our lives as Boscoe does, whom Boscoe adores, adopts as his own, and enjoys playing with. And I feel in my heart that she is moving toward us. But trying to figure out HOW to get her, and WHERE she will come from, and HOW to afford adoption fees, and all the rest felt like my whole body was grasping, contracting in, pressing down on my heart, depriving me of blood & oxygen, and stopping the flow of my puppy moving toward me.
Then I laughed so loud!
In my excitement, I had completely forgotten to offer my puppy to Divine Order. After all, if the Universe wants me to have her (and I firmly believe the Universe does), Divine has already chosen the perfect puppy for us and will deliver her in the exact right way. It’s NOT my job to figure out the details. So I took a deep grounding breath and offered the situation to Divine Source. I said something like, “Divine Mother, I have a deep longing to have the joy of another puppy in our home. I know You have selected exactly the right puppy for our family and will deliver her with ease at the exact right time. I release my need to make this happen in my own way, and trust You to handle everything.”
My body unclenched, and my heart opened, and instantly I felt the joy of getting a new puppy again instead of the dread of not knowing how to get her!
You could rightfully point out that I am still attached to the idea of a female. The reason for that is Boscoe’s preference. He gets along much better with girls than with boys. Then again, I guess if there is a boy puppy out there that is perfect for Boscoe’s playmate, God will certainly know how to find him!
Do I have my puppy yet? No. But that’s only because it’s not the perfect time. I feel relaxed and comfortable waiting for Source to deliver in whatever way is best, because if I keep grasping and grabbing and forcing MY timing and MY will, I’ll likely end up with someone else’s puppy! She won’t be the perfect puppy already lined up to be Boscoe’s little sister. Offering it hasn’t instantly delivered the manifestation.
The gift in offering is that I can focus on what I want – the joy of a new puppy – and not all the unknowns that may cause stress and dis-ease.
Ironically it is only when we stop grasping for what we want that it is able to flow to us. We’re no longer blocking it from coming with our contracted energy.
How many stories have we heard of women who desperately want a child, who try every possible option to get pregnant, and go through painful fertility procedures, who end up feeling heartbroken if all of that effort doesn’t give them their child. It’s usually when she gives up and moves her attention to something else that she finds herself suddenly a mother to someone else’s child, or unexpectedly and delightedly pregnant herself.
The Lord works in mysterious ways. Truth is stranger than fiction. That’s because Source (your intuition) is Infinite Intelligence. Our limited human minds can’t think up a fraction of the possibilities available to Divine imagination! And it baffles our minds and drains our energy when we try.
Faith is a muscle.
Like any muscle, faith requires strengthening to perform optimally. As you begin to practice, don’t offer the BIG question that you have been struggling with the most. Your faith might not be strong enough yet. If you try to offer the BIG question without practicing on small stuff first, you may naturally revert to old thought patterns and decide it’s not working and give up. Practice on the small stuff first.
Practice offering by letting go. Try letting go of a disagreement with someone. As you realize you are about to correct them or their behavior, surrender it to Divine and just let it go. Remember, their behavior is not your responsibility, so just give it back to Source. You may well feel a huge burden lifted as you release this need to tell them how to act.
Let go of the worry of not knowing something you want to know. If you have a question about something that you can’t currently find the answer for, offer that to Source. You can offer anything and feel the sweet feeling of relief for not being responsible to figure it out. Trust that your intuition will guide you when action is required, and until then, just chill!
Tosha’s books are full of myriad prayers of offering for virtually every situation, and stories of how letting go and having faith delivered the perfect answer to one who had been striving, then let go and offered it up to a higher power. I highly recommend all her books for building the faith muscle and uplifting the spirit.
How would it feel to just let go and have faith that whatever you are currently going through is going to turn our for your highest good,
and you have zero responsibility for figuring out how that’s going to happen?
How much energy would that free up for you?
What in your life are you currently struggling to maintain control over?
What’s it costing to cling to that?
What will it take to release your grasp just a little?
What will change for you when you do?