A peculiar thing about going to live in a Buddhist centre for a time and not being Buddhist is that, like it or not, you find yourself facing the principle of attachment as you purge your belongings. While it isn’t absolutely necessary to do so, as there are such things as storage lockers, you only have one room in which to live and you have to whittle down what will live with you in that space.
As I go through my “worldly” goods, I am not overly surprised to discover how many items I have that I don’t use. Ever. They sit in drawers, and beneath my bed, jammed hither, thither and yon with the idea that perhaps some day they will be needed. Those items aren’t overly difficult to part with for the most part.
But other stuff…well, I do declare, I am hard pressed to consider it. I am not the biggest materialist in the world, but I have feelings and pretty strong ones, about certain items that I carry with me. And I’m wrestling with how to deal with those and finding it anxiety inducing. It is mind knocking. So much is going on in my life as it is…layer by layer I’m having people, experiences, and goods peeled off of me like sun-burnt skin. We all are. It’s just right now, I’m very aware of this in ways that I haven’t been before.
It’s like smacking your head up against solid matter like thick 2×4’s or builder’s bricks; I am meeting resistance and head injury and the effects are rippling throughout my sensory experience. I am not a karate master…or whatever type of martial arts master breaks the seemingly unbreakable with their noggin, so the discipline required to focus my mind into a pinpoint of energy is duly lacking.
To end, I would like to toss out some questions to you. What do you think you really need versus what you want? How do you know the difference? What are your prized possessions and why are they so to you? If you feel you don’t have any of those, how do you think you got to that point?
And if you had to do as I am doing, go from where you are now, be it house, apartment, condo, townhouse into a single room, how would you feel, and how would you go about the process?
These are just some questions to chew upon. Perhaps they interest you, perhaps not. I am finding it quite worthwhile to explore.