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Jyotisha Practice

Attachment vs. Detachment

Compassion in Relationships


If another person's pain evokes one's fear of one's own pain, that is sympathy (same-feeling) or pity.

If another person's pain evokes one's skillful caring response without matching energy, that is compassion.

What does compassion mean?

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~~ H. H. Dalai Lama

Compassion is the desire for another to have freedom from suffering.

Love is the desire for another to have happiness.

LIFE IS SHORT

Pema Chodron

When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times

page 141

"Every act counts. Every thought and emotion counts too.

This is all the path we have. This is where we apply the teachings.

This is where we come to understand why we meditate.

We are only going to be here for a short while. Even if we live to be 108, our life will be too short for witnessing all its wonders.

The dharma is each act, each thought, each word we speak.

Are we at least willing to catch ourselves spinning off and to do that without embarrassment?

Do we at least aspire to not consider ourselves a problem, but simply a pretty typical human being who could at that moment give him- or herself a break and stop being so predictable?

My experience is that this is how our thoughts begin to slow down.

Magically, it seems that there's a lot more space to breathe, a lot more room to dance, and a lot more happiness."

Q:

Namaskar.

I have seen people depressed because they are emotionally detached, but for me the condition is reversed. I become depressed when I get too emotionally attached.

Why is it so?

~~ Jai Ganesha.

A:

Good question!

In either case, whether attachment or detachment, one has lost balance. Balance occurs when the inner observer is aware that one is engaged in the active process of creating the outer projections.

The outer projections are thus mirror-images of one's own state of mind, and simply an extension of oneself. One is inherently in control of one's own projections. Due to the organic relationship between mind and the projections no opportunity for losing control.

  • Excessive attachment is control obsession and it is driven by fear of"losing" the projection.

  • Deficient attachment is also control obsession and it is also driven by fear of"losing" the projection.

Fearis a broadcast signal which emits from the reptile brain of the human vehicle. Fear is the inbred human response to the unknown. Fear is an expression of the fiery-nervous-system of the animal body which forms the chassis of the human incarnation during the present era. It is a 'natural' human response to things unknown.

Fear can be reduced by transforming ignorance into wisdom. Emergency response fear is life-saving, since it evokes the innate flight-or-fight pattern. However it is worth questioning in a moment of non-emergency fear just exactly what is triggering the fear factor? Usually fear can be traced to a belief, and the belief itself can be inspected for authenticity.

Healers know that people can have psychological phobias of physical phenomena such as paralyzing fear of spiders or terror of open water, which are not related to genuine threat of annihilation but rather a habitual response to an imbedded trauma. It is just so with habitual fear of loneliness or fear of abandonment. Although perhaps it is an echo-response to a previous trauma (like PTSD) the fear is not correctly matched to the present reality. One fears a phantom. Thus for the conscious person it is worth enquiring *exactly* what is feared? In fact if one"loses " the current project one is empowered to generate a replacement projection, quite instantaneously! Have a look at the phantom and see if indeed this fear of losing control could be replaced with an empowerment to *create* new experiences. The power of creation is innate just as the fear is innate. Creation being a positive energy is always stronger than fear.

Some sages say that Fear is a physical survival response which was designed to assist the Earth-human species during an era when the human race nearly went extinct. It may be hard to believe now with seven billion humans crowding the surface of blessed Mother Earth. But there have been times in the mists of history when for environmental reasons the human species was on the verge of extinction, and those who supervise our beloved planet thought it wise to incorporate

The balanced view of relationships is based in a central commitment to conduct all relationships with compassionate neutrality and awareness that one is, in real time, creating the mirror-image of the partner and creating their behavior. Yes, one is creating the behavior of the partner! It will be beneficial to observe the relationship, and to observe the other human being with whom one is engaged in relationship, with neutral intelligence and appreciation for one's own creative genius.

Relationships and Desires

All human beings participate in relationships with other humans.

Everyone is " hard-wired" with emotional needs and desires. However, it is also known that satisfying the desires does not eliminate the desires. After one desire is satisfied, there are more and more and more desires just waiting to push up to the surface of mental attention.

Next, one will want more money, or a better education for the children, et-cetera. I talked with a man recently who said, he planned to divorce his wife if she did not lose weight. He desired that she should look a certain way, fitting into a certain size of dress.

His desire for control was consuming him, and his fear (which underlies obsessive control behaviors) was on track to destroy his marriage with a very nice woman. It was so sad to watch his desire for control destroying his desire to be married.

BLISS IS LIKE AN EAGLE WITHOUT BOOTS


Fruition Mahamudra” in The Profound Treasury of the Ocean of Dharma, Volume Three: The Tantric Path of Indestructible Wakefulness

by Chögyam Trungpa, page 615

"When you drop your unnecessary things, you finally can swoop and fly in vast space. It is so blue, so bright, and so nice, so airy and fresh.

You can stretch your wings and breathe the air. You can do anything you want.

You have experienced cheerfulness and joy, and finally the bliss of freedom occurs in you.

You are like an eagle without its hat, coat, and boots."

Cycle of Desire (Samsara)

The cycle of desire is virtually endless for normal human beings. (There are some visionaries who have figured out how to end the cycle, e.g., Gautama Budha, but these folk are very rare.) It is permanent and inescapable and yet it is the source of great unhappiness.
LET IT COME IN

You Have to Say Something : Manifesting Zen Insight

by Dainin Katagiri,

p 30

"There was once a teacher who went to see a student who was dying of cancer. She said her heart was screaming, and she couldn't stand it.

The teacher said, Let go of it.” He repeatedly told her to just let go. But she said, I can't let go of it!”

And so, immediately, the teacher said, Then let it come in.”

He understood: it is the same thing. Shortly thereafter, the student died peacefully."

Getting back in balance

The first step toward objectivity in dealing with desires might indeed be depression or apathy or anger (which underlies depression) and apathy, are quite reasonable emotional responses to seeing the reality of the problem. One might be tempted to abandon all relationships, if the feeling of dissatisfaction and unwholeness can be predicted to get worse not better over time.

This realization drives plenty of people into monasteries, where the physical needs for food clothing and shelter can be met without engaging in too many demanding emotional relationships, and people do respect each other's practice.

However normal people will remain out in the world, and we normal people will need to do battle with issues of attachment and desire. For us lay people, even more than for a monk or a nun, the challenge to center our relationships in a perspective of compassionate neutrality is critically important to win.

Depression, Survival Fear, and Fear of Rejection

Depression is the surface expression of repressed anger, and underneath anger there is fear. As one enters a relationship, full of hopes expectations and desires, one also carries forward anger over failures of the past, and underneath that anger is fear of rejection. The fear of rejection is deeply terrifying at the level of the reptile brain.

The old part of the human brain is programmed for basic survival at any cost. Humans cannot live alone. We must live in groups or we will die. We are fragile, inter-dependent beings and we must have contact with other humans.

So, if one digs down through the levels of motivation as to what the **!?** is happening with all of this action-reaction, excess attachment/detachment, it is all being driven by the core fear of rejection , and the fact is that fear of rejection is a very, very deep natural brain process.

Having fear is not a moral failing. Fear is appropriate.

But to be a bit more happy, one might look compassionately at one's own fears. Start by being nice and accepting toward oneself. Consider that, at a deep level, one might be rejecting oneself, perhaps through self-criticism or self-denial.

Start with compassion toward the self.

Then, build outward. Anyone with whom one will enter into a relationship, whether for five minutes during a purchase in a shop, or for a lifetime as a spouse or family member, this person will have their own fear of rejection.

This person will be surging with desires just like oneself, and be negotiating internally, with a complex inner narrative that is talking in their inner ear, just like oneself.

When approaching this person, appreciate that no matter how wonderful that person may appear, it is a matter of fact that this person cannot satisfy all or even most of one's desires. And furthermore, it is a matter of cold fact that one cannot satisfy all or even most of that friend's desires.

Desire is bigger than all of us. Appreciate the limitations on human relationships. Don't go overboard - either retreating from human contact (excessive detachment) or plunging headlong into fantasy of total completion or"redemption" through human relationship (excessive attachment). Both imbalances are crazy-making.

Rather, assume a more compassionate motivation.

Neutral basis of exchange: help and respect

The leading questions when entering a balanced relationship should be,"What do I have to offer this person? How can I assist, without sacrificing my own life force? Do I have a skill or intelligence to contribute?

What can I ask the partner to contribute to me? Do they have a skill that supports and improves my life? Does this person want to enter into exchange with me on this basis?"

  • Compassionate relationships are fair, balanced, and respectful.

  • Relationships based on compassion are less reactive because they are based on a perspective that the other person is not an object to control, but rather a free willed human being almost exactly like oneself.

  • It is especially important to appreciate that one's partners and family members will have their own fears.

Compassion is a powerful tool for dealing with fear in relationships . Our human brains are programmed to contain survival fear, and fear is a permanent part of our lives. But if one can identify and acknowledge the fear in oneself and in another, then one need not react to it. Reaction becomes an option, not an obligation. One can skillfully manage it.

Interrupting the Cycle of Fear and Hurt

BTW compassion is not dull or boring, and it does not take the passion out of relationships!

  • Compassionate folks tend to enjoy their lives and their romances deeply and fully. Compassion provides the benefit of seeing the other person as a complete, whole other person - much less as a projected image of one's own anxieties. Complete, whole other persons are very interesting!

  • The other main advantage of conducting one's relationships with compassion is that one can avoid the depression caused by pain from anger, betrayal, and catastrophic disappointment while retaining most of the good and necessary pleasures of human interaction.


Successful, supportive relationships depend on keeping oneself in balance. Neither too attached nor too detached.

  • The balance point is not in the"relationship" or in the other person.

  • The balance point is in the center of the self.

14th Dalai Lama 1935- Policy of Kindness Tenzing Gyatso . (1997).

A Policy of Kindness: An Anthology of Writings By and About the Dalai Lama

"Question:

A person, particularly in the West, must have the foundation of humility, honesty and an ethical way of life.

Once one has this foundation, what else does Your Holiness suggest that one cultivate in one's life, if there is the foundation of virtue, ethics and humility?


DL:

The next thing to be cultivated is mental stabilization . Ethics is a method to control oneself -- it is a defensive action. Our actual enemy, you see, is within ourselves.

The afflicted emotions (pride, anger, jealousy ) are our real enemies.


These are the real trouble makers, and they are to be found within ourselves. The actual practice of religion consists of fighting against these inner enemies.

  • As in any war, first we must have a defensive action, and in our spiritual fight against the negative emotions, ethics is our defense.

  • Knowing that at first one is not fully prepared for offensive action, we first resort to defensive action and that means ethics.

  • But once one has prepared one's defenses, and has become somewhat accustomed to ethics, then one must launch one's offensive.

  • Here our main weapon is wisdom.

  • This weapon of wisdom is like a bullet, or maybe even a rocket, and the rocket launcher is mental stabilization or calm abiding.

In brief, once you have a basis in morality or ethics, the next step is to train in mental stabilization and eventually in wisdom."

~~ The Book of Job * Iyov 22:28

"In all your designs you will succeed,

and light will shine on your path ."

Q: Congratulations by your site.

I have a question. I´m reading your article about sorcery, black magic, etc. This theme is commonly a coarse/refined way to the perception of subtle realities. In this email i will not discuss about witchcraft, only i can talk about this issue:

You refer a case with a man with Ketu in 7 house, where in this specific case, he has "boundary issues " in relationships.

We can imagine that this man is not adviced, or simply he want to continue in this harmful way to the girl.

What is the way to resolve the problem?

Thank you and blessings to you

A: Abandon all attachment to superstition

In all cases of victimization, it is essential for the victim-person to do two things. (1) Abandon superstition. (2) Accept responsibility (without guilt) for the conditions of one's own life.

These two decisions are required.

If one is in the victim role, it is necessary to abandon ego-membrane attachment to being a victim. Many people endure a great deal of suffering due to their attachment to the victim mind. Like an actor who is offered an interesting theatrical role but he says "no" to the possible role because he does not want to repeat that script, the victim-person should vigilantly refuse to accept the role. This decision happens inside the person's own mind.

No one can change the mind of another person. Each person controls their own mind. Superstition is a lie. Therefore, do not try to change other people. It will not work. Change one's own self. That will work very successfully.

For the man who is the predator, he is building up some nasty karma if he is harming another person. Of course he is ignorant. However the same truth applies. It is not possible to change another person. If you are the observer in this situation, you can decide not to observe it. If you are the parent, you can take rational actions to protect your child. If you are the victim, you can take rational actions to block the predatory invasion of the unwanted energy.

Decision to take responsibility and act rationally

The big struggle is to overcome the irrational habit of believing that other people can control us. This is false. But wrong beliefs to which people are deeply attached can cause a tremendous amount of suffering, even when the beliefs are false. So, in the end, if other people are stuck in a web of ignorance, superstition, and false beliefs, there is not much power available to you to change the other people. Only compassion and selfless service (seva) will help.

Parents must act - but rationally, with clarity and positive intent

Again, if you are the parent of a child who is being victimized, you can accept parental responsibility to do whatever rational action is necessary to protect your child. If you are an adult victim, abandon superstition and accept responsibility then look rationally at what needs to change in one's own behavior. The victim does not know it because of their ignorance, but they are"matching" the energy of the predator (who is also ignorant).

Compassion for the Victim, Compassion for the Predator

The victim can decide to strengthen their protective aura and to ask for help from the community. The victim can decide to take their power given by God to protect the self so that life can be lived to its fullest beauty and intelligence.

The predator with boundary issues can also claim his God-given power to monitor his own behavior so that he will, as a personal decision for life,"do no harm". Even if he cannot find the proper boundaries in social relationships, he can take a religious vow to"do no harm". And he will need to practice this vow very attentively.

In the end, attention to one's own situation, the decision to accept full responsibility for everything which occurs in one's life, and the commitment to express compassion for all other people -- these are the only things that work to improve our lives.

Wishing you best success,

sincerely, Barbara Pijan Lama, Jyotisha

All human beings participate in relationships with other humans. Everyone is " hard-wired" with emotional needs and desires. However, it is also known that satisfying the desires does not eliminate the desires. After one desire is satisfied, there are more and more and more desires just waiting to push up to the surface of mental attention.
Next, one will want more money, or a better education for the children, et-cetera . I talked with a man recently who said that he planned to divorce his wife if she did not lose weight. He desired that she should look a certain way, fitting into a certain factory sized dress.

His desire for control was consuming him, and his fear (which underlies obsessive control behaviors) was on track to destroy his marriage with a very nice woman partner. It was so sad to watch his desire for control destroying his desire to be married.

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all that is true, all that is noble,

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whatever is excellent and admirable -

fill all your thoughts with these things."

~~ Epistle to the Philippians 4:8