The scriptures give one major reason for all problems – especially divorce; is attachment.
What is this attachment ?
According to psychologist Mary Ainsworth, attachment “may be defined as an affectional tie that one person or animal forms between himself and another specific one – a tie that binds them together in space and endures over time.” Attachment is not just a connection between two people ; it is a bond that involves a desire for regular contact with that person and the experience of distress during separation from that person.
Mother developing attachment with the kids – they will feel distress on separation.
Husband and wife attached – they will feel distress if they miss each other for a minute.
Attachment may also be confused as love. Love is different and attachment is different. In love you develop a emotion of contentment and happiness – whether you have the object or not. You don’t develop a desire of wanting it again and again. Say, I love my father. Even though he is no more. I can still love him.
In attachment, they will feel uncomfortable without that object or person to which they are attached.
Swami Parthasarathy’s example – Swamiji was called by a CEO of a company to give lectures in his office to all his employees. He was very regularly checking swamiji’s programme for 6 months and finally managed an appointment. Swamiji was pleased by his concern; accepted to give the lecture.
Swamiji could not see the CEO. His personal secretary came and said ” the CEO is unable to attend the lecture because there was a death”. Swamiji felt – oh! no – this fellow wanted the lecture in his office so desperately and he is unable to attend. At the end of the session, Swamiji met the CEO. He came to know that his dog died last evening.
CEO was so attached with the dog he just collapsed by parting it.
People who don’t have attachment will not fall on losses. Even though they might feel sad – will not collapse.
More examples :
- You have bought a vase for your house. You have been wanting it for sometime and finally got it. The kids in the house broke it by mistake. If you have the attachment you will scold the kids and will be talking about it for days. You will keep on warning the kids to be careful and quoting the incident again and again. If you are not attached – you might still scold the kids and ask them to be careful and forget about it.
- In India – most of the women who is doing some pooja are attached to it. If they don’t light the lamp or perform the pooja – they will feel uncomfortable. They will also have the fear that something wrong will happen. Normally, people misunderstand this as bhakti.
- People wearing these sacred threads of all colours – they get so attached to it – that they will never remove it. They have the fear if they part with it ; something wrong will happen.
- Women attached to their house and the habit of cleanliness. There are lots of women attached to the habit of cleanliness They will all the time be cleaning. They will just collapse if someone spills a sauce in the sofa or carpet. They are all the time cleaning and will never allow anybody to enjoy the things. They want the house to be a museum.
- Mother attached to the kids. They collapse once they get married.
- Attachment to wealth and all kinds of possessions.
If we leave this attachment – then we can enjoy the relationship of the spouse or any object for that matter.
How can we leave the attachment?
- Normally, the attachment is passed on by the parents.
- If we read the scriptures automatically the intellect is developed and we will be able to leave the attachment (but still enjoy the objects).
- Non – attachment is different from detachment.
- Some people who are unaware of this – leave all the possessions and take sannyasa. This is not non attachment. You should be possessing it and enjoying it and still not attached to it.
- Scriptures says, if we do what we ought to do and improve the skills required to do our duties. Feel contended. Feel contended and then aspire more and we are in good company of people. We can leave attachment.
- Feeling contended is a very important aspect for developing non – attachment.
- Those who feel contend can only part with things and can appreciate others.
- People having non- attachment are not careless people and who are not bothered about the things. In turn, these people lead a disciplined life and if they lose something ; they don’t collapse.
Typical Indian family
- Women will manage the house and the kids.
- The husband will do his business and earn money for the family.
- Women will independently handle the family. Will never ask the husband – what to cook? How much to cook? Can I wash the clothes? etc. All decisions relating to the house is taken independently.
- The husband also gives full freedom to the wife and will not interfere. He has full confidence on the wife. He believes strongly – even if she makes a mistake – she will correct it based on her experience.
- The wife does not interfere in the husbands business. She has the confidence that the husband is earning for the family. If he denies any expenditure – she understands that he is unable to provide it at that movement and will surely give it; whenever possible.
- They both are available for each other on emergencies.
- If the wife is sick – the husband will do the household work.
- Both of them don’t communicate each move. If the wife calls the husband ; he immediately picks up the phone because she calls only on emergencies.
- When they go to any weddings or parties. They don’t even sit together. He is talking to his friends and she is talking to her family and friends. They don’t miss each other.
- If something happens to the husbands business – the wife will help by doing some extra work.
- As per vedas, if somebody does what he ought to do and improve the skills to do it efficiently. Contended with what they have and follows non attachment – then they will never have problems.
- In the world, the law is very clear. If you do good deeds with good intentions – you will not have problems. Even if you get it because of previous karmas – you will not collapse. You will have the strength to face this.
- This is what is true love without attachment.
- This is the reason for less number of divorse cases in India.
- Women feels tortured – if asked to handle the house single handed.
- Why should I do the work like a labourer. Even I will earn.
- You will do half the cooking and I will earn for half the expenditure.
- The women will cook and the man will stir the dishes.
- They will compare each other all the time as to who is more efficient in house hold work and earnings.
- They will all the time sit together; eat together.
- They will be sticking to each other even if they go to any weddings or parties.
- They both will talk together with their respective friends and will find fault in each others behaviour with the friends.
- On emergencies, both of them are not available for each other.
- The husband is not picking up the wives phone. He is thinking that she is calling to update him about the daily routine.
- Husband going on tour. The husband is calling 25 times from the airport to find out – how the wife is handling the house without him. He is asking how are you? We Indians get a doubt whether the wife is in the ICU – that the husband is calling so many times to enquire.
- The moment they reach anywhere they have to inform each other. Such worry and attachment.
This is no more a western culture. It is coming to India – like a virus.
Division of roles is very important and non interference in others areas is very very vital. This gives freedom for both of them. No attachment. No worries.
The wife will run the house (she does it or employees domestic servants does not matter) and the husband will earn for the living. The wife will not bother about the money and the husband will not bother about the house. They don’t want to prove each other. In emergencies, they will help each other. They will together bring up the kids.
If you are attached to something – you distance them – Rama Tirtha.
Attachment leads to divorse.
Marriage is like a temple
Resting on two pillars
If they come too close to each other
The temple will collapse.
- Even though some women is doing the household and the man is doing his business for running the family. The world will not leave them. Are you not bored of the household work? Why don’t you take up a job ? Ask your husband to participate in household work – otherwise he will become lazy and it will be difficult in old age? Why are you listening to your husband all the time? Is your husband taking all the financial decisions? you need to participate?
- Typical Indian women – please don’t fall a prey to these words. They are somebodies worry.
- What is ; what we ought to do?
- Whatever we think – we should be doing; is our duty or what we ought to do.
- Say as a housewife – I think, I need to cook. This is what I ought to do.
- Someother housewife thinks cooking is unnecessary – they can have a cook. That is what she thinks she ought to do. That is her duty.
- Nobody can define others duty.
- You have to do what you ought to do.
- If you think you need to exercise – then you need to do that.
- Say, we think we need to exercise and we should not eat junk food. Even though we think we ought to do these things we will not do it. Instead, we will never exercise and all the time eat junk food. But, we will insist / expect the family and the world to exercise and eat healthy. This is just an example. Infact, nobody can define others duties.
- Normally, people don’t do what they think they ought to do. But, expect others to do what they think ought to do. Is it fair?
- How can we pinpoint mistakes on others / world when we are unable to do what we think we ought to do.
- Rule 1 : Do what you ought to do.
- If I think – I need to cook. If I don’t know how to cook – how can I cook. So, I need to develop the skills to do the cooking.
- Rule 2 : Develop the skills to carry on what you ought to do.
- Rule 3 : Get contended and aspire more.
- Normally, people care for others, they will all the time enquire about others, they want to know everymove of others, they are all the time bothered about others. They think – it is love. Unfortunately, they are unaware that it is attachment.
- If they do what they ought to do and improve their own personality. Get contended and aspire more. Everything around them will change. They don’t have to care and bother about others.
“The wise are so totally detached,
Pain is for those who are attached.”
He who is overly attached to his family members experiences fear and sorrow, for the root of all grief is attachment. Thus one should discard attachment to be happy.
If a person loves only one other person and is indifferent to all others, his love is not love but a symbiotic attachment, or an enlarged egotism.
To work without attachment is to work without the expectation of reward or fear of any punishment in this world or the next. Work so done is a means to the end, and God is the end.
According to the Buddhist point of view, non-attachment is exactly the opposite of separation.
You need two things in order to have attachment: the thing you’re attaching to, and the person who’s attaching. In non-attachment, on the other hand, there’s unity. There’s unity because there’s nothing to attach to. If you have unified with the whole universe, there’s nothing outside of you, so the notion of attachment becomes absurd. Who will attach to what?”