The Art of Letting Go
“I’m the wind; blowing past all fields, oceans, mountains, rivers and, past you. I’ll be a serene breeze, or I’ll be a wrecking rage, I may ring a chime for you, or gift you a beautiful perfume, but I must flow. For if I stay, I’ll become an abhorrent stillness.
I’ll come back some day, some time, though you’ll not be the same. If you’ll recognize me, I can not say, if I’ll recognize you is uncertain too, but we’ll meet again. A million essences I embrace, as I flow through a hundred seasons, but yours, I may not forget. I have loved you, and will love you, but I must go on now, to pick up fallen leaves, to whistle in green trees, to help the sailors sail, I must leave now.”
Yes, however painful, this part is the most fulfilling of our journey to bliss. To “let go” of situations, of people, however dear; to let go painful memories bottled up in us. To ‘let go’ of every devil in us disguised as god. And to let in beautiful, brighter experiences and pour in new colors and flavors. Be like the wind, fierce and placid, never too attached, but always embracing everything it meets.
Let us learn from our own example.
An obstetrician would be quite familiar with it, but we all do know how we came into this world. The newborn cries. The cord is cut and he is out of the warm and safe place he has considered his world. I think only if babies could think like we do, they would have yelled “they tried murdering me”. From such a cozy warmth to suddenly the vast space full of sounds and colors and people. So much to take in!
But think, was it possible that we didn’t leave that haven, and yet be born, see so much, feel so much and be what we are? No. We had to let I go.
Dragonflies, beautiful, and one of the fastest flying insects would never have opened their wings for flight if they never climbed above the water surface. When they are larvae, submerged in water, they would wonder what the world would be like beyond their limit. But one of them might have come up to surface, slowly climbing a weed, and its shell would have broken-and it must have took its first flight. But it might have realized later that it can’t go back to where it was and tell others what a beautiful world awaits them. It has to be alone on his path now and enjoy what life offered it. Each must find their own way. See the bitterness and yet the sweetness of letting go?
Learn it from us or by nature, by your own or by others, the art of letting go always paves the path for newer experiences. The womb we came from seemed so fulfilling then, didn’t it? Likewise, our home, within the comfort of our family, our loved ones, within boundaries of promising present and rewarding future, we turn blind to brighter prospective. Only when we breach the boundary of our comfort zone, we will be challenged to strive for better. And only then we’ll move forward. Or else, we become the still wind.
To “let go” has a broader concept. It is not restricted to comfort zones, but reaches out to all those people, memories and situations which are detrimental to us. Most of us might have that one person in life who no matter what hurts us. Despite our unconditional devotion and love, they would never reciprocate it. Be clear, I’m not talking about unfulfilled expectations, but hurt. Many a time in our life we find ourselves in situations which seem to militate against us, treating us like mere puppets. Few memories, however dear come to us as agonizing flashbacks making us relive those moments again and again. And finally, we end up in tears or outraged.
I want you to let them go. Forgive those people for what they have done and let them walk out of your life. Don’t pull them back. Though, at times you may need to push them away. Let them live as they like to. Let go of the turbulent situations. The more you struggle to get out of a mud pool, the more you get into it. Have you ever realized whenever you’re in such a situation, you are not having trouble controlling it, but you’re having trouble trying to control it. Let it flow. The situation will flow past you, sometimes you’ll give a side and sometimes it’ll alter its path. And you’ll realize how smoothly it went by.
Those books of memories in your library, burn them or bury them. Blow the ashes away in your amazing garden or make a beautiful tombstone. And bid them a respectful farewell. Haven’t all the religions taught the same? A respectful farewell to those who leave. Make peace with your memories, accept that it had happened, and it is all past. Don’t cry over what is lost, but smile that you’ve been a part of such a wonderful time.
One of the most vicious figment of human mind-guilt. Guilty? Then I’ll tell you something really good. You feel guilt only because you know, and you accept your fault. Not many of us can do that. You are humble enough. You’ve changed now, and for better, haven’t you? You can’t turn back time and mend broken hearts and undo hurtful deeds. But you can heal. The more you let go of your guilt, the more effectively you’ll heal. You had made the best of your choices back then, with the knowledge and experiences you had. Had you been in the place you are now, you wouldn’t’ have done it. But ever wondered, if you hadn’t done it, would you be in this better place?
Let those chains not hold you back.
Now a little work for you to do.
Who are they who constantly hurt you? Why do they do so?
Do you find yourself in middle of a big problem and you think you’re just not heading anywhere?
Write down, without a second thought, all those memories which keep you from living happily.
Are you so comfortable in your present that you barely accept a challenge or a risk?
Make a to-do list now.
Express yourself to all those people. They may try to change, they may accept your decision, or may violently go against you. Give a chance to those who are willing to change, life is about forgiving, not hard-fast rules. But shut out the rest of them.
Stop trying to make things better. Stop trying to head somewhere. You might be damaging more than you put into place. Accept that things will always be the way they have to be.
And for those memories a nice way I’ve tried- keep a jar or a box and every time you get lost in those memories put in fifty bucks. Say them a hearty goodbye no and every time they come to visit you should say “no, thanks”.
And last, live your life. You’ll have enough time to treasure your comforts.