Call it Lov­ing De­tach­ment

The Economic Times - - Breaking Ideas -

Sim­ply put, hap­pi­ness is sat­is­fac­tion of mind. How­ever, dif­fer­ent in­di­vid­u­als have dif­fer­ent per­cep­tions of how to achieve hap­pi­ness. For some, hap­pi­ness lies in wealth; for oth­ers, it is in rank and po­si­tion; yet oth­ers find hap­pi­ness in fame and name. In their quest for ‘hap­pi­ness’, in­di­vid­u­als tread a path that de­stroys the in­ner good in­stincts and virtues. Crav­ing for ma­te­rial wealth begets greed, lead­ing to cor­rup­tion. Sim­i­lar is the out­come when pas­sion for power drives one’s mind.

Maya im­pels in­di­vid­u­als to be­lieve that ma­te­rial achieve­ment is the truth of life; fu­elling at­tach­ment to worldly pur­suits and sen­sory plea­sures. Grow­ing at­tach­ment breeds ad­dic­tion to ma­te­rial at­tain­ments. In turn, such ad­dic­tion in­tox­i­cates the hu­man mind, mak­ing it obliv­i­ous to the truth. So, real hap­pi­ness re­mains a mi­rage. Ma­hasid­dha Naropa, the 10th-cen­tury ma­hasid­dha of the Kagya School of Ti­betan Bud­dhism, was born in a rich and pow­er­ful fam­ily. He re­nounced his fam­ily and wealth at the age of 25 to be or­dained as a monk-scholar in Na­landa Univer­sity where he be­came a lead­ing scholar and re­spected fac­ulty mem­ber. He later left in search of a guru to at­tain mok­sha and found Tilopa, one of the four ma­hasid­dhas of In­dia.

Once, Tilopa handed a string full of knots to Naropa and asked him to un­tie them. Naropa did so and gave the string back to Tilopa. Tilopa threw the string away and asked Naropa what he un­der­stood. Naropa replied that all be­ings are tied by worldly at­tach­ments and they need to un­tie them­selves.

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