The Problem of Attachment

“That nothing is static or fixed, that all is fleeting and impermanent, is the first mark of existence. . .Everything. . .is always changing, moment to moment.”  Pema Chodron


What is it in me that hates change?*

My heart aches for the spring flower that will fade in a day.  I create a bouquet of lovely fall branches and immediately dread the moment when it will wilt and crumple.

An infant grasps my finger and I yearn for the soft strength of that moment to last.  I sit with my sister and want to cling to her. Silently, I refuse to let her leave.

I want permanence.  I want stability. I want to know that what I love will continue to be a part of my life. I am terrified of even the smallest loss.

I realize the fallacy in this.  I recognize the problem.

The moment.  The moment.  The moment.  Live in it.  That’s the instruction.

It’s a difficult lesson for me.

The Student

* when I wrote this in 2011 I couldn’t comprehend the amount of change I would see in the following years. Young people dying accidentally. Friends losing their husbands. Suicides. Senility. Near death experiences up close and personal. And Covid-19.  Originally posted  at My Life Class, October 14, 2012 (Modified)


  1. “Let us recognize that engagement and detachment aren’t opposites. The more engaged we become, the more detached we have to be.”

    “Holding onto anything is like holding onto your breath. You will suffocate. The only way to get anything in the physical universe is by letting go of it. Let go and it will be yours forever.”

    ~ Deepak Chopra


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