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  1. What is attachment?  
  2. Attachment is condemned by religion.
  3. How are attachments formed?
  4. The techniques for "managing" our attachments.

What is attachment? It is the energetic bond between a material object and an element within one of our archetypal fields. The material object might be a physical possession, a person, a viewpoint (e.g., an opinion, a belief, etc.), a circumstance (e.g., our occupation, our neighborhood, etc.). The energy which sustains attachment is the same energy which sustains "desire"; it is the energy which is created when spirit "fragments" into dualities (and thus it is somewhat analogous to the energy which is created when an atom is "split" in fission). The "dualities" are two reciprocal archetypes (e.g., Male and Female). This energy is then a bond between those dualities, drawing the two together (as in desire) and holding the two together (as in attachment) until the energy-charge has been resolved.

Attachment is condemned by religion. It creates the same dynamics (and the same behaviors) for which desire is condemned. Parallel to the list in the chapter regarding desire, we can say that attachment focuses our attention upon materiality, maintains our sense of duality, precludes emotional and mental stillness, precludes passionless objectivity, precludes contentment, precludes discipline and control of the mind and emotions, removes us from an experience of "living in the moment," is experienced as a type of pain, and can be viewed as a disruptive influence in a sub-culture which values passivity, complacency, and tranquility. As in the chapter regarding desire, each of these factors can be shown to be a distraction from "religious" ideals but they are actually (1) the natural, innocent dynamics of the material worlds, and (2) part of the spiritual process by which soul learns about its own nature and clarifies its relationship to spirit via spirit's fragmenting into archetypal aspects so that we can study spirit one-part-at-a-time. ("Spirit" is defined as the substance of which soul is composed, just as clay is the substance of which bricks are composed.)

How are attachments formed? Attachments are created when we have an archetypal field whose elements -- thoughts, images, and energy tones -- interfere with the free exchange of energy in our interaction with a material object. For example, an attachment to a person is created via the following process:

  1. We encounter a person for whom we have a desire; i.e., we sense an energy charge which draws us to that person for the purpose of satisfying our need for the type of energy and information that is available from that person.
  2. During the interaction, we attempt to exchange whatever specific energy and information is meant to be exchanged. The exchange occurs through conversation, physical contact, eye contact, and other means. Intuitively, we perform a "matching" process -- matching what we need with whatever she can give, and vice versa (i.e., matching what she needs with what we can give). We sense what is to be said, and what is to be done. If we allow this matching process to occur intuitively, there is an appropriate exchange of particular energy and information. When the exchange is completed, we part company.
  3. However, at some point, we might fail to use our intuition as a guide; perhaps we are simply unable to perceive that "inner voice." Then, instead of responding intuitively to the unique dynamics of this situation, we default to mere "decision-making" on the basis of logic, past experience, and the residual elements in our archetypal fields (which contain a record of our previous encounters with this archetype); those archetypes or constellations (and their dysfunctional thoughts) might include (1) Ego ("I will say some things that will make her believe that I am smart"), (2) Success ("I want to be more successful than my brother in creating relationships"), and (3) Female ("I should be maintaining eye contact, but I can't stop looking at her large breasts"). The encounter is now "polluted" by these alien thoughts, images, energy tones and actions; they are disrupting the exchange of energy and information in that we are, for example, saying comments to impress her (to solicit feedback which soothes our "inferiority complex") instead of the comments which would develop this relationship in this moment (i.e., would aid the purpose of exchanging energy and information).
  4. As a result of these energy blockages, two events occur: (1) the energy which was meant to be exchanged was not exchanged, and (2) we inserted those polluting elements into the fields which corresponded to the archetypes (i.e., we created "karmic residue"). Because of those two conditions, we are now karmically "attached" to this archetypal situation; the unresolved energy in the complexes will continue to bond us (i.e., "attach" us), via the same magnetism-like dynamic of "desire" by which we were originally drawn to the person. However, because our field-elements correspond to archetypes (and not to human beings), our attachment exists only incidentally to this particular person; if we try to escape from the task of learning to respond appropriately (i.e., intuitively) in the archetypal situations which that person evoked with us, we might seek a relationship with someone else -- but the same a-field elements will still be there, and they will lead us compulsively (through the force of their trapped energy) to re-create the archetypal conditions in which those fields were polluted so that we can try again to maintain a link to our intuition during our interaction with the archetypes such that we are generating the particular thoughts, images, and energy tones which facilitate (rather than impede) the flow of energy between ourselves and the person. Our a-field's elements stay with us even beyond death; they are the basis of the visions which are confronted in the "bardo" as described in The Tibetan Book of the Dead, and they are entities whose magnetism-like force is the core around which material precipitates and solidifies into the conditions in which we will be reincarnated for another opportunity to learn about ourselves and our archetypes.

The techniques for "managing" our attachments.  

  1. Parallel to the list for managing desires, we can manage our attachments in the following ways. (Refer to the list in the chapter regarding desires; the following list is shortened, to avoid redundancy. Also, because our attachments are essentially our "karma," we can acquire more attachment-resolution techniques from the chapter regarding karma.)
    • We can accept the existence of attachments (so that we aren't denying their existence and having to fulfill them anyway but in an unaware and compulsive state); for example, we admit that we really are attached or "addicted" to a person, object, or activity. Although we have a natural distaste for the restrictions and discomfort which are inflicted by attachments, we know that they are an essential part of a process by which we are learning about the nature of spirit as represented by the archetypes; we accept not only the process but also the pain itself -- knowing that it is the prod which motivates us to attend to our lessons as we try again to come to terms with the archetypes.
    • We can become more aware of our attachments (so that we are able to manage them more effectively). We recognize attachments by noticing (1) the persistent recurrence of similar circumstances, and (2) our mechanical behavior (i.e., obsessive thoughts and compulsive actions) in response to these circumstances as the static elements of the fields assert themselves. After recognizing the attachment itself, we try to discern:
      • The archetypal core of the dynamics (i.e., the fundamental aspects of life beneath the surface appearances). Which archetypes are dominant in this situation?
      • The field's contents which we have created as a result of our previous encounters with this archetypal situation. Which thoughts, images, energy tones, and actions are we repeating from previous encounters with the archetype?
      • The possibility that we are creating new attachments in this situation due to our inability or unwillingness to be guided by our intuition.
    • We can change the field-elements upon which our attachments are based (by using archetypal field-work). As we struggle with a dilemma in our life, the true struggle is not with the material circumstance itself; the circumstance is merely an overlay (i.e, a "graphical user interface") to the archetypal dynamics. In every predicament, we are coming to terms with archetypes by developing fields whose contents allow a free flow of energy and information to and from the archetypes. If we have appropriate elements in our fields, the contents grant an objectivity and vitality which guide our problem-solving efforts toward a resolution (i.e., the completed exchange of energy and information), and then -- when the cycle ends -- we can truly detach from the circumstance (because there is no unresolved energy to bond us), and we can move on to something else.
    • We can allow attachments to play themselves out (because we realize that they must run their cycle regardless of our resistance to them or our dislike of them). We are attentive to the cycle itself, so that we know when to release that object. We detect the end of a cycle through various means: (1) a message from our intuition, (2) a general sense that we are finished with the object, (3) an awareness that something new has come into our life such that the old object no longer has a place, or (4) the detection that the object is no longer charged with vitality (and thus we feel boredom, or lack of interest, or the degeneration of our interaction into meaningless "habits").
    • We can transcend our attachments through disidentification (so that we can study them objectively). Our true identity lies in the wholistic "soul"; our circumstances (and the material goods which are props in these temporary circumstances) are here only for our education, not for their own sake. While acknowledging the human fact that our thoughts, images, energy tones, and physical possessions are (in a sense) a part of us, we also see that they are ephemeral visitors which we have adopted solely because they facilitate our life at this moment. We can apply this idea to all areas of our life:
      • Our physical possessions. The pleasure which we feel in ownership is due to the pleasurable flow of life-energy toward an object; it is not due to the object itself (except to the extent to which it elicits this flow). If we direct our attention toward this flow (rather than to the essentially lifeless and meaningless object), we find no reason to cling to any particular object; instead, we attend to the energy itself, and we notice only incidentally the object which is currently holding the charge that attracts our attention and energy-flow. In the acquisition of new objects, our intuition can tell us which objects to seek; intuition selects objects on the basis of two criteria: (1) the necessities of human life (e.g., a home, a car), and (2) the need to resolve residual energy of field-elements from previous archetypal encounters.
      • Our "opinions." Viewpoints are not the same as opinions. "Viewpoints" are our temporary perspectives from our position in life at this moment; they are like the changing scenery as we drive along a mountain road. "Opinions" are created when we impose a personal attachment onto an otherwise-impersonal thought; this is now my opinion, and it is a permanent opinion, and it is a better opinion than yours. Although we can defend ourselves when someone else's viewpoint causes circumstances which infringe upon us, we see no reason to fight for our beliefs themselves because they are merely tentative thoughts that we are testing in an archetypal situation while other people are testing their own tentative thoughts. Instead of squelching those people's viewpoints, we can consider these alternatives:
        • We can acknowledge the enjoyment and arousal which we find in the variety and spice which are presented in the potpourri of viewpoints.
        • We can consider the value of every person's viewpoint as a thought which we could adopt and implant into our own archetypal fields to make them more effective.
        • We can respect the right of people to experiment with their own lives as long as they are not hurting us. We observe the ways in which our own freedom of expression is squelched whenever we try to limit that freedom in other people:
          • We are restricting our own life-energy by the distracting attempt to control the other people.
          • We restrict ourselves also by the attempt to control ourselves to make certain that we aren't expressing whatever we have condemned in them while we are simultaneously compulsively driven to do precisely the activity which we have condemned because the condemnation itself is an inappropriate charged thought in the archetypal field corresponding to that activity.

      • Our self-image. As we move from one archetypal situation to another, we need to adopt a different set of thoughts, images, and energy tones in order to maintain the flow there; for example, we obviously have to "change hats" when we come home from our job, i.e., we change from "employee" to "parent." As we constantly change from one circumstance to another, we are more effective if we are flexible in our self-concepts; instead of labeling ourselves as a particular type of person, and thus responding mechanically as that type of person, we can remain aware that all of our traits are temporary and conditional; in one sense, they are who we are (as human beings) -- but in another sense, they are merely field-elements which we have created in our attempt to manage archetypal situations. This distancing (i.e., detachment) allows us to be more creative in our experiments with archetypes; we become a "chameleon," changing our colors to respond to our changing environment -- not in a valueless, "spineless," manner, but instead in compliance with the "value" that the moment's intuition-guided fulfillment is more valuable (for all concerned) than is the rigid maintenance of any particular personal characteristic.
    • We can develop self-discipline. Self-discipline is generally used to shut off our flow of life-energy toward an object; however, used rightly, self-discipline is simply the use of our will to direct our attention and life-energy toward a particular charged object with such intensity that we are not distracted by other charged objects which we will need to confront later.
    • We can savor that to which we are attached (because savoring allows the exchange of energy and information for which this material object came into our life). In savoring, we look for the life within the situation, and we do not block this experience of life through the irrelevant imposition of judgmentalness (i.e., approving or disapproving by standards that someone told us would increase a particular valued quality within us but are instead interfering with the flow of life toward the judged object). We savor the liveliness of the object, even if we do not "like" the object itself.
  2. We accept change and variety in our environment. Some people thrive on change, adventure, stimulation, and challenge in the ever-fluctuating world around them. But, to an extent, change is frightening or otherwise unpleasant, so other people prefer to live in a "rut" of habitual behavior; long after the charge is gone from an object, they perpetuate their involvement with it because they fear the unknown factors which they would have to face if they turned from that object to another. The current object has reached the end of its cycle (i.e., it has released its charge), so the continued involvement is sustained only by the implanting of new thoughts, images, and energy. We see this dynamic in some relationships (and in some social institutions); the love-connection is gone, but the couple stays together in a lifeless drama of role-playing, emotionalism, and neurotic behavior. They are feeding on the energy of their residual charged elements rather than on the renewing energy of spirit. Our acceptance of change helps us to accept the phenomenon of physical "death" (because every change involves the "death" of the prior situation); if we identify ourselves with life itself -- the life which transcends objects, including the physical body -- we are not attached to any particular circumstance (or any particular body), while we enjoy each one as a temporary instrument through which we experience the material manifestations of life's archetypes.
  3. We allow passion and joi de vivre. Religious writers generally describe detachment as a passionless state. But passion is the flow of life-energy in its full expression of physical activity, emotions, energy, imagination, creativity, and soulfulness; our passion for life guides us to that which is highly charged, that which allows us to give and receive the greatest amount of this flow. Because of this craving for life itself, we spontaneously create the field-elements which facilitate this flow -- and, because we are here for the liveliness rather than for the object itself, we easily release (i.e., detach from) objects which are reaching the end of their cycle (and are therefore exuding a diminishing amount of energy), and we eagerly seek whatever new object is charged to intermingle with us. Passion is not founded on materialism (although it expresses itself toward material objects); it is founded on the living spirit which we experience when we are engaged with the particular objects which are charged for us at this moment. (Ironically, in a religious, passionless type of "detachment," we are creating attachments which block the flow of life; we are attached to the limited -- and stifling -- assortment of behaviors and perspectives and thoughts and self-images which seem to exemplify detachment).
  4. We develop resilience. When life strips away that which has reached the end of its cycle with us, we accept a period of grief (which, dynamically, is the painful shutting down of the energy flow toward an object which has been removed from our life). Then we can "rebound" and begin a search for whatever will be our next object of interaction and learning. We peer into our present and future with hope and confidence in our ability to creatively manage our fields in response to the forthcoming archetypes; we are hopeful and confident because we know that we are becoming more skillful in attending to our intuition in each archetypal situation which arises. Our thirst for life is so fervent that we do not waste a moment in the deathly stagnation of regret or bitterness.
  5. We forgive. Forgiveness is the natural process by which we heal from a psychological injury; thus, we do not "forgive" (as a willful act) but instead we simply allow the healing cycle to occur (much as we would allow a physical wound to heal, without undue interference with nature's task). During this period of time, one of our prime responsibilities is to avoid inserting disruptive elements into our fields; after a misfortune, it is too easy for us to fill our fields with intense emotion (particularly anger and fear), images (particularly fantasies of revenge and "how nice my life would have been if this tragedy had not occurred"), and thoughts (which correspond to the anger, fear, and vicious fantasies). However, these disruptive elements will cause additional problems as they attract the material conditions which correspond to them; for example, if the villain is an Oriental person, there is a danger that we might generate hateful thoughts toward Oriental people in general and thus we will pollute the field which corresponds to our relationship with Oriental people such that all future encounters with those people will be ineffective because our dysfunctional elements will block the flow of energy and information which would otherwise occur. In fact, we will continue to be drawn into involvements with Oriental people for this sole reason until we install elements which permit a free exchange. After a psychological injury, our intuition can guide us in our healing -- granting us insight into the cause for the misfortune (which is probably the playing-out of existing charged elements, i.e., the resolution of "karma"), and telling us how we may consciously assist in the healing. (Because forgiveness is a psychological activity, it does not mean that we cannot seek material compensation with regard to the injury; our intuition can guide us in this matter, and it might tell us to "take the hit" and move on because the injury was simply life's harsh way of taking from us an object which we were meant to give but were unwilling to give.)
  6. We strive for the resolution of all of our attachments. Generally, our life is a series of karmic situations -- replays of previous archetypal encounters in which we left inappropriate elements in our fields. (If we believe in reincarnation, we can say that even a newborn infant is confronting elements from previous encounters.) As we learn to manage these situations via the intuitive implanting of life-enhancing elements into the fields, we discharge the energy from the fields -- the energy from this current encounter, and the energy from the previous encounters. Eventually, we have met and honored all of the archetypes in a variety of manifestations; we we can handle every archetypal situation intuitively, energetically, and lovingly. This is spiritual mastery. We are no longer being pulled compulsively into payback situations by the magnetism-like pull of charged elements; instead, we have spiritual freedom to create circumstances on the basis of our creative imagination and our will. But this is a strange sort of freedom; although we are free to do whatever we want, we "freely" choose to do exactly what our intuition suggests, and we apply our imagination and will not to create a loose-cannon world of fantasy-fulfillment but instead we use them to enhance the flow of life-energy into all of our activities. We choose this course because of our love for the life-energy which is cascading through us -- a soulful energy which we recognize in all beings and circumstances.
  7. We develop trust in spirit. This is not blind faith; it is a conscious understanding of the dynamics of spirit. Trust is created when we see that (1) every event in our life occurs for our education into the nature of spirit as depicted fragmentally in archetypes, and that (2) life -- by its basis in dynamics rather than in a personal deity's arbitrariness -- takes care of our needs to the extent that we are part of the flow and we thus we give when we are intuitively guided to give, and we receive when others are similarly guided to give -- or even they refuse to give, and life tears the object from them and gives it to us anyway. Instead of fearing and despising the apparent capriciousness and cruelty of life (particularly when an object is taken from us), we discern that our possessions and circumstances (and the problems which they create) are presented as opportunities to (1) learn about the archetypal aspects of our own self, and to (2) improve the quality of our fields so as to upgrade the quality of our life, through the process which is commonly termed "karma" (which is nothing more than a reiteration of archetypal situations in which we previously implanted inappropriate thoughts, images, and emotions into our fields instead of using intuition that would have guided us to think, do, and say that which would have facilitated the flow of life between ourselves and the objects which were material representations of archetypes). In this trust, we "surrender" -- not in self-negation but in partnership, knowing that our intuition is our communication with spirit, which has the overview and power that can create conditions which are best for all concerned (i.e., conditions which develop from the appropriate mutual exchange of energy and information), with a precision which is impossible from the limited perspective of ego and analysis (which now participate not as leaders but as co-workers). We trust the process "unto death," speculating that perhaps one reason for the death-rebirth cycle (i.e., reincarnation) is that it is the only way by which some of us would ever break out of our life-long habits; death sweeps away our environment (which contains not only the manifestations of our currently charged fields, but also the dull left-over behavioral and conceptual habits which were created during our repetitious attempts to prevail in previous archetypal encounters but now linger as pointless routines); in rebirth, we start fresh in a new setting which is built upon the vigorous framework of archetypal fields which that still need to be explored and resolved.
  8. We love. Throughout this book, the descriptions pertain to energy dynamics, as though this is science rather than religion -- but the information is applicable to religion, and it gives a different perspective on religious concepts. In these dynamics, that which is "flowing" is spirit -- the very real substance of which soul is made, the substance which is ever-moving throughout the worlds -- sparkling its facets as archetypes which we perceive in material form. The unfettered flow of this energy is what we call "loving"; its nature is to nourish, and to share, and to express -- not in a self-conscious effort to display ideas of spirituality, but instead like the water of the Tao whose swirls and twists just naturally carry moisture and nutrients to all in its path. We do not need to learn to love; love is our natural state because of the perpetual current of life-energy from spirit, through soul, mind, emotions, and physical body. As we attend to this flow, as we feel the pleasure and joy which are created when life surges through us, we discover that the pleasure and joy are increased when we clear away the obstacles. Those obstacles are the inappropriate elements of archetypal fields; they are the thoughts and images which judge particular objects to be damned and not loved, and so we try to shut off (i.e., "dam") the movement of life-energy to those objects. Thus, the spiritual path -- in contrast to religion's collection of rituals, rules, theological concepts, and moral principles -- becomes simply this: the intuition-guided creation of archetypal field-elements which facilitate the flow of life-energy to and from each archetypal aspect of spirit as presented to us in material form.


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