Letting go of preferences


I’ve noticed that a lot of suffering in my life stems from resisting the way things are, and fighting life at every turn. The way through this for me is to be present in the moment and respond as the situation requires without attachment. I have many preferences – ways I want life to be. When life doesn’t line up with my preferences there is upset and I resist life, which only leads to more suffering.

Sometimes what is required in responding to a situation of life as it requires is not easy. “Without attachment” does not mean living without emotion or one’s humanity. The “without attachment” part is a recognition that peace and well-being are ultimately not the byproduct of what unfolds in our circumstances. Life is a continuous stream of alternating experiences that are “positive,” “negative,” or “neutral.” Life is change and is characterized by impermanence and is not going to consistently line up with our preferences.

Consider the possibility of letting go of all your preferences of how you want this day to go. Consider it a profound spiritual practice to be present in each moment and simply responding to the situation as it requires without attachment. Recognize that at the deepest level you are not separated from peace and well-being – that these are not realities outside yourself that you must attain but are knit into the fabric of your fundamental nature and essence.

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