The young stay with their parents during their first summer, then of course, the parents let them go to forage by themselves, and eventually raise their own families. Sound familiar?
Family is on my mind. Busily and happily I baby proof the house as much as possible, I shop for the foods I think are their favorites, I clean and scrub until even Mr. Clean would be out of a job, and I cook ... as best I can. The kids, which I lovingly call my daughter, her husband and the baby, are visiting. I'm in a festive mood anticipating the enjoyment of seeing all of baby's newest antics and spending quality time with the little family that brings me so much joy.
My mind, which is rarely at rest, has begun to ponder: "Isn't this one of your biggest attachments?" it asks, trying to elicit some guilt or closely associated feeling of ...what? What ever happened to seeking detachment, to living in the moment? Here you are day dreaming about all the fun you're going to have in the future, and what's more you are definitely, hopelessly attached to those ordinary people you consider so special." It has been said before, the mind is a dangerous thing.
I don't associate with any particular religion, but as a philosophy, Buddhism resonates within me. It seems to echo, or I guess, I echo many of its teachings and detachment is a major one. Yet, I am attached to my family and do not foresee that I will stop any time soon, mostly because I'm not sure I want to.
I love loving my family. I think the love I feel for the Kids, comes closest to anything I will ever be able to call true, unconditional love. I strongly suspect I am not alone. I watch my daughter tend to her baby boy, often with disregard for her own physical momentary needs. I read "mommy blogs", mostly to remind me of the days that once were, and I notice that the love these Moms feel for their little ones filters through their words, regardless of their chosen topic. Their love is in the spaces.
Attachments cause our suffering. No need to tell parents that. But if enlightenment is the achievement of "no self" then perhaps parenthood, in any form, may be a great path towards that goal. I have never experienced a more selfless love. And though I am still attached, I must give myself credit for at least following the natural progression of life, which is indeed a gradual letting go... of everything.
I did let my little one go to school. Sadness overwhelms me when I think of the tiny hand that I reluctantly released, to touch the world alone, without me. It was the preview of all the letting go of her that I would have to do throughout my life, until I realised I can't. For now, at least, I won't.
I hope I'm right...that parenthood is a good path towards enlightenment. Buddha is said to have returned to his family, after leaving them to seek and find his Truth. I've never heard that he was spiritually demoted for going back to loving them.
Clearly, I have much still to learn. There is a demarcation that differentiates between love and attachment. Sadly, I am no Boddhisattva (enlightened being). Enlightenment may come some day, but in my present moment, I'm soooooooo happy my Kids are coming and I'm proceeding with the preparations.