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Throwing stuff out...

Posted: Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:23 pm
by joirye
Hey everyone, I've been de-cluttering the one room in my house where I keep most of my accumulated things. I really want to get rid of a lot of this stuff, but am a little afraid. A lot of the stuff is momentos from my school days...kinda a story about me. The funny thing is I know that it's just my ego clinging to these things because it thinks they define me and give me a past...and by looking at this stuff, I'm just going into the past and forsaking the present moment- double whammy! :lol:

I'm trying to look at each momento and ask "What is my motivation for keeping this?". The answer is always ego based. However, I'm afraid it might be a mistake to trow this stuff away...but then again, it might be liberating. Oh, I don't know! :? I think I'm just gonna trash it...what do y'all think? :?:

Perplexed
~Joi

Re: Throwing stuff out...

Posted: Thu Dec 04, 2008 11:55 pm
by nili
Dear Joi,

For me it was a great exercise for really noticing the attachment to small things and memories.
As these things accumulate they end up owning YOU! I know people who would like to relocate but won't do it because shipping all their stuff would be too complicated and expensive.

One (sad) event which made me reflect a lot about this issue was the fires in California. I remember people on TV crying for having lost all their stuff overnight. That made me think about my stuff. What thing would make me weep if lost? the more i thought about it, the more i realized that nothing is really that important to keep forever....it's all mental attachment.

Another tricky issue is presents.... does a present from someone mean i have to drag it around with me, wherever i go, for the rest of my life?? hell no...

An even trickier issue is family heritage things being passed on (grandpa's clock, great grandma's school books). These things keep on passing from a box in one attic to another box in another attic. It made me wonder...should i consider the act of giving me such items an act of kindness? or, as "yet another responsibility" put on my shoulders. I started seeing it as the latter. Each new item becomes a chain with a weight at the end.

Seeing things from this perspective made me think that many people should be happy for losing their stuff, for many chains have been cut for them.

This in turn made me realize that i CAN be strong enough to cut these chains myself to be free, i don't need a fire.
kinda die before you die.....

just some thoughts from the spiritual journey.......


Nili

Re: Throwing stuff out...

Posted: Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:21 am
by domokato
Just the other week I threw out all kinds of stuff that was taking up space in my parents' garage. Stuff from college, and some stuff from before then. Most of them had some sort of sentimental value, which I recognized as ego and trashed them anyway. It was liberating, and I also found some treasures. Like an eyeball toy, which my puppy found delightful, and an R2D2 keychain digital clock which was still running after 10 some years! We kept that just because of the awesomeness factor. My sister also found her old tamagotchi. She's trying to bring it back to life so she can have a pet :). Oh, and we found this fisheye periscope, which was totally awesome cuz you could see in all directions at the same time. Trashed that though :lol:. Useless.

Re: Throwing stuff out...

Posted: Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:31 am
by bjornclausen
Hi Joi!
This is tricky business. Let's say you throw the stuff out and find that very liberating - a new self image might arise that says - I'm not attached to meaningless junk anymore, I have transcended that level. That's all very good ... for you ... but what about people you know that are still attached to junk? There will still be separation and therefore ego ... maybe even a spiritual ego. A much more advanced version. I suggest you keep everything and open up to the beauty and magic of every single item. There is no stuff. There is only spirit .... appearing as stuff.

Björn
http://bjornclausen.blogspot.com

Re: Throwing stuff out...

Posted: Fri Dec 05, 2008 3:03 pm
by Glycine
Don't throw away the stuff that you still care about - your ego will just transform into something else.
You can throw it away when you become aware/present enough to not care about it.
Meanwhile, try not to collect more "stuff" - keep it to a comfortable minimum.

Re: Throwing stuff out...

Posted: Fri Dec 05, 2008 4:11 pm
by joirye
Glycine wrote:Don't throw away the stuff that you still care about - your ego will just transform into something else.
You can throw it away when you become aware/present enough to not care about it.
It's funny, once I read this I realized that I really don't care about this stuff. Only my ego glinging is stoping me from throwoing it away, and now that I fully realize this it seems natural to move on. Thanks!

~Joi

Re: Throwing stuff out...

Posted: Fri Dec 05, 2008 4:19 pm
by joirye
nili wrote:For me it was a great exercise for really noticing the attachment to small things and memories.
As these things accumulate they end up owning YOU!


nili,

I agree whole-heartedly with everything you said- especially the statement above. This is the reason I want to get rid of a lot of stuff...I feel so cluttered and unorganized. At one point it seemed like these things owned me, but I'm starting to wake up and realize the true nature of attachment. :P It is all mental attachment...which leads to suffering. Thanks for your reply!

~Joi

Re: Throwing stuff out...

Posted: Fri Dec 05, 2008 4:36 pm
by joirye
bjornclausen wrote:Let's say you throw the stuff out and find that very liberating - a new self image might arise that says - I'm not attached to meaningless junk anymore, I have transcended that level. That's all very good ... for you ... but what about people you know that are still attached to junk? There will still be separation and therefore ego ... maybe even a spiritual ego. A much more advanced version. I suggest you keep everything and open up to the beauty and magic of every single item. There is no stuff. There is only spirit .... appearing as stuff.]
Wow, I haven't thought about it like that...very interesting observation. :) I will be watching out for this...I could definitly see this happening to me if I'm not present and observant. I don't think I'm going to keep the stuff though. One of the big reasons for this is because my husband's in the Air Force and we will probably be moving a lot....the less stuff to worry about the better. I also feel a need to say goodbye to the past and move on...going through all that old stuff and getting all nostalgic probably isn't the most productive thing to do, when it comes to practicing presence and lessening my egos grip over me. I dunno, I just feel like it's the next step, kinda. Thank you for you insight!

~Joi

Re: Throwing stuff out...

Posted: Fri Dec 05, 2008 7:17 pm
by domokato
Nostalgia is a wonderful feeling. Just as long as you don't let it control you :)

Re: Throwing stuff out...

Posted: Sat Dec 06, 2008 9:19 pm
by letitgo
Hello Joirye,

My wife gave me a great tool for what to pitch out and what to keep several years ago when we had to move. I had accumulated twenty years worth of antiques and junk all in one big office/den, and I wanted to keep it all! She basically suggested holding each piece a moment while I was packing, and ask myself if it made me feel heavy or light. The stuff that made me feel light went to our new home, and the other stuff went to an auction. I couldn't believe how much of my stuff "didn't" make me feel light! (I made a ton of money selling the heavy junk at the auction too).

Sincerely, Norm