Learn to Detach


I read a book recently called Tuesdays with Morrie. It is a memoir of a college professor, Morrie, who is slowly dying from terminal cancer. Throughout the book, he shares what he has learned in life with his past student and friend, Mitch, who eventually turns their conversations into the book. Morrie says wise words that only someone on the edge of death could utter. He had lived his life and knew that it would end soon, so he decided to share his learned lessons with the world

One of those lessons is detachment. “Learn to detach,” says Morrie (103). You may be thinking, what is so inspiring about detachment? Or rather, what are we to detach from? He goes on to say: “Detachment doesn’t mean you don’t let the experience penetrate you. On the contrary, you let it penetrate you fully. That’s how you are able to leave it” (103). Morrie had lived a long life and came to the conclusion that some emotions and experiences have to be let go of. We cannot hold onto everything, so we must learn to detach. When a negative feeling comes, we are to acknowledge it, experience it, and then detach from it.

Most things in this life, good and bad, have an ending. If we do not learn to detach, we won’t be prepared when those endings come. During the last months of Morrie’s life, he learned to detach himself. He became content with the fact that he was going to die. Every time he would feel grief or frustration, he would be aware of it and then let it go.

We must view feelings, even negative feelings, as opportunities to learn and make changes in the way we think. Do not forget that there is always a reason for our emotions. Whether they lead us to new discoveries or more passionate experiences, they play a role in how we live life. Therefore, we must not disregard them. Ignoring negative feelings only allows them to grow stronger and stay longer. They will pitch a tent if you let them. Alternatively, if you post a “No Camping” sign, they will leave when night falls. You will be left being fulfilled having felt the emotion fully and allowed the experience to seep into your cracks.

I ask now that you would join me in the effort to be aware of our emotions and to learn to detach from the negative ones. I would also like to encourage you to read the inspiring book Tuesdays with Morrie. It has changed my perspective on many important aspects of life. I know it can do the same for you.

Albom, Mitch. Tuesdays with Morrie. New York: Broadway Books, 1997. Print.



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