Chains of Attachment

A Sufi teaching story tells of the man who visited a great mystic to find out how to let go of his chains of attachment and his prejudices. Instead of answering him directly, the mystic jumped to his feet and bolted to a nearby pillar, flung his arms around it, grasping the marble surface as he screamed, "Save me from this pillar! Save me from this pillar!"

The man who had asked the question could not believe what he saw. He thought the mystic was mad. The shouting soon brought a crowd of people. "Why are you doing that?" the man asked. "I came to you to ask a spiritual question because I thought you were wise, but obviously you are crazy. You are holding the pillar, the pillar is not holding you. You can simply let go."

The mystic let go of the pillar and said to the man, "If you can understand that, you have your answers. Your chains of attachment are not holding you, you are holding them. You can simply let go."

- Dick Sutphen in "The Oracle Within"

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