I came across this word 'Anasakti' (अनासक्ति) many times while reading translations of Bhagavad Gita or commentaries about it, even one can find mention of this word in general reading stuff about Hindu religion or Indian mythology. This term has been used in many ways to describe detachment or non-attachment from worldly pleasures or bonds. Generally most people misunderstand it as 'aversion' but according to me it's not aversion even though it's very similar to it. Actually aversion is also one form of attachment, it's a negative attachment, some one is attached to wealth and other person is attached to renunciation of wealth, so both are strongly attached with some feeling (either affirmative or negative towards same thing). One is running towards wealth and other one is running away but both are running, they are performing same action but in opposite direction. We can call one as a positive attachment (that is running towards something) and other as negative attachment (that is running away from something) but both are sort of attachments according to me.
That's why I think 'Anasakti' or non-attachment is totally different stage than aversion, it's not a attachment for sure but it's also not aversion, I think it is the stage where you don't get affected by attachment or aversion (love or hate), where you act as a mere spectator no matter what is the situation. Wealth or no wealth person behaves same, he/she is neither addicted to sex nor hate it, no matter what food they get they enjoy it (as long as it's edible and safe). Wearing saffron clothes, leaving all worldly pleasures or abandoning home doesn't make a person non-attached but he/she gets to much attached with the feeling of rejecting everything. 'Sakti' (सक्ति) means compulsion, some thing one is forced to do or follow, like rule of law or some dictator's commands, there is no choice one had to follow it whether like it or not, but 'anasakti' means non-compulsion, life of free bird, life without any compulsion. It sounds really simple and many be one can argue that it's easy to live life without any control (where one can do whatever he/she wants) than life of control but life without compulsion doesn't mean life without any control or wayward life, it means life without any desires, without any feeling of hate or love. Basically hate or love are the two most dominant feelings which control our life, our all feelings or actions are result of either one of these two or mixture of both these feelings in different proportions.
The meaning of 'anasakti' sounds very simple but I think it's very difficult to practice, it's not easy to detach ourselves from everything (whether we love or hate those things), we can see that even people who claim to be detached from worldly pleasures and declare themselves gurus or sanyasis are strongly attached to their own God (many refuse to accept this as a form of attachment) or beliefs or faith, they are so attached to these things that they almost repel all other things and then feel happy about it. This so called detachment of many people is very superficial and just for show, in real sense everyone is attached to something no one is completely detached with everything. Getting attached to something comes very naturally to humans, we are born that way that's why we need to take lot of efforts to detach our self from anything, let it be anything (our own ego or any thing which we love or hate). Aversion is comparatively easy, it's easy to reject things which one doesn't like, to love something or somebody very passionately is also not that difficult, but to detach completely from something without any emotion (love or hate) is not that easy, but if we can do it, then nothing like that. Total detachment or non-attachment has an potential to make our every act selfless and enjoyable, we can act without any expectation or frustration. I know that it's not possible to do it for everything but we can try to do it whenever we can and slowly learn to practice it, I personally felt very happy whenever I can act like this. Feeling of love is very beautiful and one of the most essential part of being a human but sometimes it can also create a problem and we all agree that anger and hate are not good for us so it will be great if occasionally we can make our self free of all these feelings and act like a free spirit, I think it will be cool let me know what you think.
Thanks for reading and please share your views on this topic.
(Copyright: Vinay Thakur. Please contact the author for re-posting or publishing)