Nonattachment vs Detached

Nonattachment and Detached. Seemingly similar words with completely different meanings. We will explore the story behind each word and how they relate to each other, while somehow still representing opposing philosophies. Not much fluff in this one, here we go!


Lately it is almost a buzzword amongst the people between ages 18 and 35. What most refer to as nonattachment is actually acting detached. You see, nonattachment is a practice, not a behavior. What’s the difference between a practice and a behavior? A practice is almost certainly a conscious effort to work toward some eventual goal. What is the goal? Peace of mind. That is what nonattachment is all about.

We are not running around willy nilly, attempting to find happiness in all sorts of substances and experiences, and then labeling our fickle behavior as “nonattachment.” No, that wouldn’t be correct. So then what is a behavior? And how does it differ from the practice we speak of?


Acting detached is a behavioral pattern that comes from a lack of awareness and appreciation of current surroundings, and is most certainly unconscious. We do not fall into unconscious behavioral patterns all on our own. They are programmed into us through media, authority figures, family and peers, and our own ego. In order to ‘escape’ this pattern, we must acknowledge that we do not dwell in the past or exist in the future. We are here, now, only. The future and past are both mental constructs to help the human being understand the complexity of the Universe outside of a single, continuous moment that never ends which is all of existence and pure potentiality wrapped into One.

This is not always an easy acknowledgement, but regardless of what you believe, time is only a linear measurement of an endless sea of possible Universes that we all have dreamed up. Our shared reality is a co-creation that is brought into being by our combined consciousness which includes both the Divine Feminine and Masculine. This is a state of Oneness, with the illusion of separateness due to the limitations of the five senses. When we step beyond the bounds of our perceived reality and understand there is energy and consciousness in literally every thing around us, we know that we are connected to all there is, has been, or ever could be.

So how then, do we reach nonattachment in this physical reality, without acting as if nothing ever really matters? But wait, haven’t I said before that nothing does matter? Now I’m contradicting myself. Nothing ever matters before or beyond the present moment. What does that mean? The past is no longer relevant, and the future should not be a reason for living. This moment is the reason to live, for we can never know what the future holds. We are all part of the web of consciousness, and so we write our destiny together. Nothing is separate. Not even my being from yours as you read these words. Know them to be true.

Thank you for reading. Good luck to you all. Be well. Until next time, Namaste.

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