Live and let go.
June 30, 2012 3:06 AM   Subscribe

Seeking wisdom on possessiveness.

I'm looking for inspiring texts, quotes, books, art that might lead to enlightenment regarding possessiveness and control (with particular reference to love and lovers) with bonus points for tracts on subject of letting go of material goods, success etc.
posted by veryape to Human Relations (14 answers total) 23 users marked this as a favorite

I like this meditation talk by Tara Brach: Relating Wisely to Desire.
posted by iamkimiam at 3:42 AM on June 30, 2012 [1 favorite]

God loved the birds and invented trees. Man loved the birds and invented cages.
—Jacques Deval
posted by Wemmick at 5:51 AM on June 30, 2012 [21 favorites]

Best answer: You might wish to work through some of the less overtly religious texts on Buddhisim with particular reference to the release of attachments.
"Grasping at things can only yield one of two results: Either the thing you are grasping at disappears, or you yourself disappear. It is only a matter of which occurs first."
A nice introduction with that quote as the lead-in, with links to further reading.
posted by seanmpuckett at 6:01 AM on June 30, 2012 [7 favorites]

I hold this to be the highest task for a bond between two people: that each protects the solitude of the other.

—Rainer Maria Rilke
posted by sockpup at 6:08 AM on June 30, 2012 [1 favorite]

Best answer: The Prophet by Gibran Khalil Gibran, especially on Marriage and Love.
posted by thatdawnperson at 6:37 AM on June 30, 2012 [1 favorite]

The poem "One Art" by Elizabeth Bishop
posted by sianifach at 7:44 AM on June 30, 2012 [1 favorite]

Better link, slight error in first one
posted by sianifach at 7:50 AM on June 30, 2012

Two poems by Sara Teasdale have been useful to me in the past: Dust and Advice to a Girl.
posted by daelin at 9:00 AM on June 30, 2012 [1 favorite]

Mefi's own Pastabagel said, I think the wisest thing I have ever heard about material possessions.
posted by restless_nomad at 10:01 AM on June 30, 2012 [1 favorite]

'Liking is the best form of ownership, and ownership the worst form of liking.'

From a children's book by Jose Saramago, possibly slightly misquoted by yours truly's highly fallible memory.
posted by pudders at 10:47 AM on June 30, 2012

“A forest bird never wants a cage.”

-Henrik Ibsen

“If you love something set it free; if it returns its yours forever, if not it was never meant to be.”
- Proverb (attribution on this one is hazy)
posted by fake at 2:35 PM on June 30, 2012

Reverse psychology filter: Mary Tudor said, "When I am dead and opened, you shall find Calais lying in my heart." Though we have all felt that way about our personal don't want to be her!
posted by skbw at 7:05 PM on June 30, 2012

Split the Lark—and you'll find the Music—
Bulb after Bulb, in Silver rolled—
Scantily dealt to the Summer Morning
Saved for your Ear when Lutes be old.

Loose the Flood—you shall find it patent—
Gush after Gush, reserved for you—
Scarlet Experiment! Sceptic Thomas!
Now, do you doubt that your Bird was true?

—Emily Dickinson
posted by Short Attention Sp at 4:28 AM on July 1, 2012

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