Easier said than done. The last of the Four Noble Truths provides the pathway that leads to this, but let's stay with the Third for just a moment longer. What does letting go really mean?
I think of my own battles with things that have caused me pain and suffering over the years. When I think of what it took to let go of alcohol, bad relationships, attachments to jobs that were going nowhere, or behaviors that no longer met my needs, I remember just how painful it is to even think of letting go of this thing or person that was causing me all this pain.
I remember quite distinctly the feeling of panic that ran over and through me whenever I contemplated quitting drinking. Even the thought of cutting down caused me panic.
Even when there is nothing as strong as an anxiety attack connected with our attachments it can be hard to let go. Anyone who has ever tried to stop a bad habit can testify how devilish those habits can be to break, even when we sincerely want to.
But I also know that at times, rare as they may be, when I've been able to really and truly let go of whatever attachment is stressing me out, I feel that wave of serenity wash over me. Paraphrasing someone wiser than me, hold on a lot and suffer a lot. Hold on a little, suffer a little.