When intense love is awakened, all worldly desires are obliterated and one automatically becomes detached from the world and everything in it. No desire remains for anything in this world or the next. In this state, when the mind is free from all these desires and longs to meet the Master, the longing and the love thus created is called detachment.
In this state, all attachment for the world vanishes and the mind has an urge to be with the lovers of God and away from the world. A detached person is indifferent to every non-essential object of the world and runs only after his Beloved, who is the Almighty Father.
True detachment consists in accepting the material comforts as well as the necessities of life merely to the extent of their usefulness for life, while realizing them to be only the means and not the goal. A truly detached person lives in this world but does not become entangled in it. He does not consider it necessary to leave the world in order to rise above it. He sees the presence of God in everything.
To be detached is to make one’s soul and mind free from desires and attachments for anything in this world and the next. Those who try to become detached without fully realizing its implications, cannot be happy or peaceful. Such people are restless in this world. One should, therefore, enter into the activities of this world in name only and should connect his soul with Nam, the Master and God.
Then he should continue increasing his love for them every day. His love for the world will decrease to the same extent as his love for God increases.
There is a difference between detachment and renunciation. Detachment is not dependent upon renunciation. One can be detached even while he is leading a householder’s life; whereas one who has renounced, may be devoid of the wealth of detachment.
Detachment is absolutely necessary in order to achieve spirituality. A seeker becomes eligible for true detachment by meeting a Master and by devotion to him. It is not necessary for him to leave his hearth and home. He becomes detached when he tastes the elixir of the soul’s love, for then all other attachments become insipid. He lives in the world but he is not attached to it.
The Master imparts to the devotee the secrets of Surat Shabd Yoga and teaches him how to practise it in this world and how to remain detached from the world. The disciple is then able to achieve salvation even while engaged in the activities of life in this world.
The saints did not renounce domestic life. They performed their worldly duties and remained truly detached through the grace of Nam.
The disciple can accomplish all this only through his love for the Master and by remaining indifferent towards the world. If one has a strong longing to meet the Lord and is deeply engaged in this pursuit -so much so that he feels it is impossible for him to live without the fulfilment of this longing – all his connections with the world are loosened and he may be called a detached person.
Maharaj Sawan Singh, Philosophy of the Masters, Vol. II