There was a man who got intoxicated after consuming bhang(cannabis) in the evening. He went for a stroll towards the river nearby. It was a full moon night and very pleasant weather. He saw a boat on the bank of the river. He thought why I should not go for a boat a ride in the moon lit night. He boarded the boat and started boating with two wooden planks meant for it. After 4-5 hours when he got tired, he thought he should now return back as he might have come too far from the bank. By this time it started becoming dusk and his intoxication was also over. When he saw around, he was shocked to find that he was on the river bank only and had not travelled anywhere at all. He got down the boat and found that the anchor of the boat was fixed in the ground, which he had forgotten to unhook. He repented and laughed at himself for his blunder mistake and foolishness. He worked so hard and wasted so much time and energy without any fruit. This is not simply a story to laugh at. This is a simile and story of most of us on our spiritual journey. We also do the same mistake most of the time. Let us see how.
Here the boat is like spiritual path (karma, bhakti, gyan, dhyan yoga etc.), which we adopt based on our liking or mental inclination. The anchor has generally 5 hooks for fixing it in the ground to avoid moving away the boat from the bank. Here anchor is our ego having 5 sense organs leading to kam , krodh, mad, moh and lobh (lust, anger, ego, attachment and greed). This anchor is embedded in the ground of world/ worldly temptations.
Thus. most of us are doing the same blunder on our spiritual journey as that of the man of the story. This is because under intoxication (of attachment to worldly pleasures), we forget to unhook the anchor(ego with five senses) from the ground (world) and go on doing efforts , spiritual practices/yoga etc. and remain where we were for long time and sometimes even for many reincarnations without any spiritual advancement. Therefore, for spiritual progress detachment from the world is must.