God speaks through our desires. If there is a universal divine who manifested this galaxy, solar systems, and multitude of universes, surely he had a desire. Willa Carter, the Pulitzer prize winner said ““The world is little, people are little, human life is little. There is only one big thing — desire.” It is this big thing called desire which caused the universal divine to manifest these little things. This manifestation is not by any means a random act. Yes, various scriptures say the manifestation was effortless on part of the divine, but it could not have been without an intent, a desire. Some of the scriptures even say, this entire manifestation is a sport for the divine, even then, the sport had a desire behind it, albeit the reasoning could be to see the extent and efficacy of the sport. Let us not blame the scriptures, doesn’t matter to which faith they belong.
It is sickening to keep hearing the repeated hypocritical comments – “a man should be free from material desires”, “everything has become so commercial” and so on. Even more frustrating is that these comments are from supposedly spiritual individuals who quote scriptures to support their statement. But then, the scriptures had a context in their statements and we conveniently forget them. The interpretation is wrong. Search for one person in this world who is free from material desires, the number of hits will be zero. Don’t blame the constitution if the judge while giving a verdict decides to legislate instead of properly interpreting the constitution. Same goes here.
Here are 3 three reasons on why every individual should have desire:
Desire promotes the material cause of manifestation – This beautiful nature and beings are all here for a purpose. Desire promotes innovation in us to further advance the material cause of manifestation. Our ancestors used boats and horse driven carriages for transport. Today we have cars, planes and drones. Desire caused this advancement. Someone, Somewhere had a dream, an idea, an intent and through passion and effort made that a reality. The manifestation of the universe had two reasons – a material cause and a spiritual cause.
The material cause results in all things we can call “tangible” experience – the buildings around us, the greenery around us, the people around us, the colorful dress we wear and so on.
The spiritual cause helps us understand the purpose of our life, morals, ethics and the laws of nature to make use of the things resulting from the material cause.
Material causes absolutely need desire, without it, you and I would still be in the stone age and this blog post would not have made it to you.
Spiritual causes also need desire. Without desire, you would not go on an inquiry within yourself to identify the soul, spirit and body. You would not go on a retreat to learn yoga or practice meditation. You would not feed a homeless person or give charity. If we did not have a spiritual factor driving us, there would be no morals or ethics and we would be going around killing each other, stealing from each other.
Desire is built into your DNA – You open your eyes with a desire to see. You eat with a desire to fulfill your hunger and experience the taste. You love someone with a desire to give and hopefully with a desire to be loved back. Desire keeps you alive. Our visions begin with our desires.
Desire is with you from the moment you took your first breath and will be there till your last breath. An ascetic who renounces may claim he has no desire – fact is that even he has desire which motivates him to spread some good words to the society.
Desire helps you lead a blissful life – Desire drives effort. Actions result from effort. Outcomes result from actions. When the outcomes are to your liking, there is happiness and when the desire creating the happiness is not based on greed, there is a sense experience of joy and peace. It is hard to explain joy but can be felt. Happiness with calmness is joy. Community service brings you joy since it is happiness accompanies by a calmness factor of an improved society. You brim with joy when your child succeeds and your hard work pay off. Your child is probably all excited, while you take a step back and feel the happiness with a sense of calm relishing your child’s success. For you to be peaceful and joyful, desire is a must.
To keep desire in check and not let desire step into the territory of greed, Socrates said ““He who is not contented with what he has, would not be contented with what he would like to have.” A balanced life requires a desire of material pursuit and desire of spiritual pursuit in needed.
The next time you hear someone preach you about being materialistic, give them a hearing, pass on a nice smile, wave to them and keep moving -Do what your heart desires.
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Picture Courtesy – Gerd Altmann