What You Don’t Understand About Desire

Photo by W A T A R I on Unsplash

Desire often gets a bad reputation and it’s easy to see why. When we don’t get what we want, we feel horrible and we wish we didn’t have desires in the first place. But perhaps there is a misunderstanding of what desire is that can help us in fulfilling said desire.

Desire is pretty much a seed, in that if you have an actual seed, you potentially have a tree in your hands. In the seed is the yet unmanifested tree. No one would look at a seed and think that it couldn’t be a tree (given the right circumstances). But even if for some reason it didn’t, there are so many more seeds! And therefore, so many potential trees.

It’s the same for us. When we have a desire, the desire is the yet unmanifested goal or achievement. After all, could you really achieve anything without first having desire? Of course not. You couldn’t have a tree without a seed, could you?

For example, if you didn’t have the desire to be a lawyer, can you be a lawyer? No, it’s impossible. How would you end up enrolling in law school? Why would you be paying for lessons? Why would you be sitting exams, much less studying for them? You wouldn’t.

And of course, if you fail along the way, that’s not the end. You just learn to try again (take another seed) in a different way (different circumstance/environment).

But here is the main takeaway I want you to have here. There is a misconception when it comes to what desire is. Desire does not mean that you lack something and you need to go get it. Desire means you’ve been imbued with the ability to achieve or experience something, or to express yourself, regardless of your current circumstances.

When you think about your desire and you feel the lack of it more than you feel the joy of the thing itself, you will unconsciously block yourself from experiencing the goal fulfilled. As a result, you’ll be stuck in the same feeling of lack.

For example, let’s say you have desires to defend people who can’t defend themselves. This is something that you will naturally do when the opportunity arises. You don’t mope around wishing there was someone to support. You live your life and when the right opportunity shows itself, you take it.

Another example is when you care about someone. You might care about them because they’re talented or attractive or they like the same things you do. But again, you don’t get frustrated at your inability to show love. You just do it when you can and to the best of your ability.

If you had stayed stuck on there being no one to defend or having no opportunity to show you care about a specific person, you’d stay stuck in that experience due to your focus on what you don’t have. If you keep focus on what’s missing, all you’ll ever see is what’s missing.

What’s more, you’ve missed the point of the desire. The point being that you are primed to be doing something. Let’s face it, It’s not that you create desires to give to yourself and then send yourself out to make it happen. So, where does desire come from? Life. Life created the desire and life will fulfill it through you.

One final point. Did you notice that I said “defend people” and “show you care” instead of be a lawyer or have a relationship. That’s because being a lawyer and having a relationship are static goals. They do not express desire, they merely hint at it.

You could be a lawyer and be terrible at it; you could even hate it. Having a relationship means nothing in and of itself; not to mention you could hate the person you’re in that relationship with.

However, lawyers defend people. Being in a relationship means showing someone that you care. Having a million dollars is also a static goal. What do you want to do with it? That’s the question. Do you want it to just look at in a bank vault or do you want to spend it?

Desire is dynamic and needs to be treated as such. By doing so, we can relax by knowing that our seed must grow. There’s no way that it cannot. Then it doesn’t matter if our static goals get achieved or not because the only way we get the label of lawyer or girlfriend or rich or whatever we think is by doing the stuff that would get us those labels.

Former Edu. Psychologist | Current Writer | Constant Learner | “By your stumbling the world is perfected.”

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