Desiring Desire

26 May

In religious circles, desire often gets a bad rap. Thought to lure one into avarice or lust, desire is often represented as the devil incarnate or that wanton woman leading a man astray. In Buddhism, desire is thought to be the root of all suffering and thus craving is ideally eliminated.

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I’m a fan of desire nonetheless. Related to the affect states interest-excitement and enjoyment-joy, desire represents a primal evolutionary force propelling our species not just towards procreation but towards learning, expansion, creativity and growth. And desire is not exclusive to sexuality although it is often relegated as such. Case in point. Little kids feel desire. Desire to get up in the morning and to start the day. Desire to play, learn and explore and to go to places like Disneyland.

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Dogs too register desire. They wag their tails in anticipation of a walk, the beach and/or a bone.

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Desire is an impulse within us motivating us hopefully towards positive things. In its best form it is a spiritual catalyst igniting our hearts to burn for God as we understand her.

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Yet many of us adults lose touch with desire when we’re fatigued, worried, burnt out or depressed. When I’m on a complete overload the most I desire is quiet and my bed. But even that desire is good for it motivates me towards rest.

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And it is in the resting that replenishing occurs and then the slow flame of desire begins to grow again…

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