What do I want? (Download)
Monday 29 August 2011
Article: 4,474 chars
What do I want is surely a question you are no doubt familiar with and on the minds of many.
A question that you ask yourself many times a day, either spoken out aloud or quietly in your mind as thought and prayer. Wanting is both the engine room through which achievement is possible and the boiler room exuding stress and suffering, for which a vessel with steadfast direction needs both in a measure of balance for a successful journey.
Wanting in its simplest form is an endless series of requests for more, new and different as compared with being content with what you have and the blessings that are around you the things you can physically see and the many things you can't.
What do I want may vary from you deciding between a cup of tea or coffee to a much greater choice of deciding what you want as a career, or purpose you give your every waking breath.
Wanting can be a simple almost unconscious action to one requiring a great level of inspiration, creativity, thought and planning based upon your values and merit. Knowing what you really want can be a very difficult process indeed and one not to be scoffed at. Not only getting or not getting what you want can cause suffering, so too can not knowing what you really want. Sigh!
Suffering can be a side effect of wanting, from either the disappointment of not getting it or getting it and then not being happy for any length of time after you obtain it, causing you to then want something else, and so the cycle goes.
However, in an ever evolving and advancing world it's difficult to argue against wanting, as a philosophy of growth it has benefited many. But how do we ensure this wanting of ours is more constructive than destructive?
To help you with this problematic task, you may wish to consider that when you were born and came to be in your current form, you came with nothing, and when you depart your physical form you will also leave with nothing.
So what will have been the meaning behind your visit to this human realm? Will you be truly satisfied and fulfilled when you leave, knowing you did your bit or the fact that you celebrated each day enjoying it to the fullest?
Will it all have been about some materialistic gathering, accumulating a great swag of material objects at great stress and loss to us when we know we can't take them with us, save willing them to others and your unborn?
So outside our general need for shelter, food, clothing, safety and love, causing suffering to ourselves and others seems quite a bit odd and mad somehow? Where did we inherit such a greed and insecure mentality, persona and culture? What's more, is it healthy to have such a disposition?
Many enlightened souls and wise teachers have taught us that wanting can be a path to suffering, paving the way for many of us to practice the difficult art of not wanting, inter alia, to live simply and reduce our suffering. However, is this always the case? Can we ever be rid of suffering totally in the absence of wanting? If we are not wanting are we then not advancing, and if not progressing are we not suffering anyway? So are we not caught between the devil and the dark blue sea?
Perhaps the art of not wanting and being grateful for all we have should be learnt first and a default position for all we are and do, giving thanks to all and everything. From there you can embark on many a journey from your everyday challenging tasks to impossible feats. And when it all gets a bit too much, stressful and suffering is amidst the horizon, simply knowing you can retreat for a short spell into a world of gratitude can be all you need to save you. Replenishing your soul, energy and life force just as a young infant returns to its mother's bosom for nourishment, nurturing, bonding, love, care and safety.
So to answer your question "What do I want?" it may very well be peace, good health, love, care, connection, enjoyment and fulfillment knowing that you have served your family and humanity in the best way possible. Perhaps your real wanting may be to see how many lives you can touch and change for the better. For what else really matters at the end of the day?
The first thing you and anybody should ever want is to be grateful for all they have.
To help with this, view and express your comments at: www.iamsograteful.org
For a wonderful website to express and view comments of gratitude visit: www.IamSoGrateful.org
Alternatively, contribute your experience and knowledge by leaving a comment below or send your story in to be published.
What you say may just help another so go ahead share, and let us all be enlightened together