Per usual, I have a case of the wants. For as long as I can remember I’ve been a proponment of desire and only until recently, with several papers and presentations on the topic, have I come to appreciate my own desire to actually empower desire in others. According to the Etymology Dictionary, the word “desire” comes from the Latin desiderare meaning to “long for, wish for; demand, or expect, it stems from the phrase de sidere meaning “from the stars,” as sidus as a “heavenly body, star, constellation.” A literal translation of desire could perhaps be “await what the stars will bring.” It is as if word desire itself acknowledges a longing coming from the heavens.
I notice that once we start looking specifically at the things we crave they feel far away and unattainable. However, once we settle in and connect with them, they flow like water into the ocean of our hearts content. (That may sound dramatic, I assure that is truly what it feels like.) In Nicole Daedone’s book (One Taste Founder and author of “Slow Sex”) she recommends making a list of what your sex wants. I did that list, which is unpostable for fear of my blog being marked as X-rated. Once I got started, I quickly realized I had a serious case of the wants that weren’t sex-related. Our yearnings hold pure gold when it comes to showing us our values, and I think my current list says a lot about me:
- I want to finish my book on PR
- I want new running shoes
- I want to create a masterpiece paper for Psyche and Cosmos
- I want more money
- I want a new dust mask for Burning Man
- I want flowers on my kitchen table
- I want two peacock feathers for a vase in my apartment
- I want a holotropic breathwork session
- I want to be touched more
- I want a kitty
- I want to be present to all love around me more often
- I want chocolate fondue and a foot rub at the same time
- I want to ravage the man in the photo above
When I look over this list, I see that behind each want is a deeper layer of desire, a deeper level of craving beyond the simple want itself. Wanting flowers and peacock feathers relate to the importance of my environment to reflect beauty. I then wonder more why the beauty of my environment is so important to me. What’s even more fascinating about desire is the differences on an individual level. Each layer of want reveals an individual and also the possibility of a collective yearning. I may not know a lot of people who at this moment want peacock flowers, although I do know a lot of people who also might want to ravage the man in the photo.
I often wonder if I will ever completely uncover (rhyme not intentional but appreciated) all of my desires. I don’t think the goal, like some philosophies suggest, is to free ourselves of these cravings. Instead I think plunging into them offers us the freedom we ultimately crave. I am a huge believer in the sensual as a route towards this connection with our desires. (For this reason, chocolate fondue and flowers will remain on my list.) This may sound Tantric, and I think it’s much more than just acknowledging the sacred of all things…it’s the exploration and willingness to look at what we want that offers us insight into our ultimate being.
We all have different ways of figuring out what we long for either through meditation/quieting the mind, OMing, creativity, connecting with our version of the divine, or even doing nothing at all. However, it isn’t enough just to desire something…the real work begins in asking for, and in my case, committing to its course. To quote Goethe, who is credited with saying this and didn’t really as it was W.H. Murray, “…the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves to. Said another way, the entire universe of creation supports us when we follow our case of the wants. Whether or not those wants will give us what we are ultimately looking for…that’s another story all together.