What is more important – to satisfy a thousand desires, or to conquer just one.
I was watching ‘Samsara’ yesterday, and a monk in the film wrote this line in a letter to a man who had left the monastery for a secular life, and I have been thinking about it ever since. I realised that we have spend our lives chasing the things we desire, whether it is money and property, security for the future or even people. I don’t think I have ever thought about the concept of conquering desire, and have my whole life only ever been concerned with trying to satisfy the things that my mind or my body wants. Which is, right this minute, making me feel rather superficial or materialistic. I have thought about the concept of what my soul desires, but never came to any conclusions. I felt it to be too intangible a thing, and I have never been cognisant of what my soul truly desires. In the past, I have left this train of thought feeling somehow LESS in the soul department. But the feeling always passes, and no doubt more quickly than it should, as it is something I chose not to dwell on.
I guess I am not a particularly spiritual persion, it is all too abstract and evanescent for me, I have always been more into the concrete and the definable. From time to time, I used to think that in some ways I envied people their faith in something larger than our own fleeting and inconsequential lives. But I realise this is just not true. I don’t envy people their faith and spiritualism, it has just been something I have been telling myself (and sometimes others) to hide my total apathy, and even disdain. I couldn’t give a fuck, Jones. If I am totally honest, I recognise that I have sometimes pitied people for needing that sort of mental crutch. Particularly for the screwed version of the world people can get as a result of their faith – it is as though they don’t have enough belief in themselves, that they need the human construct of religion to bolster them through their lives. I have never desired this type of spiritualism, and as a younger person, whenever I have tried to force a sense of belief or faith onto my life, I usually just ended up feeling like a massive hypocrite.
For the last few years, what I have desired most is more children. But being denied that most fervent wish, has left me feeling impotent and frustrated. I have found myself totally unable to affect either, the outcome of the situation, or my urge to achieve this goal. The result is that the impulse to satisfy other desires has intensified. Normal restraint towards these more attainable desires is out the window. Impulse control be damned. When that which you desire most is denied, why not feed those desires you can?
But what after satisfying those desires for sex and nail polish? What next? What I most covet now is control.