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Desires Vs Longings

Updated: May 2, 2023

Desires; they’re a never-ending hamster wheel that you are on. Desires are constantly running through your mind from birth to death. Each desire comes from believing that you lack something now and you must get it sometime in the future, hopefully the near future. But even if you fulfil it, almost simultaneously another one or another two or another three arise. And you go on trying to fulfil those desires until more arise. And then you keep doing this for several years, several lifetimes, and several millennia.

But each desire takes you away from the present moment. How can you enjoy the present moment when you’re focusing on getting something in the future? When you feel like you are lacking something now, how can you enjoy the present moment?

And each desire is manufactured by the mind. Each desire is programmed into you from outside sources, whether it’s your upbringing, whether it’s your education system, whether it’s the adverts on TV, mainstream media, all these are sources that can create desires within your mind. They influence the voice in your head.

And of course, from your own experience, you will know that fulfilling desires does not bring you any sort of long-term fulfilment or long-term happiness. It can only give you short-term pleasure at the most.

So what is the answer? How can you achieve that long-term happiness? The answer is not to try to fulfil as many desires as possible throughout your life like we’ve all been trying for several lifetimes. The answer is to go beyond desire to a place of desirelessness, to a place of knowing that you have everything you need right here right now, because life is always providing you with what you need. Why would it create a life path for you but not give you what you need in order to follow that life path and to keep living for as long as you’re supposed to live in this lifetime? It doesn’t make sense. Desires come from wanting something that you don’t need right now.

So the answer is to simply become desireless by going beyond desire. This does not mean resisting each desire that comes, because this will definitely not lead to any sort of happiness at all. This will lead to constant inner conflict. The answer is to observe these desires come and go. You can witness each desire as a dancer of energy, a dancer of energy asking you to dance with them. Now you have two choices: you can either say, okay, and you go dance with them, dance with them until the music is over. And then the dancer leaves and then another dancer comes and asks you to dance. And then you keep going with them. It’s all a play, a dance. But because the music keeps stopping and there’s such long times between fulfilling each desire, between one dancer and the other, this way cannot give you long-term happiness.

But the other way is to tell each dancer, “no thank you” and to simply witness and observe them dance away, and all these dancers will come and go, come and go, and you will be in your still, silent centre, observing and enjoying, watching all the desires. Again, it’s all about enjoyment. You don’t have to resist desires. You don’t need to judge them as bad. Just watch them come and go. They’re just dances of energy. It’s all play. It’s all a game. Enjoy it, enjoy it but don’t be sucked up into it. And when you simply observe these desires, not being swept up by them, how can you not be happy? How can you be disturbed? How can your happiness be only conditional? You simply observe the energies come and go, come and go, but you stay still, silent and in peace.

Now this does not mean you stay still and silent for your whole life. What would be the point of life if that was the case? But it is about following your inner longings rather than desires. Desires are always manufactured in your mind from outside sources. They do not come from within you. They are dancers that are outside of you. Longings are different. Longings are your soul wanting to do something but this longing will come from within. They’re often spontaneous. They often guide you to do something that you never thought you would be doing.

And these longings, in contrast to desires, grow and grow each and every day. They get stronger within you until you take the action that they are guiding you to take. This is different from desires, which are only temporary. They come but if you wait a little moment then they go. The longings grow stronger every day, every day, every day, until you take those actions.

And those longings do not actually take you away from the present moment. They are guiding you to take actions in the present moment with no regard to where it may lead, with no regard to some future goal. You’re not taking this action to achieve something. You are taking this action because this is what you’re being guided to do in the present moment, and it’s what is bringing you joy right now.

And when these longings come and you follow those longings, you align yourself with your soul path. And when you align yourself with your soul path, you will feel fulfilled, true fulfilment from within, because your soul will be happy. You’re doing what you’re supposed to be doing. But when you are following desires, which often take you on detours away from your life path, you cannot experience this true inner fulfilment unless you realign yourself back onto your life path.

Now, I’m not saying that there is something wrong with following desires and fulfilling them. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with it. You are hungry and you eat some nice tasty food. This was a desire, you fulfilled it, but it is by no means wrong. But when your focus throughout your life is trying to fulfil desires and thinking that you are going to be happy once something happens, or once you do something, or once you get something, then you are never going to be happy in the long-term, and you’ll never be happy just by yourself or when you’re not doing anything. But when you follow longings and simply observe desires without being sucked up by them, you will always be happy. You will always be in love with life. And your love and happiness will not be conditional. So these are the two choices that I wanted to highlight to you all today.

Thank you.

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