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But between enlightenment and perpetual misery we have a lot of mobility there, depending on how we field our wants and needs. So true. And arguably some of the other things that bedevil us are down to trying to manage the perpetual little bubbles of impulse. Such as:. But like you, I find I often eat it too quickly. Who knows? When we experience the same thing repeatedly, we habitually stop noticing it as a sensory experience and start to see it as a conceptual one. Then, when you look back a month later, all you remember were the nice parts of the evening so you talk yourself into doing it again and again..

Not sure where I am going with this. Good read. But my belief is that to have no wants is divine; to have as few as possible comes next to the divine; and as that which is divine is supreme, so that which approaches nearest to its nature is nearest to the supreme. Happiness is maintained not in rewards, but in seeking. Science is about questioning, new ways of looking at things, new devices. Woe is us! Food is the definition of short term gratification. For other wants, I write them down in a list and look at them on occasion.

The short term impulse passes. If something stays on the list for a while, then it has more meaning or purpose than the rest. This gives me some semblance of control over those desires.

Do You Really Want It?

I like what you said about exercise, can you expand on that? When I was training competitvely for triathlons, I was pushing my exercising limits. As you push to those extremes, your caloric intake has to balance out, or you start to lose too much weight, recover poorly, and lose energy.

Get What We Want

With so much time spent exercising, eating just became a necessity. It became a chore to consume enough calories. Then during a long distance event it helps to refuel. Planning out 15 minute intervals between sips of sport drink was enough to keep me going, without getting sick with the exertion. Also, I would take salt supplements at a regular interval to balance sweat loss on extremely hot days.

All of this was just to give my body what it needed to go on.


That knowledge can be used cater for any lifestyle I choose going forward. I have discovered the same thing since I started working out regularly. I find smaller amounts of food much more satisfying because I think of it in terms of what it can do for my body or against it , and not just as a source of entertainment.

It feels like a much healthier relationship to food, and the desires that relate to it. Yea, every meal has a purpose with exercise. Just wanted to say thanks for the blog. Always an interesting read! Well said. So true! Pure expectational joy, caught up in the moment of potential. At its best, it happens on a train travelling through unknown territory, on a hike as you climb higher, in bed as you tumble into dreams.

Wanting wanting itself is an interesting idea. I believe it. Oh man saturday morning used to be like christmas. I remember it as pure joy, getting up early and sitting on the couch wrapped in a blanket, watching absolutely anything at all as long as it was animated.

It was time to move on with the day, maybe go outside and play with friends. I think you are right: the anticipation is the highest high, not the getting or having. Once we master the extremely difficult task of noticing our desires as they continuously pop into existence from a source we do not understand, we will see that to run off and try to fulfill them as they appear is quite mad. Not much different from a small child chasing soap bubbles. Not that there is anything wrong with that.

Can you relate?

But with awareness, after having assimilated the result of chasing all those bubbles, one must given sufficient grace come to the conclusion that its much better to sit on the fence and watch all those bubbles than to chase them. To not identify with your wants but acknowledging them all the same is a monumental task in our current consumer focused society. Your resolve to dim the sensory input flood from your surroundings needs to be anchored in unwavering knowledge.

Knowledge that what you have always been after is: Freedom.

You Want it,you got it - Rancid -

Experience of being Limitless. Thank you so much for taking the time to write David. We are all better off because of your contribution. This is right-on. What about the BIG wants — justice, equity, freedom from climate crisis, peace absence of war. Good question. I think they are categorically the same.

We do desire things that are worth getting, but it is possible to have an unhealthy relationship to a worthwhile desire. Just a few days ago I saw this nifty little formula on Facebook: Happiness equals reality minus expectations. That says a lot in a very few words. Really enjoyed this piece, David. Can you recommend an easily digestible book on real-life applicable Buddhist philosophy especially one that explores the idea that desire is the cause of suffering?

Thanks again for your thought-provoking blog. Another wonderful read! I was reminded of a great book highly recommended! And, no one can be free of the desire to eat and still stay alive, so…. I think something is usually lost in translation here.

I disagree, and I think Siddhartha Gautama would disagree with you, also. I have read The Dhammapada several times. Nirvana is the blowing out of the candle, the cessation of all desire… Because all desire, according to Buddhism, causes suffering. Very interesting recognition David. That was the first post of yours I read around two and a half years ago :. That thought you had a boy, clutching your gaming system, pleading with the universe to allow you to get home and PLAY…. Paradoxically, I want to see the next thing.

Do the next thing. Make the next thing.

You Can’t Always Get What You Want – But Sometimes You Get What You Need

I found out that waiting for a few weeks after wanting to buy something often result in modifying or eliminating that want. Let the initial excitement pass. This has helped me consider my conflicting feelings about going on vacation. I do this thing, since I was a child, like a mental game or a coping mechanism. I try to release myself from expectations and let things surprise me. I refuse more or less successfully to see them in advance through imagination.

Otherwise, I convince myself that nothing is going to happen exactly, word for word, as I imagine it, so any expectation is just the discovery of something that will not be. I think you are right, what we are after is a feeling, and everything else is currency that promises to get it for us.

You were talking about things, but when whenever we try to use someone else as currency to get our fix, it can be disastrous. Thanks for a thought provoking piece. I have to discover what the moment has to offer, how it will actually be.