In defence of desire.

Defending intensity naturally brings me to desire. What happens with desire when there is a an unhealthy relationship with one’s own intensity? For me these two definitely go together. While struggling with acceptance of I, I automatically rejected D. While being in the process I didn’t notice what was happening and now looking at the past through the lens of reflection, I realise how suppressed were my desires. And I am using desire in a general sense, obviously. Anything that relates to my ability to say this is what I want and this is what I don’t want. And please try to see this want beyond neediness or greediness, I am talking about desire of a higher order. As a fundamental quality of being. Ability to move in the world according to our drives, aspirations, calling. We can refer to in through many different words but in essence it is a livelihood force that moves everything. It sounds big doesn’t it? And it is. Important remark - I am not advocating the existence of free will, in that regard I relate to compatibilism. Which argues that free will and determinism are mutually compatible and that it is possible to believe in both without being logically inconsistent. The nature of desire is embedded in a complex system of predetermined factors. As Arthur Schopenhauer famously said: Man can do what he wills but he cannot will what he wills. I’ll dedicate a separate drift another time to free will as my relationship with this concept shapes a lot of my thinking. Today let’s stay with desire and look at it outside of the free will discourse. Such a beautiful place but yet so difficult to practice.

Similar to intensity, I feel there is something with our relationship with desire that went wrong. I can think of the too overly present role of hypnotism in our lives. Hypnotism being an agent that affects out choices, obscuring our full awareness. When our own desires are replaced by default-mode desires, gradually the real thing is pushed to the background and is eventually forgotten. In the meantime, when derailed desires are not satisfying anymore, we end up in a desire gap, where no desire at all can be found. This state corresponds with nihilism, a philosophy that proposes an idea that nothing has meaning. Desirelessness is one of the symptoms that can be found in a nihilistic mindset.

Post-modernism also doesn't contribute to cultivation of desire and provided the rather unhelpful path of deconstructing meaning, taking away desire, swapping it for scepticism. No wonder our individual relationship to desire became crooked. We can look at the underlying distortion of desire by looking at it through various epistemological lenses. From one’s own perspective. Our relationship with the body, fear of right/wrong judgement, distorted own image and many other reasons led to certain complication in mapping own desires and acting upon them. Looking at desire through the second person lens shows us that due to changes in interpersonal social behaviours, our ability to express desires and needs is being jeopardised. The personal relationship with desire obviously contributes to the problem. Nevertheless, on interpersonal level desire is only part of the problem. Communication is an all-encompassing issue that needs some real improvement. From the third person perspective, the effect global developments have on our relationship with desire, hypnotism and I mentioned before, unreliability of the truth, fakes and memes, etc. contribute to either lack, suppression or undefinability of desire.

I do feel deeply sad of such tendencies, I didn’t manage to escape them and my desires got lost as I was growing up. The good news, though, is that the process is easy to reverse. Building a stronger core, an individual sovereignty, can help desire to manifest itself without voluntary adjustments. Inviting the intensity will automatically invite desire. And as well as with intensity I would like to add in to my quest for ways to give the stage to desires, wild lively energies that drive everything around.

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