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  1. #11
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    Enlightenment begins with a desire to achieve it, but what does it end with? Not very many of us know the answer to that. I, personally, am a fan of desire, and living the life of a Buddhist seems very undesirable to me.

    A lot of people claim to know the answer to finding happiness, joy, or whatever ultimate good they believe in, and Buddhists, or those that adhere to Eastern philosophies, only make up a fraction of them. Yet everything that all of them claim to know will only be condensed to pondering material for me. My life is my own and I've got to find my own way, as they all have. If this means that I'll just be born again and again until I get it right, so be it. Until then, if it ever happens, I'm very happy with desire.
    "When a resolute young fellow steps up the great bully, the world, and takes him boldly by the beard, he is often surprised to find that it comes off in his hand, and that it was only tied on to scare away the timid adventurers." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

  2. #12
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    Embrace it, reasonably. I rarely desire anything strongly. When I do, I go for it.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by 01011010 View Post
    Embrace it, reasonably. I rarely desire anything strongly. When I do, I go for it.
    So sorry to hear that. Strong desire, unreasonable or otherwise, is a big part of what makes life worth living, IMO. And, combined with a great deal of determination ad self-discipline, I almost always realize my desires. I would be lost without desire--and undoubtedly would've accomplished little.
    It's a blessing...and a curse.

    Originally Posted by Anja
    I don't have room for shame in my life.

    INFJ, 4w5 sx

  4. #14
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    The point of desire, like Capitalism, is not to understand it but to change it.

    And it is only recently, and only in developed countries, usually the West, that we have been free to follow our desires.

    In fact it is commonplace to say, we are free to do as we desire as long as we harm no one else.

    But there are desires and desires, and some desires are more desirable than others.

    Many of our desires are shaped by our childhood; and many are the result of ignorance; and many the desires of the herd we just pick up.

    So we need an education of desire. We need, for instance, to know the hierarchy of desire.

    But most of all, we need to know what is best to desire. What is the best civilization has to desire?

    But first it is important to know oneself - to know what one presently desires. So that we know in which direction we desire to go. So we are not limited by our present desires, most of which we have accumulated by accident. And we are able to desire the very best there is.

    But changing desire is one of the most difficult things to do, and the most rewarding.

    I think it was Margaret Mead who said, "It is easier to change your religion than to change your diet".

    And we desire breakfast, lunch and dinner every day. So we have the perfect opportunity to change our appetite, our desire for food.

    But we are all fundamentalists and conservatives when it comes to our appetite.

    So our desire rules us. We do not command our desires.

    Is this desirable?

  5. #15

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    To desire not to desire is also a desire. So how do we escape from desire?
    Maybe the only escape is to sort through the wheat from the chaff.

  6. #16
    pathwise dependent FDG's Avatar
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    We should rise above it when we desire something out of our reach (which includes anything that will damage us greatly), and embrace it when we desire something that we can reasonably have.

    But sometimes I wonder if the most advanced Buddhist monks meditating on top of a mountain lead the most content and happiest of lives.
    Have you ever tried meditating - or simply being - completely alone (with other people the feeling is slightly different) on top of a mountain? It's an awesome feeling. I've rarely felt as happy as in those moments. That type of life is not easily accessed nowadays, you need a lot of backup resources in order not to starve.
    ENTj 7-3-8 sx/sp

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by wolfy View Post
    To desire not to desire is also a desire. So how do we escape from desire?
    Maybe the only escape is to sort through the wheat from the chaff.
    Yeah, go for the wheat.

    Discriminate between the wheat and the chaff. Be discriminatory.

    As we perceive by making distinctions, it might be said, we perceive by making discriminations.

    So what we see is determined by how we discriminate.

    The vulgar only see what is vulgar.

    While the discriminatory see what is true and beautiful.

    Of course the vulgar will screech at you, "Don't be judgemental!".

    But I tell you, "Make fine and discriminating judgements". And the finer and more discriminating, the broader will be your horizons and the more you will see.

    Discrimination is like magic - the more you discriminate, the more you get.

    Discrimination is a true magic pudding.

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by cherchair View Post
    So sorry to hear that.
    Why?

  9. #19
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    Red face Desire: Should we rise above it or embrace it?

    Quote Originally Posted by 01011010 View Post
    Why?
    Maybe because it's hard for me to imagine strong desire as a rare thing in my life. But maybe my life would be more peaceful if desire were a little more rare, especially when I desire things out of my reach (ex: the desire to run, hike, rock climb, ski, etc.). Nevertheless, I think that unrealized (unrelizable?) desire was the impetus to remain active in other ways once I accepted that the other was out of reach. I don't think I'm explaining this very well.
    It's a blessing...and a curse.

    Originally Posted by Anja
    I don't have room for shame in my life.

    INFJ, 4w5 sx

  10. #20
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    That type of life is not easily accessed nowadays, you need a lot of backup resources in order not to starve.
    What do you mean? Not starving in previous eras required much more intensive, time consuming, and (for most) unsatisfying labor. In the modern era you have a lot more free time available in which to meditate alone (if that's your thing).

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