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Choosing to Desire

photo by Hibbard

“One falls to the ground in trying to sit on two stools” – Francois Rabelais

In pursuing desire, we have to have our goal become paramount in our lives. We are not going to be able to make everyone around us happy, and will likely make even some of our own personality facets experience varying levels of discomfort. In pursuing desire, also, some of our other activities will have to give way, so that our energies can be harnessed in the proper direction.

Without this, we are trying to steer two horses that are intent upon going opposite directions. The chariot stalls out, grinds to a halt, or worse, topples over, dashing us to the ground. To dare is to engage our will upon the task at hand. To dare is to risk the unknown, which includes big failure and big success. We have to risk fulfillment and happiness along with a lot of effort. But when we harness the engine of desire, we become unstoppable.

Gandhi never would have accomplished what he did without daring. Neither would Ida B. Wells, Hypatia, Amelia Earhart, or to use more contemporary examples, Derek Sivers or the people of Medicins sans Frontieres. Art would not get made, nor music composed for the rest of us to enjoy. People would labor away timidly and in obscurity, and the world would be poorer for it.

There comes a time in our quest when daring must enter, or something in us withers, en route to atrophy and death. How long can desire languish? A good long time, but the patterns that hold it in abeyance grow stronger in that time, making it all the more difficult to commit the acts of will and daring that will set this part of us free.

What will you dare today? It can be simple or grand, that part does not matter. What matters is that we do this thing, that we make a strong “yes” or state a clear “no”. We sit firmly upon the one chair of our making, or perhaps even stand tall.

(another entry from the larger, ongoing project)

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