In our society we are told that we are selfish if we want “too much” in our life. This idea of wanting “too much” comes from the misperception of what wanting actually is. Wanting is not an experience that we can resolve, remove or have control over. Wanting is a natural by-product of being human.
As human beings it is natural to want what is best for us. We show love to ourself by wanting specific feelings, circumstances and events to occur within our life. We then use these wants as inspiration to move towards what is our most holistic expression of love. If we do not experience wanting then we will experience repression of our actions, thoughts and emotions. When we repress in this way we stop loving ourself, another and all of life.
When we allow ourself to want what is best for us, we naturally allow and assist another to have what is best for them. We stop saying “you are being selfish for wanting too much” and we begin to say “you deserve to have what you want because you are beautiful, powerful and extraordinary”. To communicate with another in this way is to truly express love with them. In order to love another we must first love ourself. We love ourself by moving towards what we want in our life.
There is a distinction between want and desire. Want arises from gratitude, whereas desire is experienced when we are judgemental towards ourself, another and all of life. Desire comes from the belief that we need more than we already have, in order to feel love for the life that we are living. It is desire which is actually selfish, as desire can only be experienced by ourself for ourself. This is in contrast to wanting which can be experienced by us all for everyone and everything within our life.
A philosopher by the name of Alan Watts has described a state of existence known as desirelessness. To experience desirelessness is to be truly loving, as we no longer need any more than we already have in our life. When we begin to experience life from this perspective, we become free to have what we want in our life. When we have what we want, we love what we have; when we love what we have, our life and everything within it is transformed.
Please click here for an explanation of desirelessness from Alan Watts