Afraid of wanting

Wanting isn’t merely a desire, or perhaps it is. But a desire can also be an aspiration, a dream, an effervescence, a light tingling of the soul whereas to want, in my eyes is a dreadfully heavily-breathing, mamoth-etic creature ready to pounce onto reality.

There is violence in wanting. There is greed… I recognize that to “want something” and to be greedy are very different, nonetheless I struggle with the act of wanting.

People say they want to meet someone. They don’t want to die. They want to die. They want to make money. They want to be happy. They don’t want cherrios. They don’t want money in the end. But oh, wait… they do. May be. May be not. They want to kill. They really want to kill. They want to buy. They want to protect. They want shoes. They don’t want candy. They want to learn. They want points. They want to make a point.

To me “wanting” is the bridge between desiring or aspiring to, and having, it steps aside from the need and self-proclaims itself valid. But is it?

“Don’t kill her off. Leave her on life support. I don’t WANT her to go. Yet.”

At the same time it’s the closest link we have to our childhood, an uninhibited exhibition and hopefully enactment of our deepest desires. But all too often, it seems what we want is fed to us, our desires are manufactured by what I seem headed towards becoming: designers, brands, producers and industrialists, often under a Catch-22 because they don’t necessarily want something bad for us they are only trying to “supply” a demand… Which they in part have created.

The most important then must be to trust yourself enough to know you will want what you fundamentally desire, and that this, is a valid “want.” The toddler screaming that they don’t want to go to school perhaps ought to be listened to a little more then than when he or she asks for the next cool thing ten years later… Living in society teaches us to re-examine our personal value sets and adopt most of the ones of our (global) surrounding community that have been defined through social contracts. But in turn, they muffle our instincts… I know this observation is far from new.

But it leads me to point out at the same time that the reason that “society frames us” and puts us in boxes is because we “produce” and because we produce, in our work, in our lives, in our thoughts, in our bowels, space is needed and sorting things out is often the best way to avoid an overload of the space. So what if we didn’t produce? What if we all stopped generating content, can we LIVE and NOT GENERATE or generate less?

By thinking like this, I have reached a point I can easily describe as a nearing-psychotic-condition-of-dis-desire or, what could also be described as sabotaging most of my sources of “wants” that go beyond: wanting to sketch, and wanting to eat good food. These are inoffensive enough that I can carry out my life doing these things and FUNDAMENTALLY enjoy them, because they are easily desired and had, obtained.

Day after day it turns into living on stubs rather that roots. And every now and then I tip over. It is also a lot like a psychosis because it takes place through random rituals of root correction: any indication of root-growth is severely repressed by my own internal dis-desire police.

I feel a sort of physical inability to want something greater than I can fathom. By fear of not being able to always keep it out of others’ way, by fear of tripping over myself. By fear of not being up to the task of being as descent of a human being as I’d like to be. Instead I choose not to compete. But sometimes it’s stronger than me I try, for a night. For a week. For three months. For six of them. And then like a parent sneaking up on the child playing Legos instead of sleeping… Like the dream where you realize you ARE naked infront of the class… Like that time someone bit that apple… A great deep reprimanding voice growls in my head and showers me in fright: a self initiated doubt-o-tron.

This bit of writing is the first step to learning to want, a little more, a little more often, and to learn to stand by that desire, passionately.


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