Love,desire and passion
In our daily life we shall find that love, desire and passion are the same thing. If you destroy one, you destroy the other. We have to understand desire, and it is very difficult to understand something which is so demanding, urgent, because in the very fulfillment of desire, passion is engendered, with the pleasure and the pain of it.
In addition, if one understand desire, obviously, there must be no choice. You cannot judge desire as being good or bad, noble or ignoble, or say, “I will keep this desire and deny that one.”
All that must be set aside if we are to find out the truth of desire the beauty of it, the ugliness. It is a very curious thing to consider, but here in the West, the Occident, many desires can be fulfilled. You have cars, prosperity, better health, the ability to read books, acquire knowledge, and accumulate various types of experience; whereas, when you go to the Orient, they are still wanting food, clothing, and shelter, still caught in the misery and degradation of poverty.
But in the West as well as in the East desire is burning all the time, in every direction; outward and deep within, it is there. But what happens if you do not condemn desire, do not judge it as being good or bad, but simply be aware of it? I wonder if you know what it means to be aware of something?
Most of us are not aware because we have become so accustomed to condemning, judging, evaluating, identifying, choosing. Choice obviously prevents awareness because choice is always made as a result of conflict. To be aware when you enter a room, to see all the furniture, the carpet or its absence, and so on just to see it, to be aware of it all without any sense of judgment is very difficult.
Is desire then something to be put away, destroyed? We want to destroy it because one desire tears against another, creating conflict, misery, and contradiction; and one can see how one tries to escape from this everlasting conflict. So can one be aware of the totality of desire? What I mean by totality is not just one desire or many desires, but the total quality of desire itself. And one can be aware of the totality of desire only when there is no opinion about it, no word, no judgment, no choice.
To be aware of every desire as it arises, not to identify oneself with it or condemn it, in that state of alertness, is it then desire, or is it a flame, a passion that is necessary? The word passion is generally kept for one thing sex. But for me, passion is not sex. You must have passion, intensity, to really live with anything; to live fully, to look at a mountain, a tree, to really look at a human being, you must have passionate intensity.
But that passion, that flame is denied when you are hedged around by various urges, demands, contradictions, fears. How can a flame survive when it is smothered by a lot of smoke? Our life is but smoke; we are looking for the flame but we are denying it by suppressing, controlling, shaping the thing we call desire.
Without passion how can there be beauty? I do not mean the beauty of pictures, buildings, painted women, and all the rest of it. They have their own forms of beauty, but we are not talking of superficial beauty.
A thing put together by man, like a cathedral, a temple, a picture, a poem, or a statue may or may not be beautiful. But there is a beauty which is beyond feeling and thought and which cannot be realized, understood, or known if there is not passion. So do not misunderstand the word passion. It is not an ugly word; it is not a thing you can buy in the market or talk about romantically.
It has nothing whatever to do with emotion, feeling. It is not a respectable thing; it is a flame that destroys anything that is false. And we are always so afraid to allow that flame to devour the things that we hold dear, the things that we call important.
After all, the lives we lead at present, based on needs, desires, and the ways of controlling desire, make us more shallow and empty than ever. We may be very clever, very learned, able to repeat what we have gathered, but the electronic machines are doing that, and already in some fields the machines are more capable than man, more accurate and swifter in their calculations.
So we always come back to the same thing which is that life as we live it now is so very narrow, superficial, limited, all because deep down we are empty, lonely, and always trying to cover it up, to fill up that emptiness; therefore, the need, the desire becomes a terrible thing.
Nothing can fill that deep void within no gods, no saviors, no knowledge, no relationship, no children, no husband, no wife nothing. But if the mind, the brain, the whole of your being can look at it, live with it, then you will see that psychologically, inwardly, there is no need for anything. That is true freedom. But that requires very deep insight, profound inquiry, ceaseless watching; and out of that perhaps we shall know what love is.
How can there be love when there is attachment, jealousy, envy, ambition, and all the pretense which goes with that word? Then, if we have gone through that emptiness which is an actuality, not a myth, not an idea we shall find that love and desire and passion are the same thing. If you destroy one, you destroy the other; if you corrupt one, you corrupt beauty. To go into all this requires, not a detached mind, not a dedicated mind or a religious mind, but a mind that is inquiring, that is never satisfied, that is always looking, watching, observing itself, knowing itself. Without love you will never find out what truth is.