I do have great desire, my desire is great - but also, Steve's quote resonates, the ideal of "few desires" has a powerful pull, I'd like to aspire to that.
So am I oxymoronic?
Maybe theres a distinction between desire and desires? In the sense that my great desire is not for objects or even for specific pre-defined targets, but for experience - for living life to the full and for the wonder of the world, for love and friendship most especially and for beauty.
Though that does translate into particular desires.... the desire, especially to travel.
And its important for me to be able to state these desires, having recently (and thankfully) begun to grow out of a view of the world dominated too much by duty and an out-of-kilter work ethic.
And I guess thats another part of the distinction - balance; in my case balancing duty and desire and seeking out unattained desires but not "extensively" as Steve's quote says. Or at the very least, not at the expense of other people or other values. Including duty.
So does my desire translate into "seeking to gain a lot"? does it bring with it more afflictions?
Well, I guess that partly depends on openness. Everything is experience, and the wonder of the world, love friendship and beauty are everywhere if we are open to watch and listen and feel.
Extensively seeking out desires could certainly get in the way of that.
I'd like to travel worldwide.
I hope to visit the States again before too long.
I would LOVE to visit people I love in Australia, I have a nice little itinerary mapped out in my head and frequently contemplate strategies which could help it to happen ...
I have a good friend who knows India well and has offered to take me on a tour some time.
M has a friend in Japan who has offered hospitality...
These are desires. Pretty substantial ones actually. And I would regret it if none of them are fulfilled. But I don't think it would be a regret strong enough to afflict me.
I accept that these trips might well never happen and if they don't, it will be at least partly because I am doing other things, experiencing life and wonder and love and friendship in other ways and places. So long as I'm not too wrapped up in duty to recognise it and to live it.
So, am I oxymoronic? I'm really not sure. This is more thinking than I'd planned to do today.