The Fires of Desire

ImageHow does one quantify the power of desire? Is desire the mightiest force of humanity? Who can put out its flame?

It is beautiful and grotesque. Desire moves mountains and crushes civilizations. It finds truth and demolishes knowledge. Strangely it cares for the poor and commits atrocities.

Desire finds God and erases the creation. It embraces the newborn and crushes its skull.

What can moderate this force? Who will use it for good and decline from evil? Why is so little done to harness it?

How do we moderate this force? Is the answer conscience, love, or God?

Conscience is a great possibility. Desire can be restrained to some degree by conscience. However, is strong enough? I think it works but where is it vulnerable? Conscience is a variable controlled by cultural norms. We may agree that hurting a person is bad but what if they have offended us or abuse us? Many times culture says it is right to get your vindications by words or force. Sometimes culture encourages hurting others and we feel no remorse because we are right. We conclude that it is good but is there something better?

Love has a great chance at quenching this destructive blaze. If we measure all our actions with love desire can be kept at bay. But we still interpret. Love can become simply what we want it to be. We need clarification. I like what Jesus says “love your neighbor as yourself.” This helps clarify but it needs more. What holds us to the concept of sacrificial love?

God is a great reason to continue in love. Some may prefer the idea of loving as an expression of love and devotion to God and others need the reminder of punishment. You pick what works best yet do not be confused they are both operative.

There is another moderator of desire: The heart of God. God’s desire is perfect. What if we take on the desire of God as our desire. As he is self-givng we will be like Him. You see having your desire met is great, it feels good. We can change our desire to be the same as God’s. I think this is stronger, beyond cultural moral relativity and is beyond the law of love. Pleasing God is good but the greatest force against desire’s devastating flame is to make His desire ours.

Desires potential to ravage is stamped out when we have a new desire: self-giving and sacrificial. We will enjoy the pleasure of having our desire fulfilled as God’s love becomes our  desire. This enslaves the desire that destroys and frees the desire that quenches all the flames of evil.

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