This time of year is sometimes difficult; it is time for warmth but it is still cold. The sun is shining, but the wind is blustery and bitter. Sitting inside by the fire the day looks beautiful but out in the forest nature soon reminds us that it is unforgiving. And so we sit wanting something that we know we cannot have. We do this and all the time know that it is a waste of that most precious commodity: time itself.
Days spent pining over the past or looking toward the future are days wasted. The thought is a bit Buddhistic, but goes beyond the confines of any religion because the act is human. Perhaps we are hardwired to desire what we do not have. This desire comes, often enough, in the form of “keeping up with the Jones”. It rears its ubiquitous head in many ways though. I would argue that the mess that is our government today is a consequence of wanting what you don’t need rather than needing what you want.
Think of it another way. We need food, we need shelter…that’s it. But we want so much more. These desires will always come at a cost, however. The more we want, the more we need to understand that nothing is free. If we want to be moral we must need to be moral. If we want truth, we must need truth. Of course, we need both, but so many times we do not want either.
Looking out the window and wanting the warmth of Spring will not bring Spring any closer. Knowing the right thing to do and not actually doing the right thing will not make us moral. These philosophical ponderings will do no good unless we act upon them. We must want to act and act in order to know what we need. This is, perhaps, the secret. By all means think, but if we want to know what we need we must also act.