Desire: a longing or craving, as for something that brings satisfaction or enjoyment.
Need: urgent want, as of something requisite
The meaning and the understanding of these two words and the way people perceive them has always been of interest to me. It’s a vicious trap that these two words weave around us and how simply we tend to fall in the cobweb of what we actually need and the things that we desire. Let me take my own example. As a kid I always had a desire to own a motorbike. I would muse over it for hours together and the desire would keep growing with every passing year. I used to own a cycle at that time. Then, in the first year of my college, my Dad (after a lot of coaxing) agreed to let me buy a bike, my dream bike at that time, the CBZ. I was on cloud 9 (although, the bike came with the compulsion of a Helmet). After a week, I realized that I did not touch my cycle since I got the bike. My need and the only source of commuting in the neighborhood had changed. After a month, my “Desired” CBZ became my “Needed” CBZ and my cycle which was my “Need” fell out of the equation totally. It was like a life overhaul. I had upgraded my life and was pretty happy with it for two more years. And then came the antagonist again, the Desire, to buy a car. And I started dreaming that I would one day own and drive a car that is my own. And my mind started to fuel my desire by painting a fake picture that I needed a car.
And the reasons? Well, I forget my helmet most of the times (though I mostly left it behind), The traffic in Nagpur has gone from bad to worse (and I was a contributor to that, all thanks to my 150CC bike ;-)) and so it was not safe to ride a bike anymore and so on and so forth. Again, I started to convince myself as well as my folks to buy me a car and that a car is the Need of the hour (LOLz …). And then finally my folks agreed to let me buy a car and I was again on cloud9.
Today, it’s been almost 3 years that I have owned a car. An overhaul that has cost me a lot in monetary terms and otherwise, and just as I sat on the steering wheel of my car this morning I had a small conversation with my own self.
The inner voice: Do I really “need” this car?
Me: Of course you do.
Inner voice: I don’t think so, I could manage everything with my bike.
Me: Yes, you can but look at the traffic, pollution, and you always forget the helmet, remember?
Inner voice: Well, It could be taken care of if you drive safely (and a bit slow), which brings me to another question, do you think you drive your car as safely as you should?
Me: See, I guess I gotta be going, I’m getting late for office. We’ll discuss it next time, OK?
And with this I turn on my car’s stereo louder so that my stupid inner voice would not bug me (or in other words, would not embarrass me), and I start to sing along with the music.
Ignorance is Bliss someone has rightly said, and I realize it, because today I own a cycle, a bike (A bullet, the desire thing weaves magic again) and a car. The irony of it all hits me hard as I reveal the name of my car, Maruti Swift-DZire. Need or Desire … ??? Please enlighten me …