All human attachment (and in effect, suffering) can be distilled into three primary categories: Needs, Wants, and Desires.
Needs can be classified as the resources required for maintaining one’s own safety and security — food, water, and shelter can all be lumped into this category. They are the must-have’s for sustaining life. Satiating Needs, one can begin to look into Wants. Wants can be classified as our relationship towards people, places and things; this measures how we see our partner, our favourite restaurant, even our dream car. Wants are the hedonic pleasures we aim to achieve once our Needs have been fulfilled. Acquiring Wants, we can look more into Desires. Desires represent how we see ourselves — the proverbial “status symbol of I.” This would be our job, our accomplishments, and our overall self-identity. Who exactly do I see myself as and have I become that?
The caveat here is that, within each of these three categories, we find ourselves scrambling up a forever-liberating mountain; doomed to repeat our liberation-from-suffering like Sisyphus trying to push his boulder uphill.
“Sure, my house is great, but I wish it were a little more…” “I guess my partner is fine, but I wish they were a bit less…” “Well, my job is pretty good, but I think it would be better if I…” And so on, ad infinitum, as we get caught up in the spiral of mind.
So, how does one triumph over this incessant struggle towards attachment; thereby alleviating themselves from suffering? Love. The only force powerful enough to push that boulder over the hill and watch it cruise down effortlessly is Love. Love is the only force that is able to change the way we perceive our attached states (ergo, our suffering) and allow us to realize the true divinity present within each of these three categories. When we peer through the lens of Love, we realize that we do have enough and that our attachment is nothing more than a figment of the craving-mind.
From Need — through Love — we transform a house into a home.
From Want — through Love — we transform a lover into the beloved.
From Desire — through Love — we transform a job into a vocation.
Each of these same categories, transformed through the lens of Love.
By appreciating and accepting what we do have, we are freed from our attachment towards changing anything. For, what is there to change, if everything is already as it ever could or should be? It is only the craving-mind that wishes for anything to be otherwise.
So, learn to put aside the mind; learn to re-focus all Needs, Wants, and Desires; and simply live in the here and now — fully contented, fully present, in each passing moment.
It’s just a matter of if you can see through the correct lens or not!