Last Night I Googled Longing
Last night I googled longing.
What I found surprised me. Ninety-five percent of the images were women: Women dreaming. Women staring out windows. Women brushing their golden hair beneath the full moon. Oh… and lots of Goddesses.
Where were the men?
Hunting buffalo? Watching the Superbowl? Mowing the lawn?
OK. So, maybe men don’t stare out windows and wait for their wives to return home from war, but surely they are feeling something. Surely, men want more out of life than just a cheeseburger and tattoo. No?
Based on Google’s algorithm and my own observations over the past few decades, most men consider longing to be a girly thing – a sign of weakness. Soft. Unmanly.
This just in: Longing is not a girly thing. It is not a sign of weakness. It’s a sign of strength – a natural expression of what it means to be a human being.
“Feeling and longing are the motive forces behind all human endeavor and human creations.” — Albert Einstein
But before I go on, let me make one thing abundantly clear – when I refer to longing I am not referring to a poetic kind of eye-rolling desire or a faux beatific wanting. I am talking about something else — the innate, ancient, holy, soul-infused, irreducible, on-fire, uncontainable, off-the-grid, socially unacceptable, messy, irreverent, moon-howling, highly uncomfortable, often unhinged, not-conversation-fodder-for-the-first date, unbridled aching for something timeless, pure, and unconditional.
“There is a space between man’s imagination and man’s attainment that may only be traversed by his longing.” — Kahlil Gibran
Poets write about it, but it has nothing to do with words. Composers symphonize about it, but it has nothing to do with notes. Artists paint about it, but it has nothing to do with color.
Feeling. Deep deep feeling. The heart’s intuitive aspiration for the very best life has to offer. That’s what I’m talking about.