So What Now? The Problem with Desire.

I now have a series of posts lined up but I’m not sure if I’ll finish any of them, so I’m just going to post stuff as it becomes concise enough to post, which means it will probably be out of order and incoherent as a whole. Also please excuse me if on this post and possibly others I’m just re-writing Pete Rollins in my own words and for my own benefit.

“Wiley Coyote Retires” (which is NSFW unless you work somewhere awesome like Extra Sauce) does a really good job of addressing what happens when one achieves their desire, when their desire is achievable (for example, as we say in the technology startup world, “fuck you money”). Of course those who have had success rarely retire early to their special island, they usually insert themselves into others’ brilliance by becoming an angel investor or venture capitalist or special advisor (which somehow seems like retiring from porn to become a fluffer), or they just go do the exact same thing over again.

Or, as my former business partner Dan and I used to joke, they develop a mandatory coke habit. And the idea that having enough money means a freedom from anxiety about money just isn’t true. Besides, where would you be without all that misplaced anxiety? You’d simply misplace it elsewhere. Billionaires and soccer moms and spoiled children are all pretty much the same thing.

Pete’s answer to this problem is:

Perhaps there is another possibility, if we are lucky enough to find it. And that is in finding and being with the one we love. In being with the one we love we gain what we desire while remaining at a distance from it. When we love someone they are present to us as a mystery. They are the opening to, and encounter with, otherness itself. They are a vast and endless ocean.

Which at the moment just leaves me here in my loss, and in my fears of potential loss. (Pete is probably talking about an existential love with some more abstract “other” but I’ll allow him his own continued thinking on these matters and not conjecture further on his conclusions.)

I feel like I’m close to wrapping my head around a third way that might illuminate a way forward. This stuff gets all smashed together with meaning and identity formation… [to be continued]