Sadhguru explains that desire is not the source of misery but rather unfulfilled desire is. If one attempts to destroy their desires all it will produce is a great desire to destroy all their desires which leaves one eternally unfulfilled.

Questioner: Dear Sadhguru, it is well known that desire is the cause of all sorrows and tension. But being a wife and a mother I can’t get rid of these desires. I seek your valuable advice in this regard. Thank you.

Sadhguru: Now, it’s not because you’re a wife and in turn a mother that your desires have come. If you were nobody’s wife, probably your were desiring, when you were nobody’s wife, you were desiring to be somebody’s wife. Now that you’re somebody’s wife, you desire to have a child and become a mother. Now that you have a child, now you’re saying, “It is these two entities which is making me desire”. It is not true. If you are nobody’s nothing, even then your desire will still burn within you, is that so? Yes or no? If you are nothing to nobody in the world, still your desire will burn, isn’t it? So please don’t think your desires are because of your child or your husband or your family or whatever. Anyway you would desire, because that’s your nature.

Now you made a statement in the question that “desire is the source of all misery”. Desire is not the source of all misery, unfulfilled desire is the source of all misery isn’t it? Isn’t it so? Desires fulfilled are the source of your joy, unfulfilled desires is the source of your misery. Now, what to do with the desire? Shall we kill the desire? I know people have been teaching you such things, “You must kill all your desires. Unless you destroy your desires, your misery will not go.” These teachings have come to you, isn’t it? Now, if you want to destroy all your desires, all you will have is, you will have a great desire to destroy all your desires. And you will remain eternally unfulfilled. “I don’t want any desires!” is this a desire? Is this a desire or no? Yes. So if you try to play tricks with this, it is not going to work. Because desire is not desiring for anything in particular. The energy which you call as desire is not different from the energy that you call as life. If you want to move from point A to point B, you need a desire, isn’t it? Now what brought you here today, it is not your bus or car or something else. It is your desire which has brought you here today, isn’t it? What is it that will take you home? It is your desire that will take you home. What is it that will make you eat? It is your desire which will make you eat.

So what you call as desire is not different from what you call as life. Your life is desire. The very basis of your life is desire, isn’t it? So if I tell you “Kill the desire”, the only way is to hang yourself. There is really no other way. Now, “I want to die”, that is also a desire, isn’t it? Yes or no? So do not deceive yourself with these things. Desire is the very essence of your life. But at the same time you also know that desire is an unending thing. If you fulfill one, the next one will be ready. If you fulfill that, the next one will be ready. It keeps you on all the time. And obviously some desires will be unfulfilled and those unfulfilled desires cause much misery to you.

If you look at the desire, actually when we started, this is what we were looking at, we just did not use the word “desire”. There is something within you longing to be little more than what you are right now. That is desire. So your desire’s ultimate goal is unboundedness, the infinite nature. But because you’re unaware, you are giving it an unconscious expression for the longing that is wanting to become unbounded. So you don’t have to destroy your desire, because you cannot. Can anybody destroy their desire? Is it possible? There is no way because that’s life. It is just that you have to make your desire into a conscious process. Right now it is functioning unconsciously because right now your desire is not even about you. Please look at this. Right now you’re living in Trivandrum or Tirivunathapuram, your neighbor has a big car, what is your desire? You want to have two cars like that. Now you don’t know all these cars, you are living in a remote place and your neighbor has one big buffalo. What is your desire? You want to have two buffaloes like that. So your desire is just a reaction to the social situations in which you’re living, isn’t it? This is so because this longing to expand is finding unconscious expression.

If you make your process of desiring into a conscious process, then desire is no more a problem. Then desire is a wonderful vehicle which will take you places. Even if you want to reach the ultimate you need a desire, isn’t it? Yes or no? Anyway the desire in you is longing for unboundedness, it is longing for unlimitedness, it is longing for the ultimate nature. You just have to bring awareness to it. If you bring awareness to your desiring process, it is a wonderful instrument. If it is finding unconscious expression, then it makes you run like madman. All the time it keeps you running endlessly.

So, being a wife, being a mother, it’s extremely important. Now that you’re a mother, not a small responsibility. You brought another human being into this planet. Now what kind of human being you produce is a very huge responsibility isn’t it? It is not just about reproduction, what kind of next generation you create is in your hand, as a mother, isn’t it? Yes? What kind of people are going to live on this planet in the next generation is decided by the mothers of today, isn’t it? When such a responsibility you have, you cannot afford to live unconsciously. You must become conscious. Especially the women must become conscious. It’s very, very important.