In the last few years I have gone from being a great consumer of things to being rather absurdly satisfied with what I have.
In funny ways it bothers me sometimes, this 'not wanting' (one does miss the pleasure of purchasing some coveted item and having that fleeting sense of all being right in the world. And there are just so many beautiful things to be had..), but I fully recognize how much bigger the satisfaction I have in daily life is than that momentary feeling ever was.
A new pair of shoes is amazing, but a complete sense of faith and satisfaction with where you are in life is so incomparably much more.
Historically, I have been driven by a sense of wanting, of incompleteness. My desires surrounding work, personal image, accomplishment, relationships and material experience have come from a sense of lack, accompanied by the belief that the experiencing of another reality in which wishes were fulfilled would be the cause of my happiness.
I did, for a very long time, truly believe that an Audi would make me feel like a success.
But my teacher, many years ago after I returned to Canada, informed me that I had the sequence of things mixed up, and I had to reassert the motivation for my actions in a manner aligned with spirit.
This confused me at first, of course. Her lessons often had that effect. But after considerable meditation and contemplation (and, as always, trial and error) I understood fully.
If we approach our goals with the feeling that there is something already unfulfilled in us and that that thing (whatever it may be) will provide us with satisfaction and meaning, we will forever be chasing. Just merely the thought that we are incomplete right away induces craving and want, and places the power of determining our happiness on something outside of ourselves.
However, if we ask ourselves how we can give more of us to the world in service; how we can offer up more of our skills, talents, love, and possibility to the whole (and, of course, to ourselves as part of that whole) then the path becomes one of increasing growth AND simultaneous satisfaction in the moment as it is.
This is the great paradox of the process of spiritual so-called 'growth'. Yes, we develop and increase our consciousness and release limiting beliefs and patterns that have held us in a particular dimensional experience, but those were never really part of us to begin with. The whole process brings us back to the place of seeing that we have been whole the entire time. Nothing has ever been lacking except our ability to perceive our own innate perfection.
Living simply is said to be the realm of those who exist with a Shamanic grounding. This doesn't mean that we live in cardboard boxes and shun beautiful food or the like. No, quite the contrary.
It just means that we intend to live from a place of wholeness and of right relationship in life, where we are aware of the reality of reciprocity: where what we receive is directly proportionate to what we give.
If you desire to live in this way, the only way to it is to pay attention to what you are giving, not what might be received or desired. To attend to the desire to be the fullest expression of all your gifts made manifest in the world, and have faith, from there, that you will be taken care of.
Wanting is not our true state.
Simplicity. Clarity. Service.. these are what our souls are born into the world through.