"Three things are necessary for the salvation of man;
to know what he ought to believe,
to know what he ought to desire,
and to know what he ought to do."
-- Thomas Aquinas
Copyright © 2014 by Ralph F. Couey
Except cited and quoted portions.
Every human ever born came into this life with a dream. Separated from all the other wants and desires, it is a dream that arises from the recognition by the soul of the gifts and talents singular to that person. Essentially, it is the assessment of what can be built using the raw materials available.
That collection of specialities is different for every person. My son is a genius of sorts in the computer field. Consequently, his work language is largely mathematical. When I look over his shoulder, I see a page filled with number and notations, pi, theta, delta, sigma, tau, omega... It is a language that, alas, will forever be indecipherable to his father. You could say that it's all...um..."Greek" to me.
I have become a writer, of sorts. No, I haven't written The Great American Novel, though I have been a columnist. While I can't translate mathematics, I have been able to recognize the momentum of thought and emotion from the heart and mind and translate that into words, phrases, and sentences. Most times, that process is slow and frustrating. But occasionally, the walls are felled, the gates are opened, and those impulses flood directly from the heart to the fingers, at a rate which challenges the hands to keep pace.
This is, for all intents and purposes, what I want; my desire, if you will. For everyone else, that desire is particular to each one. It may be the elegance of a perfect equation, or the production of something beautiful from a piece of wood, a lump of clay, a jar of paint. My sister, a career educator, has spoken of that magical moment when a teacher witnesses the light of comprehension dawning in the eyes of a student. I remember the words of a mother after seeing her child, now an adult, graduate from college. "In that moment, I realized that all the effort, all the pain, all the worry and sleepless nights over the last 21 years expended in trying to shape a life had finally been justified. My child has achieved; therefore as a mother, I have also achieved."