Hydraulic Organ, Villa D'Este, ItalyIndividuals speak of desire and love as though they knew what these things were; and, to a certainty, every man and woman knows what desire is, because we live with in it.
But to speak of love; well, this is a different thing. The first thing a man who has tasted real love, the love of God, will admit to is that he does not know how to speak of love; and yet, we try. Because to speak of God's love is to speak of the most vital principle in the universe, something so vital that we can barely even breathe it in and out, yet that is the only way we can take it in within the body.
This breathing is not a breathing of the lungs; it is the breath of the soul that takes in the love of God and exhales it. This is what sustains us; if we live in an inward sense, if there is any touch of grace within us, we breathe it in and out through the soul, and the air that we take in is this love of God which suffuses us.
We are always perpetually confused by our desires, which we think to have something to do with love. All the things we want; every material thing that sustains material existence; we have our desire for this confused with the love of God, because we are trapped within the cyclical relationships of materiality, desire, and power. These are the three great forces that rule over our bodies, our will, and what we think we are as human beings. Yet — no matter how absolutely valid and necessary these conditions and circumstances are — we do not realize that there is a much greater sphere, a higher triad, which can affect us, that of Being, purification, and wisdom. The breath of God's love, as it flows through the soul, can sustain our search within this higher realm of effort, but only if we sense it and come to it on bended knee.
Throughout the ages, one of the traditional ways of coming to the love of God has been through the denial of desires, yet this is at best a flawed path. We cannot banish desires; on this level, they are necessary. But we shouldn't confuse them with love.
Here is the difference between sacred impulses and impulses that rule the ordinary. It takes a transformation of organic sensation to understand the difference between these two; and it requires a new relationship with feeling which we don't usually have, and more likely have just heard stories about, without ever actually experiencing it.
These things can change; but it's impossible to just think about changing them, nothing changes through thinking. It is impossible to change them through doing things about it, either; we can't do anything in this sense, it is like hitting iron with iron. It makes great noise, but the forces are equal, and nothing actually happens. Even if the iron bends itself and takes a different shape, both sides are still iron.
Think about this. Iron cannot breathe the love of God in and out. We are like iron; but we don't see that. Iron is the best that we can achieve; and yet it isn't gold. Something much greater is needed for gold to appear, in the same way that an ordinary solar process of fusion can only produce iron. The sun has to give itself up in order for gold to be produced.