Desire is a markedly human trait that is akin to emotion, and it stems from a deep-seated lust for some realization of an outward accomplishment. Life in general and humanity in particular cannot be seen apart from a strong gravitation around Desire. In Genesis, the desire that emanated was at the inception of Sin, where both the man and woman lusted for power and knowledge as represented in the forbidden fruit. It then spiraled into a more dastardly and human form of desiring for acceptance, failing which the first murder was committed.
Desire is amoral; it has the power to achieve good in the right hands, as Lysistrata demonstrates. In Genesis, it holds the power to bring about rejection, death, and disaster. However, one must take note that in the hands of fallen humanity, more often than not, desire appears to be conceived out of covetousness, of jealousy, and wickedness.
Most philosophers and practitioners of psychology would agree that desire manifests itself in three main ways – for mating, a show of power, and fulfillment of purpose (Newsguide.US. “The Psychology of Desire” 10 Dec 2008. Web. 26 May 2010) This reading of Desire falls in line with the earlier references to the Genesis account, where a show of power is evident when Adam and Eve lusted after power, and when Cain exercised wrongful power over his brother’s life. In Lysistrata, the women, led by the character of the same name, held power over the menfolk by denying them sexual favours. This early precursor to the modern-day feminist movement is a compelling foreshadowing of just how much power there lies in the female frustration of desire.
It is therefore an understatement that Desire exists at the very core of our humanity, and society of all ages would do well to recognize its existence and reality in permeating all aspects of behavior, government, and norms.
Aristophanes. Lysistrata. Project Gutenberg, 2008.
The Holy Bible (KJV). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1989.
The Psychology of Desire. Dec 2008. Newsguide.US. 26 May 2010.