"I need."

The both tragic and liberating truth is that the vast majority of our wounds are self-inflicted.

If you could not think the thought, "I need so and so to...," then everybody would be spared from relationship drama and turmoil. You would easily let others be free and not get bent out of shape if and when they fail to live up to your expectations and definitions of right and wrong.

In fact, this tiny phrase, "I need," is right there near the bottom of the intricate labyrinth of psycho-spiritual disease pathology, in the not-at-ease sense.

"I need" is a statement of poverty. Before its utterance, comes a belief that this moment is missing something and that you have the answer to what that is (two beliefs to aggressively question). So, you bundle up into your personal sense of self and start pushing against the boulder of reality with your will, all in an effort to get your needs met and feel satisfied.

Just like paddling upstream, with enough grit and determination, you can make some progress this way (and society will pat you on the back for your successes). The problem? You are working with a limited source of power and you will burn out, no different than trying to run a marathon at full sprint.

Instead, what if you could dissolve "I need" from your vocabulary, and from your heart? Wouldn't that accomplish the same thing as the other strategy, except in a more sustainable way?

It's possible and it starts by getting deeply curious about the nature of this moment—the right here and right now. After getting still, you can ask questions like, "What in this moment is lacking?" "What needs to change?" "What is not perfect?"

Properly posed, even in the midst of great difficulty and personal challenge, you will likely come to see there is nothing incomplete in this moment. It is whole—impossible to be improved upon or diminished. This moment just is. To label it would be to tell a story, which is a joy for the poets, and a bane for seekers after truth.

If you can really get this, you can further understand that you need nothing. You already have everything right here and now. That is coming home and returning to zero.

What you perceive as lack is nothing more than dust on your lenses, preventing you from seeing clearly. Instead of chase the false "I need" thought, why not wipe your lenses clean?