The 7 Things Everyone Wants

Huff Post: Rabbi Adam Jacobs.

Then I grasped the meaning of the greatest secret that human poetry and human thought and belief have to impart: The salvation of man is through love and in love. I understood how a man who has nothing left in this world still may know bliss, be it only for a brief moment, in the contemplation of his beloved. In a position of utter desolation, when man cannot express himself in positive action, when his only achievement may consist in enduring his sufferings in the right way — an honorable way — in such a position man can, through loving contemplation of the image he carries of his beloved, achieve fulfillment.

I recently came across a fascinating (to me) quote by Lady Gaga: “I want women — and men — to feel empowered by a deeper and more psychotic part of themselves. The part they’re always trying desperately to hide. I want that to become something that they cherish.” Now, while I certainly have no issue with the idea of people working toward feeling empowered by a “deeper” side of themselves — an art which at this point in history is about as common as butter-churning — I have to wonder why she wants to encourage psychosis, essentially a loss of contact with reality. While I do believe that a great many people already spend enormous time, toil and treasure actively engaged in divorcing themselves from reality, I also believe that they are rewarded with pain, anger and fear for those efforts. At the end of the day, I suspect that Ms. Gaga and myself actually want the same things for people, but that part of what she is offering boils down to a counterfeit version of the seven essential categories of what every member of the human race truly wants.

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