L is for Longing

What is the feeling of longing? Is it wanting something a lot? Where is the line where something goes from being wanted to being longed for?

Photo by Александр Прокофьев from Pexels.com

For me, I guess, a want is something concrete. I want to do this thing or I want this person.

“The sea always filled her with longing, though for what she was never sure.”

Cornelia Funke

I think longing is more abstract and wishful and just out of view. It’s what we feel when we look at a beautiful sight or wake up from a dream that we can’t quite remember.

While I was trying to define it for myself, I happened across this article. Sehnsucht is a term that I had never heard before but it feels right to me.

It means yearning or desire or craving, but the idea goes farther than that.

In my words, Sehnsucht has to do with an intense desire for something beyond our human capacity to fulfill. It is a sense that something is missing – something that, if fulfilled, would make everything complete.

Andy Tix Ph.D.

This really makes sense to me. We all have that little feeling that we want more, but putting our finger on the more is really difficult. And the more is as unique as each person.

So longing? To me, it is the thing that keeps us looking forward, striving to explore and dreaming.


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