I thought of I want as a feeling coming from something felt to be lacking; a desire for what I thought would fulfill the lack. Some answers to this question were: a job, financial independence, and continued good health. There were moments when no answer came forth, and in those moments I seemed to have no wants, the question seemed unnecessary, even superfluous.
I thought of I need as essential, more basic than a want. And so my answer to this question was that I had a need to feel a sense of comfort or safety, I needed to relax my tense focus on finances and safety issues, I needed to open up and appreciate the benefits of space, what is ‘already here‘ with less emphasis on the concerns I construct.
But “I want” and “I need” both seem to be stories that I narrate at some level, and upon further investigation the distinction that one is more basic than the other seemed to be another story I tell, a qualifying narrative simply to make sense of two different words. Both ‘needs’ and ‘wants’ refer back to a center, a location in time that seems to keep renewing and reestablishing as sensual experience continues.
I was listening to some jazz music, and I sat back to observe the play of sound in space, and I noticed the instrumental accompaniment to the melody was a kind of narrative, carrying the context within which the ‘meaning’ or the melody told it’s tale in rhythmic time. In that moment I saw how my stories were similarly directional in time, carried along as stories connected to other stories as they built a kind of momentum, referring from past to future with emotional urgency, particularly around safety and security of this feeling of ‘me’. I also saw how that experience of listening to jazz was one model pointing to another, my description of the narrative experience here, and organized and ordered around my sense of me — examples of models atop models that the readings refers to. Swimming in the music of my own telling, trying to remember to listen to the silence in between, moving sometimes in opposition to, and also ‘with’ the flow of experience, and sometimes even ‘as’ the flow…