24 Jan
Posted in: Homework
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But I NEED It!

The next link in the chain of Dependent Co-Arising is upadana, usually translated as “clinging.” The previous link, “craving,” has a directional momentum to it, and when that impulse to move becomes intense (which it almost always seems to do), craving turns into “clinging.”

Clinging to sensuality or sense objects is one of the ways we create suffering for ourselves. Christina Feldman says, “Pleasant feelings, rather than satisfying us and making us feel this way or that, often produce a desire for more as well as a desire to hold on, which in turn creates more clinging.”

But the feeling that this is something I need is pretty convincing.

Christina goes on to say, “I think there’s an easy way to distingue between craving and valid need, and this is that one can be satisfied and the other can’t. If you’re very hungry and you eat, it’s enough, right? The hunger is gone and you move on. If it’s an insatiable hunger, say, or addition to food, that’s never satisfied.

“If you have a valid need to eat, sleep, to be sheltered…your pathway is often very clear. It’s not complicated. But that doesn’t seem to be true of craving. There’s a kind of floundering, obsessiveness, busy-ness around it. It’s not so simple.”

Upadana is also translated as “grasping,” or “attachment.” But I like the literation of “craving” and “clinging,” so for the DPP homework, I’ll stick with “clinging.”

(image: Tarot of the Witches)

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