How much is enough?

What’s the strongest feeling in the world?

Love?

Wrong!

It’s hunger.

What’s the 2nd strongest feeling in this world?

Love?

Wrong!

It’s greed.

In between hunger and greed, all other feelings and emotions float in the ocean of desire. Yet, this ocean squeezes into a droplet in the blink of an eye once hunger is fulfilled. Greed starts taking over.

Human life in a nutshell is a struggle to overcome hunger and to not succumb to greed; the perfect balance. Not everyone however is able to cope up to the pressures of maintaining this balance. It’s like a necessity to reach a particular speed while driving a car and then to resist the temptation of over speeding knowing it may leave you with no time to slow down resulting in the car crashing into a wall.

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Where did love go in all this?

Let’s treat it as an object more than an emotion. An object which we are hungry for and consider something a necessity for life. An object which when acquired makes you want more. Just like money or time or lust or chocolate maybe. So there’s hunger for love and then there’s greed for the same. It’s ridiculously astounding but it’s absolutely true for a lot of us claiming to be one of the most civilized creatures on the face of the planet.

That moment when hunger turns into greed, that very fine line is very difficult to notice and usually goes by without us realizing. If only we have the power to control. Oh but we do! It’s just the submission of all powers to these two feelings that leaves us so frail. Interestingly, it can very well be the hunger for power itself that takes our mind away from our own power to resist becoming greedy for the same.

It’s both a process in sequence and a complete dichotomy in itself if looked at closely. Hunger for certain objects is good, inevitable even. Greed on the other hand usually symbolizes a state where there’s an urge to go beyond certain boundaries when there isn’t a necessity to do so. Hunger for recognition for instance will make you work more, greed for the same may push you to discredit others. Hunger may come naturally whereas greed is a self-induced extension of the former. In today’s world, it may also work the other way round. An interesting line I read somewhere said, ‘One man’s greed leads to another man’s hunger.’

I’m freaking you out with all this, aren’t I? I’ll tell you what’s more terrifying. It’s that I’ve just told the truth and as complex as it seems, I’ve only made an effort to simplify it.

Hammad A. Mateen

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2 responses to “How much is enough?

  1. Insightful. Soul searching. Solution to this complex issue in this complex world in my mind though: ‘ISLAM’

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