Death and Desire - Mirza Ghalib and Emily Dickinson

I stumbled upon this beautiful poem by Emily Dickinson. In this poem she writes about the desire of the heart and how it evolves as we go through life:

The Heart asks Pleasure – first –
And then – Excuse from Pain –
And then – those little Anodynes
That deaden suffering –

And then – to go to sleep –
And then – if it should be
The will of its Inquisitor
The liberty to die –

The first and foremost desire of the heart is pleasure, which is the ultimate goal of every human being. However, when pleasure is unattainable, the heart seeks to avoid pain and live a life free from suffering.

But what happens when pain is unavoidable? The heart then longs for "Anodynes," or painkillers, to ease its discomfort. The word "Anodyne" stems from the Greek for "without pain," and it represents the heart's desperate plea for relief. Yet, even when anodynes fail, the heart does not give up hope. It seeks the escape of sleep or unconsciousness to find some solace.

But what if sleep fails to soothe one's ills? What if the pain is too great to bear, and there seems to be no end in sight? At this point, the heart's only remaining desire is for death to bring it the ultimate release. It is a desperate plea for liberty, a way to end the suffering once and for all.

In the end, the heart turns to the Inquisitor, a religious figure who represents the ultimate Inquisitor, God (or Death), for help. The Inquisitor is the only one who can bring an end to the heart's pain and grant it the peace it seeks.

So the desires of the heart eventually find solace in death.  Death is the ultimate cure for all desires. 

In somewhat contrasting light, Mirza Ghalib relates desires to death:

Hazaron Khwahishen Aisi Ke Har, Ke Har Khwahish Pe Dam Nikle
I have thousands of desires, and each desire to die for
I have lost so many wishes, but I have still a lot more


Death is the ultimate cure for all desires

The idea that death is the ultimate cure for all desires is a common theme in literature and philosophy. It suggests that death is the final and ultimate end to all of our earthly struggles and desires. This is a belief that has been held by many cultures and religions throughout history.

One interpretation of this idea is that death is the ultimate release from suffering. All of our desires, whether they are for pleasure, love, success, or something else entirely, are ultimately driven by a desire to avoid suffering. We seek pleasure to avoid pain, we seek love to avoid loneliness, and we seek success to avoid failure. However, no matter how much we try to satisfy our desires, there will always be some degree of suffering in our lives. Death, therefore, is seen as the ultimate release from this suffering. It is the final cure for all our earthly desires and a way to achieve the ultimate peace.

Another interpretation of this idea is that death is the ultimate equalizer. No matter how rich, powerful, or successful we are in life, we all face the same fate in death. In this sense, death is seen as the ultimate leveler, the great equalizer that puts everyone on an even playing field. It is the one thing that we all have in common, regardless of our differences in life.

While the idea that death is the ultimate cure for all desires may seem bleak or pessimistic, it can also be seen as a reminder to appreciate the time we have on this earth and to make the most of it. Rather than chasing after unattainable desires, we can focus on living our lives in a way that brings us joy and fulfillment, knowing that in the end, death will come for us all. By accepting this reality, we can find peace and meaning in the present moment, rather than constantly striving for something more.