Question: What is the difference between desire and aspiration?Sri Chinmoy: Aspiration is our inner cry. The outer cry is the cry for name, fame, power and material prosperity. This is called desire. When we cry for peace, light, bliss and other divine things, this is aspiration. When we do not care for things that bind us, we have aspiration. With desire we try to bind others, but soon we discover that we ourselves are already bound. This is what desire does. When we aspire, we come to realise that we have to free ourselves and we have to free others. The more we free ourselves from the meshes of ignorance, the clearer becomes our vision. We feel that it is only through the expansion of our consciousness that we can have abiding peace within us. Aspiration is the inner cry that carries us to the Highest and also offers the message of total divine fulfilment here on earth. Aspiration deals with Eternity, Infinity and Immortality, whereas desire deals with a dollar, a house, a car or some other worldly thing. Aspiration deals with infinite Peace, Light and Bliss. Unless and until we have achieved this Peace, Light and Bliss we shall not be satisfied, no matter what we get from the material world. For everlasting Peace, Bliss and the sense of fulfilment, the thing that we need, the thing that is of paramount importance in our life, is aspiration, the inner flame which each of us has.
Sri Chinmoy, Fifty Freedom-Boats to one Golden Shore, part 6, Agni Press, 1975