Necessities vs. Wants

In our complex world we sometimes lose sight of the fact that basic human needs are simple, and that needs and wants (desires) are two different things. Our “comfort zones” have expanded to gargantuan proportions. In the Caitanya Caritamrta, recounting the history of Mrgari the hunter, Srila Prabhupada writes, “After leaving householder life, one may go to a holy place, such as the bank of the Ganges or Yamuna, and erect a small cottage. A small cottage can be constructed without any expenditure. Four logs serving as pillars can be secured by any man from the forest. The roof can be covered with leaves, and one can cleanse the inside. Thus one can live very peacefully. In any condition, any man can live in a small cottage, plant a tulasi tree, water it in the morning, offer it prayers, and continuously chant the Hare Krishna maha-mantra. Thus one can make vigorous spiritual advancement. This is not at all difficult.”(Madhya 24.261/purport excerpt)