Wanderlust. A strong desire or impulse to wander or travel the world. Generally paired with the girly ideals of seemingly graceful map-of-the-world tattoos, necklaces with delicate little mountains, watches with airplanes as hands, mountain-background Instagram photos with the word rhythmically sprawled across the image in flowy golden letters, both the idea and the very word “Wanderlust” are seeping into the minds of those who seem to desire so deeply only one thing: To travel.
And, let’s be real. I would be lying if I said I too were not struck with the lingering desire to go beyond what I’ve experienced already and go somewhere new and refreshing where I can be whoever I want to be and experience something I will never experience where I currently am now. After all, we are the generation that travels. But, I ask, can we get beyond the word “travel”? Can we talk about the second part of that little word for a second; the term “lust”?
In no culture ever has the word “lust” ever been conceived in good connotation. It is unhealthy, irrational, and dehumanizing; simplistic and thoughtless. Those who lust after someone or something will often do what it takes in order to get that pleasure. Lust can be sparked by jealousy, by greed, by the inability to maintain self-control. It is one of the seven deadly sins for a reason, folks.
Does your mind become nearly consumed with the idea of going somewhere, but doesn’t think beyond the very act of going? This, in essence, is what wanderlust seems to encompass.
I guess I’m just tired of a culture that is so thoughtless.
One of the most humanizing things about spending time in Costa Rica was experiencing how differently the Ticos lived in comparison with to the image of Costa Rica that so often pops into people’s minds. The average person lives in deep separation of exotic beach resorts, nightly piña coladas, and coconut-rich palm trees ready to give in a beachy back yard. Within my short time in the beautiful land, I quickly realized that there is not one, but two Costa Ricas: Tourist Costa Rica and Costa Rica of the natives. Only one of them is real.
Identify with something greater than “wanderlust”. Go somewhere to learn. Go to experience, go to give. Let it shape your ideals, allow the experience to seep into your soul and make you think. Think about who you are, where you’re going, who you want to be. Traveling is extremely humbling if you let it.