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A perfect God can not desire. A desireless being has no reason to do anything.

From my understanding, desire springs from perceiving a lack of something or a perceived overabundance of something. Maybe this is wrong. Do you have any alternative ideas as to the origin of desire. And if so, do they limit your God which desires?

Anyways, if God is lacking something or has too much of something then in what way is he perfect? Because it seems God is trying to change his state from desiring to achieving his desire. So he is incomplete and craves (maybe even averts) just as the rest of us do.

But if he doesn’t desire. Then what spurs God to move at all?

This post made sound like only questions but my points and position are within the questions so please don’t confuse my post for a non-debate post.

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Mary Johnson
Mary Johnson
I have been reading and writing for over 20 years. My passion is reading and I would like to someday write a novel. I enjoy exercise and shopping.


  1. in secret book of john, desire is bad things…came from “demonic force” reforging to human body…pleasure and stuff..created from matter (material). It is through desire…that negative emotion get trigger anger…dissatisfaction etc…to keep people distracted..
    while in,
    in law of one/spiritual awaken people, they mentioned the existence of mind desire vs heart desire. If i interpret correctly, Mind desire is ..mostly related to society construction/culture you were brought up led to the thinking of something more worthy…like status, power and stuff…. desire with an agenda or rationalize things with logic/common sense..using materialism to fill in the gap while heart desire more genuine -> fun, enjoy…felt at the heart..pure intention…of I want to experience it so i try on it…not because of anything or expected outcome just cause I feel like it. I don’t care what others think.
    Mind desire: let’s say you were raise up in a poor family…and you were treat poorly being called out as”poor girl” in your town…and so..u feel low in self esteem…u thought to urself..I want to play piano because piano is for the rich concept…only rich people get to learn piano…to raise up your self esteem indirectly…I want to date this guy because hes rich …I want to date this guy…i mean why not…i’m single…this could stop my parents from annoyingly nagging me to get a bf…
    things like that
    in contrast,
    Heart desire: I want to sing to express my feelings…I want to date this guy because we resonate or I find him attractive…I want to play flute because I love the sound of it and it makes me feel relax.

    idk…the origin of desire…since we all came here with a mission…the heart desire has to link to it..I personally think heart desire is like guiding each of us to know what our soul (higher self) wants…
    since we are in the veil of forgetfulness. The law is within our heart just like bible said. While mind desire is the counter part the opposite…alteration of the heart desire giving it a veil…its what the society want us to be like and we think by doing what society want us to be like will fulfill our emptiness internally but turns out you still feel empty…over what our heart truly desire. What truly free and open our heart.

    consider how the society keeps telling us to take decision by our mind not heart nor intuition …its funny…

  2. You’re thinking in anthropomorphic terms. Indeed, God need not do anything, but that does not mean He cannot do anything. God does not have our psychology or cognitive processes by which we decide on a particular course of action. God’s will is not contingent, His will is eternal. God is the foundation of reality. If you require yet an additional foundation for God, then you fall into infinite regress. The will of God is just the will of God.

  3. God is active by nature in Christianity. Thus God does not require desire to act. Just as I do not desire to be Human. I am human by nature. My desire is not required for my being human.

    God is active by nature. Either because His actions are intrinsically tied to His nature in Orthodox Theology or because God is actus purus in Catholic Theology.

    Your argument is completely valid, but is only really challenging to particular conceptions of God that do not define God as active by nature. This means you might have to engage beyond Philosophy into particular Theological definitions of God. My response to your argument is “Yes. You are correct. The God you describe does not make sense, but it is not the God I believe in.”

  4. > From my understanding, desire springs from perceiving a lack of something or a perceived overabundance of something.

    God has desires and He wills certain things to happen. Such as all of His subjects to benefit from His Grace in the afterlife, but as some of His subjects preferred to deny His decrees, then He wants that this lot not to get a share from the afterlife.

    Which points to this, God functions like us, but He is not like us because He is sole entity which exists before we are made and during our existence. So, our metrics do not form a boundary for God, but we use our adjectives pointing to highest level to define God. And desire is one of them.

    The problem lies in the difference between vectoral and scalar powers. We exist in a realm of vectoral powers, and God in some parts is a scalar power for us. On the other hand, the time being a vectoral input, is a reference point for God as well, meaning He exist in vectoral plane, without our definitions being valid.

    The perfect god, is the definition of why God exists, or the proof of God. God exists because we desire stuff as He desired stuff. If the desire were to be non existent, the adjectives to exist but to be absolute.

    TL:DR; all members of the universe yearn to change their form.

  5. I think it’s not just about desires. It’s about thoughts and feelings too.
    How could an immaterial being think without a thinking aparatus or have sensations without the appropriate machinery that would allow it to feel such things?
    An immaterial being just makes no sense.

    >God is trying to change his state from desiring to achieving his desire.
    Which would be an issue for a changeless definition of god…
    Maybe I don’t understand the definition of his changelessness correctly.

  6. You’re conflating definitions of desire. Desire can either be an emotional state or it can be a synonym of “willing”.

    All intentional actions stem from intent/will but not all intent springs from desire. There’s decisions which are meaningless to us, for example, which is sufficient to show that there’s a distinction.

  7. He acts out of Love. There is a concept of divine play (as in a child playing) in Hinduism called Lila. One conception is that since God is perfect and has no need of anything, the world was created out of pure creativity, pure spontaneity. As you say, He had no necessary reason to do it, He did so with complete and total freedom of action.

  8. Then God isn’t “perfect”. He still created our souls and will usher those of us who follow His Word unto heaven. Whether He’s “perfect” or not seems unimportant.

  9. A complete Being does not desire to complete himself. But a complete Being can desire to complete others. Aristotle points out that possessing more wealth tends to incline us more towards sharing it with others.

  10. I agree with this. God doesn’t lack nor did God “have to” create in the obligatory sense. Creation is just what happens; like the rest of the universe apart from human intellect.

  11. Desire can come from a lack, but it doesn’t have to be *your* lack. If I see a child without food, I am not lacking anything. I do not necessarily have an overabundance, but I can still desire to feed the child. My desire to feed said child has nothing to do with me lacking anything.

  12. People who don’t want to love other people are thereby imperfect? That sounds a bit weird to me.

    Kudos on not just basing desire on _lack_, by the way. So many do.

  13. From how I’m reading OP, a-lack- thereof is presented as synonymous with need. I’m not sure these are the same.

    God could want to share His love (as expressed through creation as well a special revelation of Himself and His purpose for humanity) and to do so would require others. God’s desire in this instance wouldn’t come from a need for humanity or a need to share love. The desire to share love would originate in God’s character and then would require a creation event in which humans are apart of.

    An example would be like: when I have food and desire to share it. I don’t need a person to have the desire. However, I can’t fulfill this desire when I lack a person to give it to. So my desire drives me to meet a person to share with.

    You might say I have a need to be pleasured by the consequences of my motivation to give. My answer to that is: I don’t need to have a desire. I just do.

  14. No matter who you are and how satisfied you are, the most universal and axiomatic definition of desire to me is, desire is a deep emotional knowing/sensing of how things ought to be and yearning for it (in anyone’s possible world). The stronger your desire is to HAVE one thing, the more you suffer, because your entire world ought to give you that one thing. If you feel you have everything, you can still desire. You can yearn for more of what is already there. But it’s experienced differently in that you have everything. In which case, you “know”how things ought to be, and you are likely grateful because they are that way. And you always want more. And are confident you will have more. By knowing, I don’t mean objective fact. As a human, I just mean…the deep instinct that helps inform your idea of how things ought to be for you, whether or not that idea is reflective of something that accurately supplies your needs in the end. In this respect, the idea of a “perfect” god (which is a vague thing to say), can also permit desire.

  15. These are good questions!

    Yes, a classically understood God is perfect and changeless and immovable. It cannot lack something or desire something beyond itself, because utter perfection cannot be added to.

    >But if he doesn’t desire. Then what spurs God to move at all?

    Setting aside that God doesn’t move Himself, what would cause God to create something else? Love.

    Love is traditionally defined as “willing the good.” God creates us for our good, so that we (by we I mean all of creation) can have the perfections of existence. God doesn’t gain anything whatsoever from us or our existence (not pleasure nor fulfillment nor satisfaction nor anything), but _we_ do. We get to exist!

  16. I think this comes down to the very definition of perfection. In my Christian faith, God is “perfect,” but perfect is closer to the definition of “complete.”

    In other words, God is powerful enough, knowledgeable enough, omnipresent enough, virtuous enough, and so on to complete His work and to go after His will. In that way, He is complete.

    In this way, being perfect does not mean that God is lacking nothing now, but that God can get all that He wants eventually.

  17. > But if he doesn’t desire. Then what spurs God to move at all?

    God is generally held to be changeless. Ie God *doesn’t* move. That said, I don’t see why we should assume that non-motion is the default and that motion only arises through “being spurred.” Objects in motion stay in motion. Some kind of eternal activity could simply be part of God’s nature.

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