Literally the word means "to require (something) because it is essential or very important".
It seems obvious that to be ensconced in a human body implies need. The body needs water and food and shelter. These needs aren't something to be ashamed of or ignored. They are basic to sentient life.
There are other needs as well. Needs no less real or essential and yet needs that we often deem of lesser value, even to the point of sublimating them in favor of our deified cultural values of independence, self-sufficiency and singularity. These needs include touch and affection. They include safety and security. They include love and belonging.
I am curious about these needs. Why do we bury them shame facedly? Is it because they have gone unfulfilled and so the desire for them is hidden away, even from ourselves, only to arise with tenacious hunger before we beat them back again and again. It seems terribly sad.
I am beginning to see these needs after years spent relegating them to the dark. I welcome them in their ungainly and distressing guises. I am learning to embrace them even in the face of external pressures to be "whole" and never wanting...to be "complete" and never lacking...to be "full" and never hunger.
Without any assurance that these needs will be met, I wrap my arms around them and hold them close whispering, "I hear you", "I hear you", "I hear you". It is all I know to do. I rock them through the night and for the first time in my life I can see clearly that no amount of meditating is going to ease my thirst. I am going to have to bring the cup to my lips and drink.