In Buddhism, we say: Mind makes everything. It literally means that the world as we see it is created by our minds. But where it is most easy to comprehend (at least, for students like me) is when we learn how to be aware of our assumptions about what “is” and what “should be.”
A woman I know was talking about what’s missing in her life. She’s young, but she’s longing for a certain kind of relationship and some kind of stability to go along with it. Right now she’s feeling very sorry for herself.
This is typical of the way we all suffer. She’s very sad because she wants something. Her wanting it (desiring it) is only part of what’s making her feel bad, though. She’s feeling even worse because she keeps on thinking about how she doesn’t have it. And when she sees two lovers who appear happy, she feels even worse.
She is actually doing a lot of work (in her mind) to create all this misery for herself. I have done this too! We have to unravel this bundle of me, me, me, to see clearly how we make this longing, this absence, this desire.