Want vs. Need is a discussion that could go on forever. I’m not here to tell anyone that they have to only survive with their basic needs being met and anything above that is wrong. What I am going to do is ask you why you desire the things you desire.
Who programs us to want the things that we line up for on Black Friday? What is the driving force behind the items that we make best sellers on amazon.com?
You don’t think you’re a programmed? Really? Take a look in your cupboards and tell me if you know the commercials associated with the products you see.
Look at your wardrobe and tell me what celebrity or tv personality is closest to “your style”….because it is your style right? You haven’t ever seen anything that would make you think it was acceptable to wear what you wear?
What about your car, or the decorations in your house? Where did the inspiration come from for the things that you own?
Companies spend millions on advertising each year to get you to own the idea of choice. You feel that you are the one in control because you went to Arby’s instead of McDonald’s.
We are constantly told what will make us happy. We are shown pictures of people who are generally better looking than us, by the standards of society, enjoying things that now we want. We didn’t know that those products would bring us such joy. Now that we do, we must have them so we can fill our lives with that joy.
The problem with this is not the products. It is with the illusion that those things will bring you joy.
Joy is not gained by things, it is experienced by enjoying time with family and friends.
This is obvious by the amount of suicides and overdoses in Hollywood. Powerful, famous, beautiful people decide that life is not worth living. We can’t understand it. People say, “If I had what they had, I would be so happy!” That is the illusion.
Basic needs have to be met in order to enjoy life…and keep on living. Beyond that it comes down to attitude and companions.
So what do we do about this illusion problem? How do we combat the barrage of images tell us what we must have to be happy? Those are the questions I want you to answer. We can’t move forward as a society unless we acknowledge that something is wrong. Once we acknowledge the problem, we have to work together to come up with the solution.
If you don’t think that you have a problem, then carry on. If what I said makes sense and you want to adjust the world around you, sit down and talk with your friends. Solutions come from community.