Saturday, February 24, 2018

Open Space: Excess consumption must stop

February 15, 2017 by Jayden Grieve, contributing writer

Materiality is a spectre, possessing our body without our knowledge, causing us pain that we think we are enjoying. There are things—physical things—that we need; there is nothing wrong with a certain amount of possessions. What is wrong is when the volume of one’s possessions begins to fill their mortal glass until their cup runneth over… and onto the table… and all over the floor.

Is it the American dream that has suggested we buy until there is nothing to buy? I think most have realized that the American dream is an ornamental cherry—fruitless despite its beauty—that encourages the instinctual acquiring habits of our populace.

This story originally appeared in our February 15, 2017 issue.

There are things—physical things—that will bring happiness, but if an objective spyglass is turned to Mt. Material it becomes obvious that those things make up only a dusted snowcap.

Buying is second nature to us. We’ve been told, despite our knowing better, that physical things will make us happy, and we are slumbering in rising bathwater. Too long have we ignored our better judgment in our health and in our habits; we are buying to buy, scrambling for Tickle Me Elmos and embroidered signs that say “bless this mess” while listening to our complaints about poverty echo inside our empty vaults.

Name for me one good reason to shatter ourselves at work perpetually if we’re going to waste our reparations on things that we will cease to think about the moment they land on our floor with an empty thud.

Why waste? Why waste anything when life is so short it’s already practically over? Reassess what you think you need. There is no denying that there are things that you need. The extent, the extravagance—these are what need to be reconsidered.

Work less and buy a smaller house. Don’t buy things you will never think about again. Do things that you will have a hard time not thinking about every second for the rest of your life. Experience. We are our biggest limiter.

Fruit is not ornamental, and it is not meant to just sit decoratively on our tables; fruit is meant to be devoured.

You can touch everything. Unfetter yourself. Go, do, be; these are all as important as have. To buy a plane ticket costs as much as buying an oversized Buddha statue, but buying the ticket is what would make Buddha happy.

You do not learn from things, you learn from experiences. I am not berating you with anger; I am begging you with everything.

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