Stuff

Posted on June 30, 2013. Filed under: Philosophy | Tags: , , , , , |

Too Much StuffI regularly haunt resale shops.  I find it relaxing to be in what Temple Grandin calls, “seeking mode” in animals.  I think the same holds for humans.  It can be pleasant to be seeking.  Have you ever noticed that once you find you immediately want to return to seeking?

Perhaps this mental drive is what has gotten us into this mess.  Sometimes I am amazed at what people are selling at rummage sales.  I will literally say when I’m in a store, “I would like to have that, but I’ll just wait until summer when I’ll find one at a rummage sale.”  And then I do, for a song.  This is all well and good for me, but I just have to scratch my head.  Why do people obtain so much that they either give away or sell for next to nothing within a year of obtaining it?

This consumerism mindset, that we can and should have anything we want, is definitely getting us into trouble.  Yes, it’s not good for the earth and its resources.  But what kind of people is it turning us into?  Soft, that’s what.  And stupid.  We don’t need ingenuity or tenacity anymore.  We can just buy another thing that will continue to make life easy and enjoyable.  It’s what Laurence Gonzales calls our, “vacation state of mind,” in his book, “Everyday Survival: Why Smart People Do Stupid Things”

I heard about Dave Bruno’s 100 Thing Challenge and I wondered what would happen if people seriously tried to pare down and think harder about accumulating more?   It’s hard to get everything you own down to 100 things!  But why not just buy less new stuff?

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