“One of the weaknesses of our age is our apparent inability to distinguish our needs from our greeds.” ~ Donald William Bradley Robinson …
The societies and cultures of today love to bombard us with marketing and advertising campaigns that tend to confuse us into believing that our wants are actually our needs. These campaigns are extremely effective too, as I often times find myself wondering if perhaps I really do need that new faster phone, or that latest car that is twice as fast andmore advanced technology, or that new convection oven that can prepare my meals in a matter of minutes and still retain the taste of an oven.
And this inability to distinguish our needs from our greeds extends into all walks of life. There are businesses who record millions in profits but choose not to invest it in hiring and training new workers or improving and expanding services for clients and customers, or to spend some of it as profit-sharing with current employees or on initiatives and incentives to boost morale and employee health–this is greed. There are individuals who purchase mansions with several bedrooms that sit unused when there are thousands who have no place to sleep each night–this is greed.
We all have our basic needs in life–we need to have enough to eat; we need to have shelter and clothing; we need to have some level of security; we need to have basic care for our health and well-being; we need to have time to relax; we need to have relationships with others. And if we wish to have a better understanding of our own needs as opposed to our own greeds, then we must first be aware of the things we wish we had. Then, we have to be honest with ourselves in determining if we truly need that thing–perhaps making a list of pros and cons or talking with a trusted friend. The more we allow ourselves to become aware of our needs and greeds, the more experience we gain in doing so and the easier it becomes, and by and by, our lives become much simpler; we learn to get by with less and recognize our wants versus our needs with greater clarity and ease.
Let go or give up one thing that is not a need of yours.
Questions to consider:
Why do we sometimes convince ourselves that we need something when we really do not?
How much of an effect do marketers and advertisers have on our perspectives towards the things we want?
Why do so many people make greed a way of life?
For further thought:
“Our desires always increase with our possessions; the knowledge that something remains yet unenjoyed, impairs our enjoyment of the good before us.” ~ Samuel Johnson, The Works of Samuel Johnson, L.L.D.