We all need things for (daily) live. Clothes, food, accommodation etc are means for living and not the goal of living. In history people always wanted to live a happy life, only the means by which they try to achieve this changes. Life now is different than for example the life of 200 years ago. We now use computers, smart phones, airplanes etc. 200 years ago people didn’t have the things we have, but then too there were happy and unhappy people. We can be happy without owning many stuff. So that means materialism does not make automatically happy.
Can image alter reality?
On the contrary, materialism makes unhappy. Things age and degenerate. This means that it is not possible to keep an object forever in good shape. Why hold on to something that you will definitely loose.
Producers also introduce newer and better versions of a product. That means the product you bought will be outdated in the near future and that you’ll never be satisfied if you’re materialistic. If you always want more and better things you will, not only be unsatisfied, but also ungrateful and unhappy.
Return to happiness
There are billions of people and billions and billions of products. It is impossible to have them all. You have to choose what you want to have. As your wellbeing and happiness is at stake, the decision must be based upon your needs, what you find important and what makes you happy. If you live in the city and have an office job, you won’t buy a tractor as you’re not a farmer and don’t need one But people nevertheless buy many products which they almost never use. because it is available, their friends have it, they see it on television or to show off.
The same is also true for our appearance. Materialism attaches much value to how we look in stead of what we do and feel. Modern society is obsessed with looks and superficialities. Materialism has a built in failure to unhappiness as all creatures age. There is only one 100% certainty in life:death. The desire to stay young, beautiful and popular is doomed to fail. So why chase a dream which is impossible to fulfill. That doesn’t look very logical. But on the other hand, materialists decide with their eyes not with their minds.
There is also an unrealistic beauty ideal, especially of women. For the majority it is not possible to comply with it. A new report says that many girls are avoiding social contacts and activities because of a poor body image. Many girls think they are too fat, have stress, eat less and endanger their health This is no surprise as physical attractiveness is very important in our society. This also “forces” many girls to online communication.
We should focus on the thing which really help us, on content in stead of packaging. A good health is much more important than what others think of you. A healthy lifestyle not only makes you healthier but also more attractive. Being well-groomed is important but it shouldn’t turn into a beauty obsession.
However we still have the need to be beautiful and to live eternal. But perhaps we are looking for it in the wrong place, just like looking for diamonds in a bakery. Perhaps we should put our needs (body & soul) in the center of our lives and not what is possible in this world. All human needs can eventually be fulfilled: You are hungry, there is food. You are thirsty, there is water. You want to socialize, there are other people and etc.. With analogous reasoning we could say that this also applies to our desire to live eternally in beauty. Could it be that this desire is meant to inspire us to look for it.