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Wants & needs


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There seems to be a fine line in Western culture in today's day and age between what is needed and what is wanted or desired. Annually, the average person is exposed to countless advertisements on television. Without even thinking about the cause and effect relationship the advertisements presented and your own decision-making and impulses, you are inescapably conditioned to it. I cannot even begin to imagine the different state of mind we would be in if advertisements (at least at the level presented today) did not exist.


If you think happiness is found in material possessions, you will never be fully happy. There is always something more than can be bought, something more than can be stored away to make room for something new. This cycle so often happens. Purchases are sometimes done with the intent to impress or used as a way to compensate for one of your faults. Whatever the case may be, it is not so much the fact that many people in Western society accumulate these sorts of things, but rather, the relationship we bring to what we surround ourselves with.


One way to be more unconditionally content is to reduce your wants. If you desire less, you will be more satisfied with what is and not what isn't. Nowadays, some people are beginning to adapt to a simpler lifestyle not governed by materialism. And while we can not escape the influence of the societal norm, it is most certainly possible to change our relationship to the world around us. Reducing your wants does not necessarily mean that you have to sell everything in your house and sleep on the floor and wear rags, but there is a point in which needs is greatly surpassed and luxuries are acquired. These often over-the-top extraneous acquisitions are what cause us to feel so exhausted with ourselves.


I hope this is of benefit to someone.

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My friend once told me about this article he read, About how western cultures raise there children. Apparently a study showed that while western children are learning to talk, there parents tend to use "objects" and "things" and teach them as there first words, other cultures apparently tend to use "actions" that people do as there first words. This apparently can cause kids to value objects and posesions as important, even things they do not need. I dunno I just though that was interesting. I doubt it's true for all western parents tho.

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