Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Money

I have been on this planet for 18 years and it’s only in the last 3 months have my eyes finally been opened.

From the moment we are born we are influenced by our surroundings and conditioned by society. We’re thrust into social situations and monitored by our elders to check that we are becoming acceptable humans. Then at the tender age of 18 we’re released into the big world and given a pat on the back for surviving long enough to enter adult hood.

Most people then will accept that society has a plan for them and then will follow it step by step.

The ‘general’ plan goes something like this:

Birth --> School-->University-->Independent Accommodation & Job--> Marriage--> Offspring -->Nice family car--> Retirement-->Death.

But something I’ve noticed for a while is the sheer unhappiness of my fellow human beings. Next time you are out shopping or on public transport look around. Really look. Do these people look happy?  Do these people look fulfilled.

So why do we allow this to happen? Why do we accept societies plan without question? Why do we allow ourselves to live unhappy unfulfilled lives?

The answer is of course Money. Everyone needs it. Even those people that reject societies Grand Plan need it to survive. No money, no food, no water, no medication…no shelter…but the problem we have created is not the requirement of basic necessities. It’s the desire for luxuries. I’ve heard people say once they reach 40 they ‘deserve’ these luxuries. After all they’ve been following the plan step by step; surely society owes them a nice car and pretty wall paper in their house. A house filled with consumer goods that they felt pressured to buy whether it was from TV shows or magazines with glamorous models wearing the latest fashion…but they don’t really need. How often have you heard a women stand in front of her full wardrobe screaming ‘I have nothing to wear?!’ I’ll confess I myself have done it many times. Obviously I have numerous items to wear but through perceived obsolescence I will happily storm around the house demanding that I need a new dress as my 5 others have been worn before. But recently I have started thinking differently. Where did my dresses come from, someone designed them, the cotton and various other materials to make them came from somewhere, then they were made by someone, and then shipped to the shops. For just one item of clothing, there is a lengthily process it had to go through from design to retail. Not to mention the environmental implications that it has on the planet from the factory and shipping pollution. Shops tend to have 4 main seasons, Spring/Summer, Summer/Autumn, Autumn/Winter, and Winter/Spring. So EVERY retail shop brings in an entire new stock 4 times a year. Why? This is completely unnecessary! And of course costs millions and millions of pounds. But again, it goes back to Money. They receive 10’s of millions of pounds back. After all, old stock gets boring after a while; people want new stuff to spend their hard earned cash on.

One particular item that I find fascinating is the 2nd Generation iPod nano. I bought my first (and last) Apple product in 2006 and why have I not updated it like everyone else? Because I am pleased to say it still works perfectly. Now back to issue of the colour. I believe Product Red is a true test of ones personality and let me lay it out for you. You have the choice of 5 iPods. One is Green, One Blue, One White, One Black and One Red. Only the red one donates 12% of its purchasing price to a charity (For Aids). Now which one will you buy?

The amount of people that bought the other 4 because they ‘preferred the colour’ is astounding and in my mind shocking. A true test of everyone’s individual being. Colour or the ability in some small way to help out another human. And Colour won.

I have been on this planet for 18 years and it’s only in the last 3 months have my eyes finally been opened. And I don’t like what I can see.

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