Do you ever stop to really think about why you do the things you do and buy the things you buy? This idea has been on my mind for quite awhile now. Choosing to live a simpler life is easier, in most cases, for the person doing it, than it is for the people around them to comprehend. Like most people, those in my life are a mixture of like-minded individuals, those tied to their commercially driven lifestyle and those that are over the top materialistic in their life approach. It takes all kinds. But, then, if you step back and look at what drives your choices, it can be a real heart breaker to see how detrimental some choices really are for mankind in general.
A couple of movies I watched recently really drove this point home...for me anyway. One of them I had seen when it came out and the other is an Indie film that Wes picked out on Netflix on a whim.
"The Joneses", while on the surface is a commentary on the under cover mass marketing approach to how we are influenced and coaxed into buying the latest and greatest in order to be like everyone else, it has a darker sub theme. That being that people yearn to do whatever possible to, at least outwardly, appear to be like everyone else while destroying their true selves...all for the sake of "fitting in" to whatever society says you have to do/be/buy/drive/wear/live in/eat/drink, when at the end of the day, a misplaced happiness is nearly always revealed.
Last night, a show was on TV, that brought this sad life commentary back to slam in my face with a heartbreaking example of just how far some people are willing to go...all for the almighty dollar to make themselves happy. The episode of "Deal With It" (a show that has people do and say all sorts of stupid and sometimes hurtful things in order to win a monetary prize) in question, showed a Dad having a meal with his daughter. He started out doing silly things, such as snapping his fingers/waving his arms while talking. Basically acting a fool, as the winnings increased while he is told to do more and more silliness. At the highest level, he is told (by the puppeteers in his earbud) to tell his daughter that he and her Mother are divorcing as he has found someone else...another man that joins the table. The look of tears, devastation and profound shock/sadness on his daughter's face, even after it is revealed to her that it was all a joke so he could win $5000, is beyond sad. My heart broke, yet again, to the idea that someone would be willing to hurt their own child to that level all for a few bucks. It's sad people. Gut wrenching, heart breakingly sad.
Wake up. Look around you. Life is truly what you make it. Being caught up in the materialistic falsehood that is spewed at us from every angle is sad. This is just my point of view and is not to say that I am immune to the lure of stuff, but it does not rule me.
My favorite quote from "The Brass Teapot" comes at the end of the movie and if you are not in tune with what the whole movie is trying to say, you will miss it: "Kings, queens, dictators, priests, peasants, generals and thousands before you have held it. So few have had the strength to let go."