In recent years, I’ve heard our civilization labeled as
the microwave society, meaning that people today want instant gratification. They want no waiting required to fulfill their wishes.
Regretfully, this mindset puts self above all else.
This is the grown-up version of a child’s temper tantrum: I want this; I want my way; I want it now. Maybe the grown-up version is a quieter event, maybe not. But this mentality always puts self first and foremost.
How did our society develop into a me-first lifestyle? Perhaps because in past decades disciplining children has increasingly become unpopular. One theory I’ve heard over the years is we don’t want to create low self-esteem in a child by unfairly restricting his or her behavior in any way.
But is maintaining boundaries for a child in order to keep the child safe unfairly restricting behavior? Teaching a child to play in his yard instead of in the street is for the good of the child, not to create low self-esteem. This is an elementary example, but all reasonable discipline can be for the child’s advantage and given with love and understanding.
But I digress…I’ll agree that our society has become materialistic—we want things, adult toys, if you will. And the more things we have, we sometimes think the more successful others will perceive us to be. Add to that the attitude that we want our things instantly, and we run a high risk of accumulating a storehouse of things we very soon tire of and then don’t want at all.
The quotation above is spot-on. We’d be better off being happy with what we get, rather than getting many things that with time we no longer are happy to have. All this might boil down to one question—when considering materialism, should we seek success or happiness?
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