Tag Archive - Environment

Diagnosing TBA: The BUY Addiction

We buy stuff all the time. Some people have to buy something every single day, if not an item then at least a cup of coffee! They’re not living if they’re not entering into a store and spending some money.
 
Exercise: Count how many days a week go without buying anything, anywhere. If you buy something almost every day, or can’t go out without buying something, then you know you’re dealing with TBA!
 
Don’t you think that I am immune to that! Hey, if I write about some problem, it’s likely that I do or did experience it at some point!
 
Buying addiction is a serious problem in richer societies. It disturbs our inner balance as individuals as well as our global balance as a human community sharing one Earth.
 
We can see this global imbalance manifest in different ways:
 
1. Waste and surplus for some, starvation for many.
  
The rich societies that consume most of the resources contribute to a moral imbalance, which is a manifestation of injustice and selfishness. When food and cloths are thrown away in one part of the world, while hundreds of millions of humans can hardly eat, dress and find adequate shelter, something is grossly wrong.
 
Humans are meant to be one family with acceptable variations in wealth, but with a universal standard of dignity and availability of human needs for all, which our Earth naturally provides, if it wasn’t for the shameful greed and selfishness of some.
 
2. In order to buy more and cheap, the poor have to accept labor slavery.
  
Because money seems to be the God of an overwhelming number of businesses, they don’t see a problem meeting the needs of buyers for more and cheap by moving to poor countries where they can have labor camps. Humans who work most of their waking hours, in very poor conditions, for a pay that will barely help them survive. This imbalance is simply expressed in the fact that a worker could be paid in a week what we spend on a lunch for one!
 
All for the sake of us going into the store and buying a gadget that we might not use and didn’t need in the first place, or for us to be able to buy 5 t-shirts instead of just one. Wow, what a progress, we can have all those t-shirts and shoes in all the different colors. Boy hadn’t our life become much better with that!!!
 
3. More of the things that we don’t need end up creating mountains of toxic trash, and heavily polluted Earth.
  
Because people buy things they don’t need, they end up getting rid of them. In the worse manner possible: throwing them in the trash. Our addiction to keep buying stuff that we don’t need lead to factories producing more unnecessary stuff. Because they want to make them cheap, they use toxic material that will keep the cost low. Then this satanic cycle end with landfills full of toxic waste that no one really knows why it was even created to start with.
 
We lost, the buyers. We lost money and inner peace. They lost, the workers. They lost their life and energy to the factories. It lost, our Earth, and our future. It became full of toxic waste. The only ones who gained are the businesses, only a minority. Are those guys worth all those losses and suffering?!!

Heavy possessions!

A much needed simple living movement has been growing. People living in rich Western societies starting to realize that having more things didn’t make them any happier. Not only it didn’t make them happier, it actually decreased the quality of our life. The more stuff we have, the more stress we feel. Shopping became a new form of a distraction drug. We buy stuff in a state of half awareness, and we wake up to find more things that clutter our life and we don’t know why we bought them in the first place.

One saying of Prophet Muhammad keeps coming back to my mind, brief and to the point of this human misery. It’s hard to render it in English and keep it’s original brief power, but he simply said that having less stuff that gives us what we need is better than having much stuff that ends up distracting us.
 
The truth is, we feel more fulfilled with less, clear things. Once things increase in number, we start to loose control and loose track. We start actually loosing them. A place in our heart will keep worrying about those rarely used items. Our heart knows better. May be it worries how our world is going wrong, when we have things that we don’t use, while other humans are in dire need of those same things. We fill our plate at this open buffet, but we never get to finish it all. The food goes to the trash. Trash full of food in one place; human stomachs empty of food in another. That’s an insane paradox, totally unhuman.
  
If we really want to enjoy things, we actually need to have less of them. That’s a proven fact. Some experiments found that children given too many toys to choose from lost interest and were lost and bored, while those given a fewer number were engaged and satisfied. I don’t mean we don’t have nice things. In fact, since we will buy less stuff, we can then invest in the ones that we really, really like and enjoy. We get less, higher quality stuff. Every piece will matter to us, and will have a place in our heart.

Growing in peace!

“Rush will bring about remorse; patience will bring about safety”
Arabic proverb
 
Change doesn’t happen as quickly as we usually wish. I don’t think we have a chance of introducing any remarkable improvements before we make peace with this fact. In nature, our best teacher, change happens gradually and surely. Every particular plant grows at its prescribed pace. The only immediate forces that introduce massive, major and quick changes are phenomenons like hurricanes and tornados; destructive forces! Growth happens softly, gradually, slowly, and takes its time. Destruction can transform, in one hour, what needed decades to be built!
 
We feel this peace when we are surrounded by plants and nature. These beings are in no rush for anything! But humans were not even happy with the pace of plants and animals in growing, they invented growth hormones! The cost of this rush and impatience is becoming increasingly obvious, and even scary at times!
 
In our individual as well as collective endeavors for improvement, we have no chance of survival without fully accepting that change takes time, and growth happens slowly. Otherwise we will either not make any positive and real changes, or end up with monstres coming back against us!

What’s in Chicago’s Trash!?

The problem is not only Chicago, so I hope my new city will take no offense at the title. Yes Chicago is now my new, or current city. I do like you, you’re big and lively. Yes you don’t have as much nature and greenery as my previous town of Ithaca, NY, but you can’t ask everything from everyone. However, in my heart I do know and feel that we humans can do things much better than how we’re doing them now, but that’s life. We make mistakes, then struggle to learn from, and correct them. It is all possible to have a big, lively and green city. And it is indeed possible to have a big, lively city that is also good friends with our biggest home, Planet Earth. But we are a little too far from this one.

I do like you Chicago, but you know what, my previous little, limited town of Ithaca had something superior. Something you’ll have to work a little harder to achieve. I don’t know if you’re even thinking about it, and that’s the scary part. We all know it, the ill who falls into the illusion of being healthy is blindly walking toward the edge… You know the rest!

Ok you need to know how little Ithaca is superior. Let’s forget about the lakes, waterfalls, and green hills. It’s none of your fault if you don’t have all that, really. I would be silly to blame you for it. I can only bring to your attention the things that you can control, because this is where your, and everyone’s responsibility begins and ends.

Ok, I am going to tell you now. Ithaca made it easier for its residents to, well, recycle! You will say but everyone can recycle in Chicago, just do your research. I won’t argue with that. Conscious citizens will take the effort to recycle. But here is the sad part, the world can’t afford to rely on aware and conscious citizens alone any more. Unless they lead and make THE decisions. But we all know it, decisions are not always in the hands of the selfless. Well, not even half of the time. May be less. Definitely less!

And most people are too busy with their daily lives. Many of them struggle to make money, then struggle to spend it! Where will they find the time to think about the air they breath! How can they have any time to worry about the far future of Planet Earth. You know, for us humans, even 10 years from now is “far future”! We work five days a week, after work we need to have dinner, go grocery shopping, may be watch some TV and hey, we need to sleep and have some rest. Then comes the weekend, we need some relief, may be the movies, dinner out or something. Remember also that our mental energy is used up already by our mortgage, new car loan, and credit card bills. How in the world can any one expect us to worry about luxuries like the environment!

See, Chicago, I won’t be any longer, but we just need recycling to be more easily accessible. You are like our mother, you have to force us to do what’s good for us. That’s what good parents do. If they suspect their kid is doing drug, destroying their mind and body, they wouldn’t just tell them drugs are bad for you, if you want I will take you to rehab. I am always ready to help you once you decide to! Oh what an open minded parent would that be! Truth is a good parent in such situation will take their kid to rehab BY FORCE. Then the kid will be grateful later on. Yes the kid will hate them at first, think they are arrogant and controlling.

We need big cities like you Chicago to be arrogant and controlling. Force us to do the right thing, because if you don’t, we will hurt our mind and body, our future, and the future of our kids. And even you, at the end, will not be far from great harm. Believe me, your very existence is at risk!

For those who are still blind, let them “see” The Corporation

This is a MUST-SEE documentary. And by MUST, I mean that it’s not optional. It’s not a luxury. We can’t afford to waste too much time without this kind of information in the center of our interests. Every day interests. If we think and feel that we are free beings, and indeed we are, then we should be informed and aware of those who are trying to take away our freedom, for their own, exclusive, superficial, short-term and stupid benefit.
It’s pretty long, two hours and 25 minutes. I didn’t watch it at once, and may be you shouldn’t neither. I felt that I needed some time between every 2 or three titles. I am already familiar with what is being said here, but still, I needed to watch it. This DVD is on my to-own-when-I-get-out-of-debt list!!! Rent the DVD, buy it, or watch it all on Google Video. Then go the web site created for the documentary: www.TheCorporation.com, I checked it out and it was great to see that the producers built this web site to follow up on the ideas. Because this is a watch-for-action kind of documentary. The actions can be small in the beginning, personal and limited. It’s OK, that’s how everything starts in life.
We have to build and expand our awareness. It is the only way to get our world out of blindness and darkness. The light needs those people who can see (informed, aware) in order for the light to spread and dominate. And I am confident that we will win. Just when we truly decide to.
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