We live in a society of consumption.
When I look around me, I can see how the consumption has rapidly increased since I was a kid. People want it all, just because that has become the norm. Big plasma TVs in every room, fancy cars, a boat or a cabin in the mountain, at least. Changing the interior once a year, to follow the trends, or just to have a change. Buying a new fridge instead of fixing the old one that broke.
Just because we can.
Here in Norway, as well as in many other countries around us, we do not experience much of the global warming, or the side-effects of consumption. No big catastrophes At least yet. We can comfortably continue to live as we do, oblivious to the increasing amount of climate refugees all over the world. Someone told me, and I have no numbers to back this up, that the climate refugees have outnumbered people who seek refuge for other reasons. And, these people have no rights anywhere, since they are not refugees of war or persecution.
Can we continue to stay oblivious to what is happening around us? Can we continue to live in our little bubble here, and expect the rest of the world to fix this problem?
Will we be willing to make a change in our own consumption? Live a bit less comfortably?
I too am guilty. I want a big appartment, a walk-in closet, a Chanel bag, and pile shoes onto my already big shoe-pile. I want a cottage by the sea for vacations, I want to work less but get more money.
The consumption society can offer comfort, but apart from that, it can not offer much. It is a constant striving for more, that will never, ever end. We are searching for something that will never satisfy us, because there will always be a novelty, something new that we need, to make our lives just right, almost complete.
It is to search for something that does not exist. To search for something that does not exist, to form our entires lives around it, and still feel that there is emptiness, that can cause depression, numbness, a loss of purpose in life. And it will never stop, unless we look at ourselves, and start to investigate what truly makes us happy or content (happy is not a permanent state). It is not easy. It requires fumbling for something deeper that we might not know what is yet. It might require to give up those attempts of contentment that consuming gives, and it will leave an empty space for a while, until we find something within us that will fill the space.
Shopping therapy makes me happy, I have to confess. But I know it only does so as long as I am content. Otherwise it will be a constant urge, a constant longing that will never be satisfied. How can I combine my interest for fashion with my concern for my own well-being and the consumption of the society? I do not have the answer yet…
(pictures: http://www.dagbladet.no and lipstique.com)