Sunday, August 8, 2010

But Will It Make You Happy?

Happiness... is what everyone is seeking in life.

There are many signs that point to happiness. But will they make you really happy?

Among all the signs, materialism or consumerism is a formidable one. The more you have, the happier you will be. The more you spend, the happier you will be, they say.

Really? Will it really?

Things do not make us happy, but many of us live in an illusion that they will. They may make you feel happy for a while, but it does not last very long. Unlike the signs, there is not really "joy and peace" in consumerism or materialism. The illusion that you feel happy may continue for a while if you keep buying new things, better things and more expensive things, but it won't last for ever.

The New York Times (August 8th, 2010) had an article related to happiness. Its heading was "But Will It Make You Happy?"

This article starts with a story of a young couple who realized the illusion about materialism and consumerism early on and they have changed their life style drastically. They earn less and possess less than before, but they are definitely happier than before.

Happiness does not depend on how much you possess or how much you spend, but on how you spend with what you have.

This way of thinking seems to become a new norm among many people, the article says, even among young people. So true. That is why they choose to pursue a simple life.

Materialism is tempting us to pursue owning a lot of things, probably expensive and brand name things that many believe shape our social status. This belief causes us to activate greed within us. But, Luke 12:15 tells us to resist all kinds of greed because our life does not depend on how much we possess.

The truth will set us free (John 8:31,32) ... not only from the bondage of sin... but also from the bondage of things or stuff in which the world will tempt us to believe while we are living in the world. The scripture is clearly saying, "Do not love the world or things in the world for we are not of the world."

The New York Times article, linked below, does not have any spiritual implications, but it may help you discover a bit of truth to the corelation between material possession and happiness. May it be the case for you. - Jeffrey

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