A recent online article which focused on one NFL star and one NBA star analyzed celebrities’ insatiable lust for more and more and more wealth, power, and adulation. While the acerbic feature’s shots hit quite a few close-to-the-bullseyes, one proposition was notably wrong.
“Having gotten anything they could ever possibly want, they crave more,
like everyone, and they inevitably overstep trying to make it happen.”
Like everyone is, like, wrong. Craving more – and more, and more – is undoubtedly not an uncommon malady, but to claim that it’s a universal human trait is both a denial of reality and a nescience of a value system embraced by many.
From the neighbor down the block to globally known personages, countless numbers of them are satisfied with having the rudimentary elements of existence with perhaps a few relatively modest extras added. Some purposefully lead a minimalist existence. The Indian ascetic Mahatma Gandhi is one of the best known of the latter. Ineffably content with very little, Gandhi’s austere lifestyle was the product of his value system . . . values that were the antithesis of craving more and more.
My hunting buddy and best friend lived right across the street from me. He was one of the smartest, most ingenious, and caring people I have ever met. The financial particulars were unknown to me, but if he didn’t have a million in assets, he surely did in the high hundreds of thousands. Yet he lived in an unpretentious three-bedroom rambler and wore off-the-rack clothing. He could easily have afforded a fully equipped 4WD pickup for our hunting forays, but instead pulled a ramshackle trailer behind a well-used sedan. My friend’s frugal lifestyle was the product of his value system . . . values that were the antithesis of craving more and more.
There are two ways to have enough. One is to get more; the other is to want less. The millionaires and billionaires who are constantly bent on increasing, well, everything, embrace the former. But empirical observation reveals that for millions of people, being thankful for having the basics of life is enough. The author of the aforementioned article needs to meet some of them.