We've to make our economy flow and grow. If we will stop buying ''it'', then a lot of people will lose their jobs. I don't think it's anything bad, except the thing that it's unnecessary violence to our planet and waste of resources .
I started this thread after reading about books, like one with the same title as the thread, in which people lived for a year without buying anything. I'd be interested as to whether people thought it was a good idea or just a recipe for getting miserable.
I do agree with some of the studies which suggest that there's a inverse relationship between choice and happiness, sometimes restricting your choice can make you happier.
The whole thing interests me because I generally hear consumerism talked of as a bad thing but like the posts so far have suggested that's a simplistic point of view, although I do think it has had impacts and negative consequences, not just in spent resources or waste but the way the underinning culture of a society shapes peoples characters.
I try only to buy what will be of a good value to me, so when I buy electronic devices or tools, I purchase something that I can keep using years after the fact. it might help that I work professionally with tools and electronics, so I simply cannot afford to have some piece of shit fall apart on me when I need it to perform for a client. Along those same lines, I try to put my money in other things which have a longer life, spending more for quality, even if it means spending less frequently.
I don't have anything interesting to say about this myself; I'm just curious about others' opinions.
There's nothing innately wrong with wanting to buy more than what you need, but it's obviously harmful when it gets to the point where people's lives become preoccupied with acquiring possessions and when the production of goods involves suffering and exploitation.
I'm not a minimalist when it comes to possessions, but I don't live to obtain more and more stuff of increasing expensiveness either. I want to have things that are "unnecessary" but particularly valuable and/or useful to me, but I try to avoid the attitudes that more possessions equals more happiness and that my identity is shaped by what I buy.
Also, I try to buy goods that are ethically produced; however, this is pretty difficult for some types of products like electronics. Actually, there's probably some degree of human or animal exploitation and/or environmental harm involved in the production of...well, almost everything, but I try to buy from producers and sellers that are at least trying to minimize it.
“If you hate a person, you hate something in him that is part of yourself. What isn't part of ourselves doesn't disturb us.” - Hermann Hesse