Materialism In Our Society


21st Century has been turning out to be highly competitive and fast pacing. People are busy in inventing new things and improving themselves. These days the definition of “Success” is absolutely different than what it was a decade ago or 2-3 decades ago. These days success is mostly measured in the amount of wealth one has, or how much property one owns, or how lavish one’s lifestyle is. This changed perspective of people has created highly materialistic society which is unsustainable in the long run. Society would not be able to function in a good environment if everyone on our planet owns a four wheeler. That is why there is dire need of change in the perspective of collective society. While technology is in state of fast paced development, people have become more ambitious towards their materialistic goals. Most of the times we have set materialistic goals such as “To buy a house til the age of 28” or “To become a millionaire before the age of 30” or “To buy a Ferrari before the age 30”. These dreams are often times ambitious however it is left unattended to include the happiness in those dreams. Now some people do use lines such as “I would preferably cry in my Ferrari rather than on footpath” and there is absolutely nothing wrong in materialism, however as a society it will lead to absolute chaos in the future.

So what can be done about it? We will never give up our dreams and ambitions for social reasons and it will be unrealistic to even think about approaching this problem such approach. The basic problem lies in our narrative as a society. We have set a narrative for someone to be considered as successful. We often judge people too quickly based on what kind of shoes they are wearing and what kind of car they are driving. However it is too late to think this morally now, however we can definitely change the narrative about success altogether. For example, these days people are starting to own the electric car of Tesla motors to look more caring about the environment. Now this has led people to believe that Tesla owners are wealthy as well as compassionate about their surroundings. These kid of changes in narrative will definitely make people rethink about their goals. Now instead dreaming of owning a Ferrari someone might have dream of owning a Tesla. These kind of changes in narrative matter.

These days many billionaires are motivating people to become more philanthropic by taking a initiative in giving back to the society. Billionaires like Bill Gates and Warren Buffett have started campaigns such as The Giving Pledge to encourage extremely wealthy people to contribute majority of their wealth to philanthropic causes. The pledge as of August 2020, has 210 signatures from 23 countries. The total pledge is somewhere around 1.2 Trillion Dollars. Such campaigns and initiatives start to set new perspectives for people. People start to change the definition of success altogether, however it has yet to reach to the deepest part of society. We need to start changing the narrative of the society as a whole. Then only people will shift their focus from materialistic things to the welfare of society along with themselves.