Nuggets of Wisdom: Greed
Published: October 18, 2010 at 8:34 am
"Anyway, no drug, not even alcohol, causes the fundamental ills of society. If we're looking for the source of our troubles, we shouldn't test people for drugs, we should test them for stupidity, ignorance, greed and love of power."
- P. J. O'Rourke
How wonderful the world would be if there was some sort of litmus test that would weed out those people afflicted by the diseases of stupidity, ignorance, and greed. I know I would get hit every now and then with the stupidity or ignorance portion, but hopefully not the greed.
Greed is defined by dictionary.com as "excessive or rapacious desire, esp. for wealth or possessions."
Don't get me wrong, I like my stuff, but I don't need to own everything I see. I usually try my best not to take everything offered. I always want to save some for others. I fear that is not the case for some out there....and I don't know why.
I can understand if you come from a background of not having something. When the opportunity comes along, you take what you can and maybe a little more just in case it doesn't come along again. I've read that a tribe of Pygmies living in the jungle will gorge themselves on bananas when they come across them because they never know if and when they will come across such bounty again.
The part I have trouble wrapping my head around is the large number of haves out there who grab as much as they can just to keep it from anyone else. Why do they feel the need to take more than they need or can use? What good does it do a man to gain all just to lose his soul (to badly paraphrase)?
It is a double-edged sword because when greed comes in and tries to take all the pie, it teaches the others waiting patiently for their share that they need to jump in, forks flying, to get some before it's all gone. The more greed grows, the fewer crumbs are left for the rest.
Too bad there isn't a 12 step program out there. It might someday become fashionable to sequester yourself in a rehab facility to get over your greed addiction.