[muh-teer-ee-uh-liz-uhm] Show IPA
preoccupation with or emphasis on material objects, comforts, and considerations, with a disinterest in or rejection of spiritual, intellectual, or cultural values.
materialism [muh-teer-ee-uh-liz-uhm] Show IPA
Part of Speech: noun
Definition: desire for possessions
Synonyms: heterodoxy, physicism, pragmatism, utilitarianism
the preoccupation with possessions, and caring more about things instead of people and what's more important in life. Materialsim distracts people from what's really important in life. Therefore, the pursuit of materialism is an empty, wasted life because those things are inanimate objects that dont comfort you or talk to you; they are just as mortal as we.
Materialism is a form of greed that distracts people from what's really important in life, and can make a person very lonely and unhappy.
"It is preoccupation with possessions, more than anything else, that prevents us from living freely and nobly." --Thoreau
My definition? Wanting to have things just for the sake of having things.
My brother and I were talking the other day about materialism and how much we each bought into it. (Geddit? BUY into it?) (oh, lord, so sorry about that) Anyway. I said that I tried not to buy into it as much as possible, making sure that I really wanted something before I bought it. He agreed. And then pointed out my books.
He's right. I have a ridiculous amount of books. I can't count them. I haven't read all of them. I probably never will read all of them. But, I love them. I love having them, looking at them, and knowing that if I am ever so inclined, I can read all about CS Lewis's spirtual journey. Or finally get around to finishing the Napolean biography.
My first response was that books are different, because books are really just collections of ideas/information. But they are still things to posess, and things that I do enjoy possessing just for sheer possibiliy.
That's my question. Can you be materailistic about books?
I am materialistic about books. Part of buying a book is the cover (if there are different versions of the book available). I'll balance the appearance between the cost of the differing version.
It's silly because the cover is much less the focus over the content of the book.
But it looks nice on my bookshelf haha
Of course you can be materialistic about books. Because books aren't just the ideas that they embody, but are physical objects. For instance, I would say that you cannot be materialistic about eBooks. But actual books are different. And of course, I only understand this because I am very materialistic about books. I like having the Barnes and Noble classics with the leather covers, and I like having first editions if the book is really good, etc., etc., etc.
I think I've reach the point where I need three shelves now to contain all the books I own. I suppose it depends, since most people wouldn't want to invest their money on something they obviously wouldn't want to invest their time into. I suppose this can sort of contribute to the notion that you're just building up your 'backlog', although the idea of a backlog involving books is more personal given that libraries (digital and physical) are still at large. Being materialistic about something like music records, blu-rays, books, etc. isn't exactly negative if you know you'll get an exchange of ideas you'll enjoy. I mean, being materialistic about let's say - fancy glass kittens in tutus would be trivial. Wanting to own books that have appealing ideas is just an extension of your appreciation for those non-physical qualities.
Yeah, there's nothing inherently deep or intelligent about reading. I've read plenty of books that are absolutely dull and devoid of anything that matters. If you buy a lot of books that are mostly just stories without anything else going for them I wouldn't even think about implying that you're a bad person but books can easily be just as materialistic and ultimately meaningless as anything else. People just have a tendency to view them as something for intellectuals or nerds as a by-product of most people being illiterate in all societies up until very recently. Even now most people don't read unless they're still in school.