bear all their effects —
There’s this cliché about what separates man from beast.
I’m sure you’ve heard it before — references to the thinking brain, opposable thumbs, et cetera. There’s all kinds of things we point to in order to support this belief that we are superior to denizens of the natural world. But this is only a red herring, a way to help us forget that there is one thing that animals have over most of us: they have little to tie them to any one particular place.
Don’t get me wrong — there are a few mitigating factors to that freedom, such as one’s preferred habitat and food sources. Ignoring those, however, animals are able to migrate from one place to another without worrying about how their furniture is going to get from point A to point B.
How deft is the artifice of the human world, to saddle us to a wealth of possessions large and small? What is it that tricks the oppressed majority — the relatively wealthy poor of the Western World — into thinking they are trapped where they are, forced to work the same minimum wage job, drive the same old clunkers, bandage their pain with the same old vices until such time as they are called to rejoin the spiritual pool?
Maybe the massive gulf between needs and desires ought to be thoroughly examined, because the things we desire — our possessions — are robots that automate our feelings of contentment; without them, we are forced to make a conscious choice to be happy with less than what everyone else has. The majority of us could cut out 98% of the things we call ours, and still be happy by choice. Why should we cheat ourselves out of making such a choice?
Some day, I want to sell everything big. The house, the furniture . . . everything that can’t be packed into a small moving truck, and then some.
Hit the soft reset button.
Clear out the RAM.
Take the family and find a home near the ocean.
Which ocean? I don’t care — I’m willing to explore my options.