Learn about Hinduism and Buddhism

Our blog has a new look and style! But don't worry: among our free books and free classes and other free resources, check out The Secret Knowledge of Yoga and The Logic of Buddhism, both of which have lots of your favorite and new sutras, shastras, puranas, lessons, and the "everything yoga" of our prior "incarnation" you loved.

Worn out

We are a social species, our nature is to compare ourselves with others. Simply seeing another will result in our comparing ourselves to them. And, comparing ourselves, it is our nature to see what we lack. This is a biological fact of all social behavior, not only in our species, but all social animals: in all social species, inequality results in a specific kind of social anxiety called "inferiority complex."

Inferiority results in an economic phenomenon called "conspicuous consumption." When a person believes they have inadequate resources they will make their wealth visible, or "conspicuous," in an effort to calm themselves. They will spend money to convince themselves that they have enough. They will impoverish themselves because they fear poverty. They then displace their dissatisfaction on the things and experiences they have acquired, thinking their things and experiences are as inferior as they are.  Identifying with their possessions, attaching to them through materialism, worsens a sense of inferiority.  In their growing anxiety, they feel hatred, and do regrettable things.

Things and experiences cannot make you happy.  They are insufficient and unsatisfying.  If you enjoy what you have bought better, you will buy fewer things: it is by fewer possessions, not more, that there is the potential for greater satisfaction, and happiness - because it breeds familiarity with the objects. Even if a thing is broken, or imperfect, we may love it - and even learn to love ourselves, our family and friends - despite numerous imperfections.

Clothes kept in a closet stay new and don't wear out - but they also get no use as clothes. It is the wearing of clothes, and their washing, which stains, tears and fades them.  We cannot avoid this vulnerability if they will achieve our purpose: it is by proper use all things are ruined.  Food becomes feces. You will one day grow sick, old, wear out, and die. To be broken by use is reasonable, and honorable.  Like a drum, you may inspire heroes to success - but only if you allow yourself to be beaten to pieces!

Consider why you purchase things. Is it to use them? Will you, on your deathbed, be happier for those clothes, or other things you worked so hard to purchase and now keep dusty in a closet? Will you enjoy them 10 years from now? A week from now?  Even if they get worn, and ruined? Well, you should.  Enjoyment is also your human nature.

Worthwhile work is worth doing, good things are always worth the price we pay for them.  Remember the reason for which things are bought, and you will never regret the price you pay. Remember the purpose of your life, and you will die contented that you achieved all that was needed to be done.  You will have earned honor; your sacrifices will be acceptable.  So don't feel badly your clothes are worn, they are well used. Properly used.

Besides, the people you compare yourself to wear clothes bought with borrowed money, driven by the same anxiety you feel. It is not good to compare your best clothes against someone who has no clothes of their own, even if their borrowed clothes are finer.

We are all human.  We see only what we lack.  And then we desire what we already have.  And it is precisely because we and our world are not lacking in goodness that we seldom notice goodness, or enjoy it.  Perhaps, though, today we can remember that goodness, and make it conspicuous?

We share an unbreakable bond of kinship. We are all human.  We care greatly for each other.  Be without regret. Be content, and happy.