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Posted By Eric Sammons On February 10, 2010 @ 7:05 am In Spirituality | Comments Disabled
Today, as we all know, environmentalism is a huge political issue. Many are advocating for new laws, new regulations and new rules in order to “protect the environment”, while many others are claiming that there is little need for these laws as the environmental situation is either not as bad as advertised or simply a hoax. Christians today fall on both sides of this issue.
But one thing I think too many Christians ignore is the terrible spiritual impact modern consumerism has on us. Regardless of the impact on the environment, rampant consumerism – as is practiced in the Western world today – is destroying our souls.
And the evidence that our world is relentlessly consumerist cannot be denied. During the 2008 World Youth Day in Australia Pope Benedict noted that, “reluctantly we come to acknowledge that there are… scars which mark the surface of our earth… in order to fuel an insatiable consumption“. Some of the extent of that insatiable consumption can be seen in this slideshow:
Some statistics from that slideshow:
One does not have to be an environmentalist to recognize the poverty of such wasteful living. But what is the Christian response to such flagrant consumerism? Patriarch Kirill of the Russian Orthodox Church says , “Christian asceticism”. This does not mean living in a cave, but instead “It’s the ability to regulate one’s consumption and the condition of one’s heart, and win a victory over passions and instincts. It is important that the rich and the poor alike possess these qualities.”
Patriarch Kirill further notes the terrible spiritual impact of this inability to regulate our consumption: “The trinkets of modern life make one giddy, and inebriate the human consciousness. People believe in advertisement, fashion, stereotypes, and this virtual world as if it were reality.” We end up living with a consumerist mentality in which we are only satisfied with more “stuff”, and the only thing that can truly satisfy us – God alone – is shoved aside in the endless quest for more and more things.
Let us pray that we might only strive to find satisfaction in God rather than the trinkets of this world.
St. Francis, pray for us!
Article printed from Divine Life – A Blog by Eric Sammons: http://ericsammons.com/blog
URL to article: http://ericsammons.com/blog/2010/02/10/insatiable-consumption/
URLs in this post:
 Portraits of Consumption: Visualizing the Statistics of Waste in America: http://www.fastcompany.com/pics/portraits-consumption-visualizing-statistics-waste-america
 says: http://rt.com/Top_News/2009-07-31/russian-patriarch-goes-green.html
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