“What, then? Did nature give us bellies so insatiable, when she gave us these puny bodies, that we should outdo the hugest and most voracious animals in greed? Not at all. How small is the amount which will satisfy nature? A very little will send her away contented. It is not the natural hunger of our bellies that costs us dear, but our solicitous cravings.”
Seneca Letter 60
“The land of a rich man produced abundantly. And he thought to himself, ‘What should I do, for I have no place to store my crops?’ Then he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.’ But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life is being demanded of you. And the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ So it is with those who store up treasures for themselves but are not rich toward God.”
The cravings you have for things at times can seem insatiable. In our current world there is always a new object to purchase and they are easily accessible. Have any of these objects actually made you feel content though? We feel joyful during the moments we first use them. But that fades almost immediately just like it did when opening presents as a kid. Once it is opened you immediately go to open the next.
This message is not breath taking, you have heard it before. We often don’t realize just how old this advice is though. The same idea has been around for thousands of years and something people have always struggled with. Here, Seneca and Jesus both tell us the same thing. You will only be happy if you can break out of the cycle of more, more, more. Realize that next iPhone won’t make you happy and it won’t. You will no longer crave it and you will be the same person with or with it.