Friday, 16 January 2009

Luka's Guide to the Seven Deadly Sins - Greed

Arguably the root of all evil, greed can be a deeply unattractive sin, conjuring up images of candle-lit money-counting misers in fingerless gloves.

Avarice has never been a sin of mine. I am as unlikely to count coins as I am calories. My working class background means I am used to having very little money and expensive items fill me with unease, that nagging feeling that nothing should cost that much and someone, surely, is being taken for a mug. I don't desire the trappings of wealth. I have never longed for flash cars, big houses or designer clothing and I don't understand people who do. Status, for me, is achieved through what you do, not what you own. I don't need to have more money than somebody else to feel superior to them. I am quite capable of doing that based entirely on my own accumulated wealth of intellect and humour.

A life spent in pursuit of wealth is a life wasted. When I lie upon my deathbed I want my memories to be full of the things I have done, the people I have loved, not the expensive cars and designer handbags I have owned. When I look back over my life, what I will remember are experiences I have shared - a caress, laughter, a kiss, dancing, meetings and partings. I doubt I will give much thought to what I purchased over a lifetime. How joyless if all you can dredge up is "wow, remember that time I sold the house for over twice what I paid for it and then immediately reinvested it? I had a massive bank balance then, I did."

Of course, not all greed is mercenary. While I do not chase money I do greedily consume time and attention, always wanting more (though not always getting it, so I am saved from becoming a total monster.) And I have been known to wear fingerless gloves.

5 comments:

Ro said...

I'm with you on this one Luka.

One of the things that used to come between my ex and I were that I could not join her in such single-minded pursuit of the mighty dollar. I would insist on seeing a house as somewhere to live comfortably in rather than as an appreciating asset, and I had an annoying habit of insisting on trying to cram some semblance of a life in amid the work.

That said, I do hoard books and could easily spend vast sums of money accumulating CDs and DVDs. I guess that's verging on greed. I'd better keep a close and watchful eye on myself.

Jackie Adshead said...

Seems to me you have mastered greed very well in your control of all things fiscal. But being greedy for time, or a persons attention, is a lovely "sin" if you can use it well.

But in my mind - greed is for eating too much, as opposed to being avaricious - or am I getting them mixed up?

Jane's Teeth said...

This is my first visit. I am enjoying this "7 Deadly" series. But, I'm just a bit puzzled by your blog and I really find I must ask: Are you saying that bosoms AREN'T the answer!?!

Walker said...

Greed is the root of all eveil.
Saying that, the apple pie is mine, MINE i tell you

Luka said...

Ro - you sound like the ideal partner to me! I'd far rather have a home than a fixed asset.

You raise an interesting point - at what point does a collector simply become greedy, if at all?

Jackie - well, greed is more commonly used in connection with food, but in the context of deadly sins that role is taken by gluttony.

Jane's Teeth - my blog can be puzzling, I know. I am an enigma, wrapped in a mystery and dipped in lard. Bosoms should be the answer, but on rare occasions they simply aren't.Lord knows I've tried.

Walker - Ok, take your pie, but I'm having all the cream. ALL of it, you hear?