I have been having a small crisis within myself over personal desire. I really, really want a big screen TV but I know that I really can't justify such excess to myself. I try to play it off as the last big, self-involved purchase I'd make (other than replacing things that will eventually breakdown like a car) but it is just so colossally self-centered even I am having a hard time swallowing it.
I could take the money I'd spend on a TV and go to the cinema twice a week for three years. I'd probably get more utility out of the TV though. One friend suggested that if I felt so bad about it I should just 'work it off' with hours of service donated to charity. It's a good idea and might help assuage my conscience but I'm still reeling from the fact at how badly I want it. I can't believe how much personal satisfaction I would derive from it. Strangely, if it were stolen or destroyed I wouldn't really bat an eyelash. I don't think I have an emotional attachment to the object itself but, for me, the attaining of a home theatre has long been a goal of mine. It says to me that I've reached the highest level of personal wealth I care to reach. I have a fair-sized home, a sensible car and the missing piece of my entertainment system would be the final jewel in my First World crown.
Which brings me back to the kind of person that sets goals such as these. I guess I'm just not the same person who made these goals and yet I am the person who won't feel fulfilled without them. I'm being pushed and pulled by my desire for things and my desire to act responsibly as a human. Does the desire to satisfy personal goals outweigh the value of the good I could do with the money elsewhere? Where can I comfortably draw that line? These are questions I'm currently struggling to answer for myself.
I'm closing in on thirty and where and how I draw satisfaction is changing which I'm finding awkward. It's as though I were going through an adolescence of morality. I'm sure having a child will change that even further. I have a lot of thinking to do...