I was talking with a dear friend of mine recently about how we’d never be rich. I watch the shows on tv, I see the ads in the magazines and I’m horrified. The word luxury is thrown around for all kinds of crap I don’t need.
Luxury to me is a hot bubble bath with candles and good music.
Luxury is a laughing with good friends.
Luxury is being able to feed people who need food. It’s having enough to share or the ability to go without. Luxury is being able to help others.
I’m not saying I don’t have my materialistic indulgences, far from it. If you want to watch me blow a paycheck just drop me in a bookstore and let me loose.
I like nice things but there’s a limit. There’s things that are just immoral to me. To spend more on a pair of shoes than an average low income family spends on rent is obscene. To spend $1500 on snap on teeth shaped like a celebrity’s smile so I can pretend to be Halle–as if!– is just not okay. I watched a show the other day (I don’t even know what it was called because I could only bear to see a few minutes) where a family was spending $37,000 on an entertainment center set up. I can’t even understand that. I can’t understand hummer limos, I can’t understand how people can live with themselves knowing that they are wearing enough money to feed a family with small children for a few months. I can’t understand it.
Instead of buying all the crap they tell me is luxury I chose to define it my way. Luxury is hugging my puppy. It’s swimming in the ocean when the sun is making golden trails on the water. It’s a cup of tea and a good book on a stormy day, it’s standing in the presence of beauty, of the sacred, of love. It’s freshly laundered sheets and hours to make love on them, it’s fresh mangoes and fresh sprigs of lavender and a poem that makes me cry. It’s a cold glass of champagne or fresh chocolate.
To define luxury as expensive things that I must possess would make me someone I’m not. It would make me less human. It would make me less compassionate. It would make me disconnected from the world around me. I don’t think I could live with myself if I had thousands of dolars of Things. I’ll never be rich because I don’t care enough about money, I care more about people, and justice and peace and luxurious intangibles.