Not wanting something you've obtained that is "apparently" good

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    Aug 13, 2009 9:31 AM GMT
    I have a somewhat hypothetical question that I'd like to ask.. I hope, without full understanding why I'm asking this question people can still perhaps answer it.

    There are certain things in this life, that society places as a great "thing" to obtain, things that, society deems a worth while pursuit, that to obtain these "things" will other "things" along with it.

    These things are like love, companionship, money, security, friends, home, family, happiness, these things that supposedly are universal deliverers of contentment and peace for ones self and family.

    You see it everywhere you look, people are busying them self with this objective if you will, to obtain these "things" that if you fall behind on others will try and help you get back on track as it where.

    If you completely object or even reject these "ideas" these erm "things" you start getting funny remarks, looks, people start looking at you oddly, those same people who loved you for being you, suddenly are uncomfortable about being there anymore.. all because you no longer want that same thing and so when they as they do..

    And I'm not talking on a sexual level here, this is something it seems deeper, far deeper inbeded into people about these things I'm talking about and it almost seems single minded and focused..

    Oddly occasionally you get someone who says "I don't want that either" and yet, face to face, when they tell you this, you see it in there eyes, they are lying, not just to me, but trying to lie to them self...

    So, my question before I become side tracked completely by my own thoughts, are, if you have acquired these things already, why the shock or disappointment maybe? the comments, the oddly behavior when that person decides that it isn't for them? when that person rejects that "ideal" that "thing" that you drive so hard for?

    I ask, because I am attempting to understand something happening in my life, that increasingly late nights pondering this thought is not answering.

    NOW, if you ever wanted to know how my head works.. this is actually pretty accurate hahaha I understand my self exactly hahaha icon_biggrin.gif
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    Aug 13, 2009 10:06 AM GMT


    The things that you listed,
    love, companionship, money, security, friends, home, family, happiness, with the exception of money seems to be all good by nature. Love is worth sharing and all those other things fall in line. Money just allows one to be in true form as it speaks at a much higher volume to most people, and is respected by it's dollar amt. dude whatever it is I'm sure you'll wrk thru it and come thru re-energized and re-focused. Those things like most play a huge role in socialization and self worth as well
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    Aug 13, 2009 11:47 AM GMT
    muchmorethanmuscle saidBig B. You need to work on that English. That was a hard read.

    hahaha unfortunately, when I don't understand something fully, I struggle massively to articulate what I feel.. major reason I never go to other people with problems.

    muchmorethanmuscle saidIf I understand correctly I think people simply can't relate when you tell these people that something isn't for you (e.g. companionship, love, basically the things you've listed).

    People come together because they can see qualities that they are either seeking themselves, or already have. When people look at others and can't see any shared major interests they reject that person. And this is usually done with a lot of judgment.

    To complicate matters even more, when you change your ideals and start to reject the things you thought you once wanted you're going to alienate your existing network of friends. I see it happen a lot.

    I'm stuck on this.. icon_confused.gif not stuck on what you've written but how this plays out in life.
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    Aug 13, 2009 12:57 PM GMT
    lilTanker saidSo, my question before I become side tracked completely by my own thoughts, are, if you have acquired these things already, why the shock or disappointment maybe? the comments, the oddly behavior when that person decides that it isn't for them? when that person rejects that "ideal" that "thing" that you drive so hard for?


    It's cliche, but still... For many of us, it really is more about the journey than the destination. We're all fed these ideas about the "things" we should want (including "things" that are really mind-sets, like contentment and peace) and we rarely question that.

    And those things may really be totally fulfilling for most people. But there are many different types of people, and you may have just learned that the things you sought aren't what you really want. Maybe it doesn't even matter what you're striving for, as long as you're striving.

    Incidentally, what's so great about inner peace anyway? Granted that no one wants complete inner chaos but, unless you're striving for Oneness With The Universe, it doesn't seem like that should really be your focus.
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Aug 13, 2009 1:00 PM GMT
    The cultural ideal and the cultural reality have always been two different things. I think the divide between the two in western culture is growing larger. Part of the game of society is paying lip service to the cultural ideal while living the reality. Those who do it well have success and are often rewarded by us for it. But their position becomes more precarious the higher they go.
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    Aug 13, 2009 1:55 PM GMT


    "These things are like love, companionship, money, security, friends, home, family, happiness, these things that supposedly are universal deliverers of contentment and peace for ones self and family."


    Hmm, I'd say the above 'things' make life a little easier. Happiness is a pretty big one, and both of us are a little confused by the idea of someone not wanting any happiness in their lives.

    Lol, when we think about it, wouldn't someone not wanting happiness be a little, well, hard to be around? It infers that the person would be trying to stop happiness from occurring in their presence as they don't want to feel it. Same goes for love in all its forms, whether it be friendships, familial love or that of a lover; if you don't want to experience it then it seems it would become necessary to withhold it from others so it isn't reciprocated.

    Now the rest: companionship, money, security, friends, home and family are entirely optional. Some people love being alone. Money is something the more austere feel is a trap, though it does put food in you, and a roof over your head. Security can be a strait-jacket for the more adventurous and wild among us.

    Friends? Not if you like being solitary. Home is not for rolling stones. Many toss aside family if family is a dysfunctional drag on them.


    How's that?

    As well, if you say to your family that you don't want them, then would it be a surprise that they look at you oddly? Same for friendship/companionship. This is not necessarily a bad thing, depending on the family or the 'friend'.


    -Doug
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    Aug 13, 2009 2:30 PM GMT
    I like this deeper side of ITtanker, and as far as your writing goes I understood perfectly well what you meant. Perhaps you need to use a richer vocabulary. icon_smile.gif "Things" is a rather weak word.

    It looks like meninlove beat me to my response. Everything you've mention has an "at what cost" side to it. Companionship is great if it has a positive influence but not if the two are holding each other back. As far as happiness, this is a temporary state that Americans love to think of as everlasting. But without unhappiness there is no happiness. In fact this is true for everything you have listed. Take security. As people become more obsessed about achieving security they become more fearful of the most minor issues. We only need one goal in life and that is to achieve a degree of harmony with our environment. Rather than trying to control our environment we need to be able to adapt quickly as it changes. That is why I have such a passion for adventure sports and traveling. I feel the fears I must master and hurdles I must overcome test my survival skills. I believe these challenges keep me more alive, healthy, and fulfilled than many who have seemingly achieved the portrait of a happy home. When I stop challenging myself, depression sets in.

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    Aug 13, 2009 2:51 PM GMT
    I certainly believe that there are many happy people in this world. I consider myself one of them. However, I do believe that GREED is why so many people are unhappy. I've encountered countless people who've forfeited all interests, curiosities and intellectual expansion that don't revolve around making more money and increasing consumption.

    Is life all about consumption? More money, more sex, more electronics and material possesions, more love, more security, more power, more attractiveness. The list is endless.

    And it can all change, or end, in a flash.

    Maybe its simply human nature.

    I'm not arguing against having dreams and aspirations so that your emotional and financial life improves. I am saying that there is so much pressure to get these things before we all die and if you don't, you're supposed to think you are missing out on happiness.

    The Op's question is deliberately cryptic. Perhaps he should just be more specific about his concerns.

    Somehow, someway, I've grown into a life and lifestyle that most people might want. My bills are paid. My health is great. My job is rewarding. I'm educated and street smart, having been on my own since 16 and putting myself through college. I take care of myself and have attained a terrific body through exercise and good diet habits. And mom and dad gave me genes that, according some people, makes me handsome.

    But what does it all mean? Sometimes everything is a big haze in a world that values so much that I can't relate to. Having all these desirable things creates a weird sense of isolation..... skills to play a game that I don't want to participate in.

    Having inner peace and gratitude because of, or in spite of these things is essential...........more important are the little things.

    Thank god for my true friends ( I can count them on one hand). They see ME and relate to ME as the person I am, not a personality.

    So what's missing? I don't know.....yet. Stop complaining? Maybe. I wish there were more people in this world who had inner peace, or at least strive for it.

    The saying, "Be careful, you may get what you wish for" has truth to it.

    I hope the OP continues to question and search for answers, as everyone should.

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 13, 2009 3:13 PM GMT
    I want all those things.

    grass.jpg
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Aug 13, 2009 3:23 PM GMT
    Sedative saidI want all those things.

    grass.jpg


    Wonka.gif
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    Aug 13, 2009 3:49 PM GMT
    *hugs his teddy bear, traumatized*
  • MikemikeMike

    Posts: 6932

    Aug 13, 2009 3:52 PM GMT
    lilTanker saidI have a somewhat hypothetical question that I'd like to ask.. I hope, without full understanding why I'm asking this question people can still perhaps answer it.

    There are certain things in this life, that society places as a great "thing" to obtain, things that, society deems a worth while pursuit, that to obtain these "things" will other "things" along with it.

    These things are like love, companionship, money, security, friends, home, family, happiness, these things that supposedly are universal deliverers of contentment and peace for ones self and family.

    You see it everywhere you look, people are busying them self with this objective if you will, to obtain these "things" that if you fall behind on others will try and help you get back on track as it where.

    If you completely object or even reject these "ideas" these erm "things" you start getting funny remarks, looks, people start looking at you oddly, those same people who loved you for being you, suddenly are uncomfortable about being there anymore.. all because you no longer want that same thing and so when they as they do..

    And I'm not talking on a sexual level here, this is something it seems deeper, far deeper inbeded into people about these things I'm talking about and it almost seems single minded and focused..

    Oddly occasionally you get someone who says "I don't want that either" and yet, face to face, when they tell you this, you see it in there eyes, they are lying, not just to me, but trying to lie to them self...

    So, my question before I become side tracked completely by my own thoughts, are, if you have acquired these things already, why the shock or disappointment maybe? the comments, the oddly behavior when that person decides that it isn't for them? when that person rejects that "ideal" that "thing" that you drive so hard for?

    I ask, because I am attempting to understand something happening in my life, that increasingly late nights pondering this thought is not answering.

    NOW, if you ever wanted to know how my head works.. this is actually pretty accurate hahaha I understand my self exactly hahaha icon_biggrin.gif


    this is one for his shrink!!
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    Aug 13, 2009 3:59 PM GMT
    [quote][cite]MikemikeMike said

    this is one for his shrink!![/quote]


    Maybe he IS the shrink and we are the patients.
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    Aug 13, 2009 4:11 PM GMT
    I don't have a shrink icon_razz.gif I have tried though, but I find them irritating, they are always attempting to stop my thinking process and explain everything to them, which is disruptive when trying to work things out.

    When I have a problem I become obsessively focused on it to the point of excluding a great many other things, but my head jumps around looking at as many views and ideas as possible, asking subtle questions of people and even researching things, I find trying to put a therapist in that horrendous, However, the shiny side is there minds are usually incredibly keen and analytical and of course understand things about people that I do not know anything about, so I can usually pepper them with questions icon_biggrin.gif

    Jp, I'd never thought about that before, in my group of friends I am on the whole the strongest personality, however they are all strong willed in there own ways..
    While I'm not sure how it'll fit in, it's sure given me something more to think about and perhaps ask a few things of the people around me, if anything, it'll give me a new view to explore.

    Oh and I'm really enjoying reading peoples perspectives on my question and KissingPro, I have been intentionally cryptic, partly because I'd prefer to keep the reasons that have lead to this away from public view and because I'm curious about peoples interpretations of what I'm asking.
  • MikemikeMike

    Posts: 6932

    Aug 13, 2009 4:50 PM GMT
    lilTanker saidI don't have a shrink icon_razz.gif I have tried though, but I find them irritating, they are always attempting to stop my thinking process and explain everything to them, which is disruptive when trying to work things out.

    When I have a problem I become obsessively focused on it to the point of excluding a great many other things, but my head jumps around looking at as many views and ideas as possible, asking subtle questions of people and even researching things, I find trying to put a therapist in that horrendous, However, the shiny side is there minds are usually incredibly keen and analytical and of course understand things about people that I do not know anything about, so I can usually pepper them with questions icon_biggrin.gif

    Jp, I'd never thought about that before, in my group of friends I am on the whole the strongest personality, however they are all strong willed in there own ways..
    While I'm not sure how it'll fit in, it's sure given me something more to think about and perhaps ask a few things of the people around me, if anything, it'll give me a new view to explore.

    Oh and I'm really enjoying reading peoples perspectives on my question and KissingPro, I have been intentionally cryptic, partly because I'd prefer to keep the reasons that have lead to this away from public view and because I'm curious about peoples interpretations of what I'm asking.


    Ok that must be the reason for the glasses post- I think you might have a little asbergers or adult ADD.icon_idea.gif
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    Aug 13, 2009 4:52 PM GMT
    MikemikeMike said
    Ok that must be the reason for the glaases post- I think you might have a little asbergers or adult ADD.icon_idea.gif

    OMG You SO totally have me pegs.. I mean WOW,I can't believe I spent SOO Long with NO IDEA!!!!!!!!!!

    Really... Seriously.. WOW
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    Aug 13, 2009 7:19 PM GMT
    lilTanker saidI have a somewhat hypothetical question that I'd like to ask.. I hope, without full understanding why I'm asking this question people can still perhaps answer it.

    There are certain things in this life, that society places as a great "thing" to obtain, things that, society deems a worth while pursuit, that to obtain these "things" will other "things" along with it.

    These things are like love, companionship, money, security, friends, home, family, happiness, these things that supposedly are universal deliverers of contentment and peace for ones self and family.

    You see it everywhere you look, people are busying them self with this objective if you will, to obtain these "things" that if you fall behind on others will try and help you get back on track as it where.

    If you completely object or even reject these "ideas" these erm "things" you start getting funny remarks, looks, people start looking at you oddly, those same people who loved you for being you, suddenly are uncomfortable about being there anymore.. all because you no longer want that same thing and so when they as they do..

    And I'm not talking on a sexual level here, this is something it seems deeper, far deeper inbeded into people about these things I'm talking about and it almost seems single minded and focused..

    Oddly occasionally you get someone who says "I don't want that either" and yet, face to face, when they tell you this, you see it in there eyes, they are lying, not just to me, but trying to lie to them self...

    So, my question before I become side tracked completely by my own thoughts, are, if you have acquired these things already, why the shock or disappointment maybe? the comments, the oddly behavior when that person decides that it isn't for them? when that person rejects that "ideal" that "thing" that you drive so hard for?

    I ask, because I am attempting to understand something happening in my life, that increasingly late nights pondering this thought is not answering.

    NOW, if you ever wanted to know how my head works.. this is actually pretty accurate hahaha I understand my self exactly hahaha icon_biggrin.gif


    Nothing lasts forever, and you're beginning to comprehend that.
    So, if you can make do without some of these things, that's okay. You don't have to want what everyone thinks they want, everybody's different. And not everybody will understand you either; it will just be a waste of time explaining to everyone how you think and feel, because nobody is open enough or willing enough to even understand themselves so they can't reciprocate.
    So if i were you mate, live your life by how you see fit, you don't need permission from anybody to do that.
  • MikemikeMike

    Posts: 6932

    Aug 18, 2009 5:51 PM GMT
    lilTanker said
    MikemikeMike said
    Ok that must be the reason for the glaases post- I think you might have a little asbergers or adult ADD.icon_idea.gif

    OMG You SO totally have me pegs.. I mean WOW,I can't believe I spent SOO Long with NO IDEA!!!!!!!!!!

    Really... Seriously.. WOW


    I minored in psych in college. People with it have trouble understanding the Id/ego of others and what is going on in the minds of others They usually think everyone thinks as they do and if not they get uncomfortable around them or defensive and/or act out. Yeah I'd say I'm right. My b/f has a doctorate in psych, and works with special needs kids. I had him read your post. Don't get mad --get the right kind of help, or be lonely and don't complain then and just keep acting out!icon_idea.gif
  • Sparkycat

    Posts: 1064

    Aug 18, 2009 6:03 PM GMT
    If people are looking at you oddly it might have nothing to do with which of those things you prefer or don't prefer.

    I think you should be more specific about what you want or don't want. You can share. It will be just between us.

    Set your own rules. It's your life. Screw society.
  • Sparkycat

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    Aug 18, 2009 6:04 PM GMT
    I think you're cute.
  • outdoorjunkie

    Posts: 118

    Aug 18, 2009 6:30 PM GMT
    lilTanker saidI have a somewhat hypothetical question that I'd like to ask.. I hope, without full understanding why I'm asking this question people can still perhaps answer it....

    icon_biggrin.gif


    I completely understand where you're coming from. In responding, I'm taking "thing" to mean something a bit larger than, say, what I'm going to eat for breakfast today. Like you said - happiness, home, friends, security, etc.

    You're speaking of a very deep, very difficult aspect of western civilization, namely, the acquisition of things (immaterial or material) to satisfy a perceived state of harmony. I realize it's unfair to categorize everyone in "western civilization" this way, but I will cast a large net because I think it's a pretty safe one to cast, in this circumstance.

    I am embroiled in this as much as you, mainly due to the fact that I was raised with ideas of what constituted happiness and harmony. I think the problem lies in reality vs. value forecasting, as it were. We take a tremendous amount of time, energy, and thought to forecast what some "thing" will mean to us once we have it. We trump up the way we will feel when we have it, how it will be seen by our friends, what it will mean for our continued being and how it will feel to be a part of us. The problem is when we forecast like this, we are at odds with our desires because we're attempting to satisfy some "thing" that is yet intangible.

    I'm trying to think of what drives this state of mind, and I come up with many things. A hyper-consumerist culture, one's upbringing, one's wealth, survival needs, competition...

    In the end, I think of what it was to desire a toy as a child. At Christmas, I would fantasize about holding it, playing with it, and making it my very own. If I received that toy, I sometimes felt unbelievably unfulfilled and was almost immediately disconnected from everything I had previously built in my mind. Not only was it not the way I had imagined, but it was almost foreign to me, as though I received something I had never even thought about and didn't want.

    I don't believe the adult versions of ourselves have grown out of this action. And I don't really know how we could. It is important to want "things," but what's perhaps more important is to be cognizant of how we're building up that "thing" in our mind. Things are rarely what you perceive them to be. When we discover things aren't "for" us anymore (for instance, friends with whom you just don't have much in common anymore), it is extremely jarring.

    What matters is that you're giving this critical thought without plowing over your emotions and state of mind. For my part, I try my hardest to realize that disappointment is always on the horizon when I'm reaching for a goal (or "thing"). I don't think of this as a doom-and-gloom scenario, simply that the reality is I cannot KNOW what some "thing" will mean to me until I have it. And how could I?



  • DanielQQ

    Posts: 365

    Aug 18, 2009 6:59 PM GMT
    The way you ask the question, Ben, leads me to think you have some personal experience rejecting one or more of these ideals. Otherwise, how would you know about people giving you funny looks?

    As humans, we have basic needs. You've listed some of them... security, companionship, love... when someone fails to meet these needs, it usually leads to unhappiness or pathology. That said, there are some people who genuinely don't require these needs in a normal way. In today's medical model western system of health, however, these people are usually categorized as having some disorder. Personally, I don't like this model but I do think that it's strange to not want love or security or companionship... it usually means there is some psychological blockage at work (else it's neurological).

    I also find it interesting that you say "Oddly occasionally you get someone who says "I don't want that either" and yet, face to face, when they tell you this, you see it in there eyes, they are lying, not just to me, but trying to lie to them self..." To be honest, when I read this it occurred to me that this sense of "lying" you see in others eyes might be a reflection of your own lie you keep telling yourself... that you don't need love or companionship or security (you threw money in there but money is in a completely different category as the other ideals you listed).

    I can't answer your question though because I don't feel shock or disappointment or when someone decides they don't want these ideals. I just feel curious, and I usually explore to learn more.


    maslow.gif
    Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs
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    Aug 18, 2009 7:19 PM GMT
    lilTanker saidI have been intentionally cryptic... because I'm curious about peoples interpretations of what I'm asking.


    Now, now... Is someone playing shrink? icon_razz.gif

    Such is life, and we keep discovering things, forgetting and re-discovering them. We are such forgetful people!

    Yes, society may dictate something, but the context is that society. Move to another place, and their expectations may be totally different. Hence, it is much better questioning what you really want in this life, and living with it. It is your life, and what you make of it. You do not have to conform to society's wishes, since you might think differently from the majority of people.

    What so great about contentment anyway? Too much contentment will lead to complacency... icon_razz.gif
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    Aug 18, 2009 8:00 PM GMT
    When I think of matters and existential stuff such as this, I always recall that Sinead O'Connor album title:

    I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got

    It puts a little perspective on that societal, hell almost instinctual urge to fit in, to obtain, to achieve, to be normative. Especially when you exist in a state of some sort - racial minority, sexual minority, physical disability, etc - that prevents you from ever even attaining the norm/pinnacle/etc. It involves a lot of letting go. Which requires less effort post-decision, but making that decision is tough.
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    Aug 18, 2009 9:16 PM GMT
    I have everything, when I have nothing; nothing, when I have everything.