Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Terrible Tuesday - Greed

For more Seven Deadly Sins Carnival posts, go see Lunanik.

When I think about what I crave, what I'm greedy for the most, it's changed through the years, but there is an underlying greed for validation that has remained consistent throughout.

Greed is most often thought of in the more traditional definition of the insatiable desire for more money or possessions. But what causes that desire? What do people get from having more money or possessions? Is it just to say, "mine, mine, mine?" Underneath that "mine, mine" is some sense of feeling validated. The more obvious feeling would be entitlement, but again, I think that sense of entitlement comes from feeling validated that they deserved it to begin with.

I often associate greed with an insatiable desire for power. Again, what does that power mean? That they're validated somehow.

Inside all of us, that ego needs to be stroked. That sense of who we are is okay is what we all desire most.

Greed is the overindulgence of that. Greed is akin to most addictions; an unhealthy way to deal with our insecurities, and our quest for validation.

Now, that certainly doesn't make it okay. Greed turns my stomach, particularly greed for power to control others. At some point, people's issues are not acceptable excuses for their behavior. But it's something to think about.

*and that's as far as I can go with this. I know there's more, but I don't have the brain power right now to get there. So I open it up to you...*


GetSmartGal said...

April, I think you said it well Greed = a deeper insecurity. Using the need for excess to compensate for a deficiency somewhere else.

The real trick is figuring out what your overcompensating for and working on that.

Sully Sullivan said...

Both you and Bridget above me are spot on.

Everyone is searching for validation. Back before we invented things like morals and law...validation came in the form of brutally slaying an animal or gasp...even a fellow human. Although the world is far safer and more improved now than when we were all savages, the void of carnal validation remains. So if we cannot fill it with that urge to kill and destroy inherent in all of us, to what do we turn? Money, love, power in the non-physical sense, etc. All intangible conjures of humanity, and all cheap substitutes for proof of worth. This is why professional athletes are cocky arrogant (and ultimately emotionally secure) assholes: they are performing in the closest arena we have left to what it was all about in primitive times. You ever wonder why office workers are more prone to a meltdown at the workplace than construction workers? Physical validation of their work.

Wow I really went on and on there. I find your blog both interesting and thought provoking. I have bookmarked it. I know second-hand that being a lawyer is stressful. If you ever need a laugh, visit my pop culture comedy blog. However I warn you, it is neither as intelligent or insightful as the above reply so don't get your hopes up. I'm only intelligent once a year and I saved it for a reply to your blog :)

LunaNik said...

Greed as the underlying drive for power, control, and validation.

Yes, yes, yes.

You hit the nail so perfectly on the head.

Kori said...

Yep, you validated that I am, in fact, a greedy fucker. No wonder shit keeps going wrong in my life. Thanks. Will be drowning myself later, so if I don't show up for, you know, EVER, you will know what happened.

Jen said...

I agree with the greed=insecurity thing. I've seen that play out over and over as a teacher.

MarĂ­a said...

I'm attempting to eliminate the greediest person I've ever known from life right now. It's a horrible thing to be - greedy.

Anonymous said...

Ugh. You always make me think too much for a comment box.

Stop making me think! :)

Anonymous said...

My brain is fried right now too, so all I've got is "excellent post". Lame, I know, but it IS a great entry. Sometimes we can say more in a few words than in a thousand. ;)

Anonymous said...

I've fallen so behind on my Terrible Tuesday posts. I really have to get back on the bandwagon...

I've never really understood the whole greed impulse. Sure there are things I would like to have that I don't, but I think it's important to know the difference between want and need. Nothing drives me crazier than lust for power. If I see that personality try to avoid them at all costs.