Advertising often tries to convince you that happiness is outside. If you echo this message, you start to feel frustration, pain and a lot of bitterness.
We live in an increasingly reified world. Throughout the world thousands of people barely survive on a crust of bread or a bowl of rice per family, while a few blocks from there perhaps some others cram the supermarket cart with food that will expire before being tasted. Multi-million dollar budgets are used to buy weapons and arm themselves to the teeth, and very poor items to buy books in schools and pay teachers.
The voice on the tv
You turn on the television, you watch the advertising and someone Machiavellian tries to convince you that happiness is outside. If you echo this message, you start to feel frustration, pain and a lot of bitterness. It seems that if you fail to achieve “that” that is supposed to make you happy, the ship will leave and others will be the ones celebrating from the side, while the shark looks at you with greedy eyes.
Stop and think
Are we going to continue educating our children in the obsession of the pursuit of wealth? Someone has to stop in the midst of so much stupidity. Doesn’t anyone care to be happy? “Marta,” you will say, “if I barely have a lot of money, how can I be responsible for so much wild capitalism?” And here appears a part that is ours: responsibility at every moment. We are responsible for our choices and our decisions.
Viktor Fränkl said that being responsible is responding. And to whom do we answer? To others, yourself and God. There is no collective guilt. The responsibility is individual. We cannot excuse ourselves in “I didn’t go, it was them.” These types of phrases leave the door open for escape and that no one takes charge of their part.
When the idea is imposed that giving is synonymous with spending, loving is synonymous with quantity, happiness is synonymous with having, living is synonymous with speed, we are going crazy or, worse, losing our sense of morality.
Messages you choose to give:
One more food in the fridge, one more inch in the living room, one more piece of clothing in the wardrobe, one more toy to throw away in a few days, a few more hours to work (“You have to pay the credit card,” Remember the voice on the TV). Hours less to hug, celebrate, love and play. «I see the children on the weekend» – you say to calm your conscience, and you add without blinking -: «I am taking them to Don Hamburger», to convince you that you are a great mother.
But if your three-year-old son sees you desperate for Grandma’s Day thinking about what novelty item to buy, you’ve already let his eyes look in dollars at the moments he should see in terms of happiness. It is true, times have changed, now the fashion is to buy, I do not dispute it. But nobody tells you that this fashion leads you to objectify others, and you forget that being, hugging, laughing and chatting are gifts that do not expire, do not need a barcode or generate taxes.
If your adolescent daughter hears you talking about your new partner: “Juan is wonderful, you don’t know what car he has” and you add excitedly: “He also has a house on the beach,” I assure you that you are reaffirming the message on the television. If you teach her that to discover a good man she must take out the calculating machine, rest assured that when she dies she will have no idea if she was ever loved in her life.
When you say to your eleven-year-old son before entering high school: “I could not study, I hope you can help me with your profession,” you are giving him the same message as advertising. You stop seeing your child as a person to see him as a good, you turn him into a medium and put aside his singular essence.
The man on the television can fill your mind with messages, he is a guy with no sense of morals, do not let them enter your soul.