This or That: The Materialistic Context

Define Necessity

We aren’t interested in debating the pros and cons of our materialistic life styles. This article’s intention is to look behind the mental make up of the consumers, extending the idea of popular choices that we discussed yesterday. Almost unanimously people, as consumers, tend to choose things that are mere replication of the ‘popular choice’. In world of consumerism the sellers name it ‘Trend’. Every year we notice something trending. Clothes most often get trended. Every year people fall madly in love with some designs, materials, styles and those get trendy.

Contemporary youths and people who desperately want to stick on with the youth category are very particular about trendy outfits. To them this is the paramount criteria to tag themselves ‘modern’. If, in a season, unkempt hair and dirty look trends people don’t have any issues to follow it. Because adapting this popular choice, they think, is the only choice to get identified with the group. No problem, if one likes formals actually. That can wait till it trends. Basically the urge to enable one identifiable with the group emerges from the lack of self identity.


When an individual lacks self identity there is desperation for creating one. To live with an identity crisis is not easier. Much easier is to get identified with a group. This attitude is different from collective consciousness. It’s an individual’s attempt to become a part of something that already exists and is recognized by many. Hence following it would save him from being the odd man out. Common human conscience doesn’t want to play the ‘odd man’.

Sellers and Manufactures design their commercials to promote their products, preliminarily to make them trend among customers. Marketing products – irrespective of their prices – is difficult only till they trend. Almost all commercial purchases, from chewing gums to cell phones to cars, are dominated by popular choices. It is this popular choice that defines the necessity of the contemporary man and not his real needs.


What’s thought as sophistication a decade ago has now become a necessity. Most of the purchases made by people today are nothing more than an attempt to ensure their social status. The modern world makes many of us believe that human happiness is realized only with materialistic things. Credit cards have changed entirely the way people shop.

The only escape from this swirl is to stop imitating and not letting the popular choices and opinions to dictate your needs.

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