Saturday, 24 April 2010

What is greed?

Why I've used the term greed instead of gluttony, is first because I don't feel comfortable with the term gluttony. It refers specifically to food and eating for a start, so I'd rather go with greed which refers to general acquisitiveness.

That's important, because if greed is wrong, it cannot be specifically wrong, it has to be generally wrong. If it's wrong to "over"eat, it's wrong to be drunk. If it is wrong to eat a lot, regularly, then it is wrong to have too much money, regularly. Yeah, already that doesn't sound quite right and that's the point.

When you are constantly accused of or fitted up to represent something, it makes you think about what that means. I'd like to examine what I think about greed and what I've learnt from having been/ being (it's hard to tell for reasons I'll go into another time) a greedy eater. Why was I that way? The usual response is nothing ie, you just were. Ummmm could you not think any harder?

In order to examine greed in a useful way, I need to learn to be fair. Contrary to populist belief, it's so easy to think, "I'm just greedy, bad me". This kills two birds with one stone as it tightens up your straight jacketing in the obesity persona and it serves as a way of saying, "I've stopped thinking here". In that sense it is highly moral, as it is efficient and not wasteful, like greed.

I need to think about it generally in order to assess what greed means and what it really means, by drawing on other examples of it. A lot of us are haunted by greed, we are dogged by the fear of it, or have been in the past in the way that continues to cast a shadow. That's gotten ancient, if we are greedy, then why should we be ashamed? If we're not, why should we feel we are?

As those frequently accused of being greedy, and yes many slim people are too, but we can't forget that mostly, slim people being greedy/gluttous is cute, we have dibs on what is and isn't greedy, we should examine it and help to define it, not the ignorant, who we've indulged for far too long.

And familiarity, can and should, in the case of greed, breed contempt....... for being disturbed by it anyhow.

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