Modernized poverty appears when the intensity of market dependence reaches a certain threshold. Subjectively, it is the experience of frustrating affluence which occurs in persons mutilated by their overwhelming reliance on the riches of industrial productivity. Simply, it deprives those affected by it of their freedom and power to act autonomously, to live creatively; it confines them to survival through being plugged into market relations. And precisely because this new impotence is so deeply experienced, it is with difficulty expressed. – IVAN ILLICH http://www.primitivism.com/needs-illich.htm
I find this to be so very true. This is a philosopher guy who died 8 years ago, but boy don’t his words ring true today.
It’s beyond this ‘taking your coffeemaker and electric switch for granted”. It speaks to a level in which we are, as he states, mutilated by the over-reliance on all this stuff.
It is an interesting thing to think about, even in a context in which I don’t plan to necessarily voluntarily give up the trappings of 1st world/developed goods and services. Interesting because of that operational word: voluntarily. As in, who knows what the future will bring us all? Will we ever in our lifetimes have to face the falling away of our standard of living (for if you’re reading this, you are, also, complicit in these living standards), and will we survive? Perhaps maybe even thrive?