This is a long read, as they say, but pretty thoughtful and compelling to followers of this Tumblr, I suspect. It asks, in essence, if the problem we face “is not that [we] value material things too much – but that [we don’t] truly value them enough?”
The challenge is to cherish our possessions enough to care about where they came from, who made them, what will happen to them in the future In recent years, a range of voices from science, philosophy, political activism and the arts have begun to suggest exactly that, coalescing into a movement that can ground us ever more mindfully in the material world. The ‘new materialism’, as it was dubbed in a report by the New Economics Foundation in 2012, challenges us to love our possessions not less but more – to cherish them enough to care about where they came from, who made them, what will happen to them in the future.
Increasingly the things we throw away have value. In a consumerist world, with diminishing resources, rubbish is being recycled like never before. The recycling industry is now worth $US500 billion a year and it employs more people worldwide than any other industry except agriculture.
Trash is no longer just an environmental problem, it’s an economic opportunity. We learn how the stuff of our past is helping to fuel the demand of tomorrow.
Great episode of the Australian radio show Future Tense. Worth a listen.