I digress though. Today is: If you could own one thing you don’t currently have, what would it be?
I’m really bad at this sort of question, as anyone in my family will confirm. I am useless at coming up with present lists for birthdays and so on. Partly I feel that my nearest and dearest ought to know I am happiest with a book token, but partly because I feel I already have quite enough material possessions, thank you very much. After living out of a rucksack for two months a couple of years ago on the epic train journey to China, I returned home determined to de-clutter my life. Sadly I have made barely any progress there, and feel I have been fighting materialist over-consumption ever since.
The thing about possessions is that it’s far to easy to never be satisfied with what you have. I suppose that’s at the root of why I feel uncomfortable with asking for more. Contentment with what we already have in this affluent environment is what we should be seeking. Along (of course)with appreciation of good health and family, and time to achieve and accomplish.
But there’s a more selfish reason as far as I’m concerned with not having what I want. It’s not good for art. Or, I should say, it’s not necessarily helpful for the creation of good art. The making of art and the nurturing of creativity thrives on constraint and challenge. Every artist has a wish list of materials which will be THE answer to the envisioned masterpiece. A new paint colour? A new drawing tool? Wonderful new paper from India? We’ve all perused the catalogues with delirious longing and the insistent nagging little voice which says ” Oh, but, if I just had THAT!”
Of course, if we succumb to temptation, it makes very little difference to ultimate happiness or success. Usually. It’s really not about what you have, but what you do with it.