- Religion and Philosophy
The "American Dream" may be a "Christian Nightmare"
The "American Dream" of home ownership, 2.2 kids, white picket fence, etc... may just be a "nightmare" to achieve and have. I say this from a Christian perspective. The whole "dream" is all about ownership & acievement, not that theres anything wrong with achieving perse, it's just that the way this dream is often obtained as well as what is achieved is usually centered on self. No allotment for others, and done through the power & effort of one self.
Worldwide, no nation comes near America in home ownership, most other countries predominantly rent. Also, square footage of living space in America exceeds other nations and many of us still feel it isn't enough. There are many factors to our space needs, the first one is a given, we have to much stuff - period! I could expound on this, but do I really need to? I mean heck, there are tv shows now about this problem. The second factor, which I think we often miss may well be that were seeking enough room to get away from one another. Lets face it, we've each got our own gadgets & gizmos, along with our own movie, music and media preferences. Why even try to settle or agree on a like or mutual interest, to each their own! Throw in quick microwavable meals and we don't even all have to eat the same dinner!
The high divorce rate in this country, combined with the statistics of teen (and even younger) crime, violence & suicide might just back-up this breakdown and seperation as a cause. Once again, worldwide were the leader - hmmm. Lets see, most "stuff", least success of what matters. America used to lead the world in good things, has our success caused a downfall? It seems the things that matter most to Christian families are the things failing the most in our predominatly Christian nation. These things seem to impact "Churched" families at about the same level as unchurched.
Lets hope that we wake up soon and see that "less" really is "more". Truly, it seems the more we have, the less we have time for the important stuff. The bigger the home, the more cleaning, repair & maintainence required. The bigger the home, the bigger the payment, the taxes and the insurance. The more stuff we put in the (bigger) home the more cleaning, service & repair we incur on that. Like an automobile, the more options you get, the more things that can go wrong - and the more it costs all the way around. I just read the other day that even for all the modern advancements of the last 50 - 60 years housework still takes up on average the same amount of time as it did in the 1950's, why? So much more square footage to clean, so much more stuff to clean (and clean around).
Think about this (as to time), for every repair needed, even if it is under warranty, the time is still required to wait for the service person - or take the item into a shop. Our pssessions begin to "own & consume" us. Not to mention that in most families it likely takes 2 incomes to support it all. So the kids (& Gov't schools) raise the kids, the parents (if together) work endlessly to pay for stuff that they don't have much time for, and will likely consume what precious little time they do have. Maybe, less truly is more and then allows for MORE of what truly matters.
I'm not debunking anyones right to home ownership or buying everything they wish, this is a free country. But I'd at least consider these factors when shopping, especially if we profess Christ. All things are allowed, but not all things are beneficial.