I am not good enough, original sin, and marketing

 

I am not good enough. I am broken beyond repair.

These are core beliefs for many people.

Where do they come from?

The immediate cause may be childhood experiences and what the mind does with them to protect us.

The broader cause is to be found in our culture. For instance, the marketing industry intentionally reinforces our experience of not being good enough and then promise that their products will make us good enough – at least temporarily. They create a problem and then sell a product to fix it.

And it may reach all the way back to the Christian idea of original sin. In Christianity, we find the same strategy of creating a problem (original sin) and then selling a product to fix it (Jesus as a savior). Christianity has permeated our culture for a couple of millennia so it’s natural that the underlying beliefs and assumptions in Christianity still operate in our culture, even if many or most no longer consider themselves traditional Christians.

As usual, there is a lot more to explore here. For instance, is the core identity of “not good enough” found only in our culture or in all cultures? (I would guess it’s cultural more than inevitable.) It’s also clear that the marketing industry intentionally play on and reinforce people’s low self-esteem so it’s easier to sell them products and services.

There is also the issue of how to tackle this issue. When we work with individuals, it’s helpful to do inquiry on this and help people find freedom from this identity, and it’s also good to help them see the bigger picture and where it comes from in terms of marketing and culture. Working at a group level, we can support critical thinking and media literacy at all school levels, and also work with the marketing industry. (Media literacy also includes being critical to what’s sold by Christianity and other religions.) Ultimately, we need to shift out of a consumerist economy and into one that’s healthier for all of us, including ecosystems and future generations.

 

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Initial notes……

  • original sin
    • ingrained, many feel there is something (fundamentally) wrong with them
    • inherent in people across cultures? (possible but don’t think so)
    • influenced/reinforced by Christianity? (yes, likely, just by living in a Christian culture)
    • original sin + consumerism
    • original sin – initially to scare people to Christianity and to conform, and now leads to anxiety/depression/compulsions etc.

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What does Christianity and consumerism have in common? They both sell a product, and enlist poor self-esteem to do so.

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This is a possible connection many have noted: The idea of original sin in Christianity may be reflected in the current “not good enough” epidemic in our modern western society.

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Is the Christian idea of original sin, furthered by modern consumerism, behind the “not good enough” epidemic in modern western society? It may well be.

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Is there a connection between the Christian idea of original sin, modern consumerism, and the current epidemic of feeling inherently “not good enough” in modern western society?

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In inquiry, we find “I am not good enough” as a common core belief. It seems shared by many in our society, and it contributes to a lot of the anxiety, depression, compulsions, and self-esteem issues many experience. There is a sense of being inherently not good enough, and even inherently broken and beyond repair. It often doesn’t make sense, but it’s there. And although we can find early childhood experiences that brought us to create these identities to protect ourselves, there is also something in our culture supporting the creation of these identities.

And that something is likely the Christain idea of original sin. We are inherently sinful, flawed, beyond repair. (Our only hope for being saved is supernatural and comes from the outside.) And being smart and slightly cynical, the marketing industry is making full use of this.

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What could it be? What ideas in our culture would say we are inherently flawed and beyond repair? The Christian idea of original sin.

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Is there a connection between the Christian idea of original sin, consumerism, and the current “not good enough” epidemic in modern western society? Yes, there may well be, as many have pointed out.

In inquiry, we often find “I am not good enough” as a core belief. It seems shared by many in our society, and it contributes to the anxiety, depression, compulsions, and self-esteem issues many experience. There is a sense of being inherently not good enough, and even inherently broken and beyond repair. We can find early childhood experiences that explain how these identities were created, but since they are so prevalent there must also be something in our culture supporting the creation of these identities.

What could it be? What ideas in our culture would say we are inherently flawed and beyond repair? The Christian idea of original sin.

……

And that something is likely the Christain idea of original sin. We are inherently sinful, flawed, beyond repair. (Our only hope for being saved is supernatural and comes from the outside.) And the marketing industry has

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Initial draft……

Is there a connection between the Christian idea of original sin, consumerism, and the current “not good enough” epidemic in modern western society? Yes, there may well be, as many have pointed out.

In inquiry, we often find “I am not good enough” as a core belief. It seems shared by many in our society, and it contributes to the anxiety, depression, compulsions, and self-esteem issues many experience. There is a sense of being inherently not good enough, and even inherently broken and beyond repair. We can find early childhood experiences that explain how these identities were created, but since they are so prevalent there must also be something in our culture supporting the creation of these identities.

What could it be? What ideas in our culture would say we are inherently flawed and beyond repair? The obvious one is the Christian idea of original sin, more recently accompanied by the messages of the marketing industry. Both of these reinforce an idea of us being inherently flawed and they both sell their own products as a way to save us (Jesus as our savior, and beauty products and services along with consumerism in general).

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And that something is likely the Christain idea of original sin. We are inherently sinful, flawed, beyond repair. (Our only hope for being saved is supernatural and comes from the outside.) And the marketing industry has

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