Here’s one odd incident that happened last month: my soap got stolen. not once. not twice. thrice. The first two times, it returned with soap left in them. The third time the soap bottle was brand new, and it came back empty. I was not amused.
The thing is I would have lent it to the person if he asked nicely. Stealing soap seems like a really desperate and lowly measure. Why would someone do such a thing? After all, I paid for it, and I own that soap.
As I was dwelling in my foul mood with my new bottle of soap, it struck me that I am incredibly ridiculous, not only because it is just soap, but also because if you think about it, we humans don’t own anything on this planet. Sure, we paid the money to the grocery store. Sure, the store paid the manufacturers. Sure, these manufacturers paid for the resources. But where do the resources come from? Do the coal miners ever pay the earth for mining it? Do we ever pay the earth for digging up gold? Do we ever pay the earth for pumping away the fossil fuel? At unsustainable rates? Has the earth ever asked for anything in return?
It was then that I realized that our concept of possession is extremely misguided and fallacious. We never ‘own’ anything. We simply use them, mostly without acknowledging our footprints. Perhaps it is time.