Monday, April 26, 2010

Monday's Mason

Bear with me, this is a long one!  I thought it well worth all the typing!

Vol. 4, Chapter XVII
"Bargains. - There is another failure in integrity which people do not realise to be as debasing as debt, though probably its effects are as bad; and that is the bargain-hunting in which even right-minded persons allow themselves.
     It arises from an error in thought.  People set out with the idea that they must get the best that is to be had at the lowest possible price; and out of this idea arise the unseemly scramble to be seen at 'Sales'; the waste of time, temper, and health in going from shop to shop in search of the 'cheapest and best' article; the dishonest waste of the time of the assistants in all these shops - a waste for which, of course, the customers pay in the end:  and to these is often added the fretful disappointment of a 'Purple Jar'; a fine and showy thing is brought home which fails to bear the tests of examination and calm judgement.  The whole thing might be set right, and the ways of trade mended, by the exercise of clear judgement informed by integrity of purpose.
     What we want is - not the best thing that can be had at the lowest possible price - but a thing suitable for our purpose, at a price which we can afford to pay and know to be just.  (Italics added)
      Looked at from this pint of view, the whole matter is simplified; we are no longer perpetually running round, harassing ourselves and wearing out other people in search after bargains.  Every purchase becomes a simple, straightforward duty.  We feel it to be a matter of integrity to deal with tradesmen of our own neighborhood, so far as they can supply us.  If they fail to do so, we are at liberty to go further afield; but in this case, we soon fix upon  the distant tradesman who can supply our needs, and escape the snare of bargain-hunting.
      There is a further risk in bargain-hunting in which we should be aware.  Nothing is cheap that we do not want; and the temptation to buy a thing for which no need has yet arisen, because it is a bargain, leads to a waste of money wanted for other uses, and to the accumulation of meaningless objects in our rooms.  It is worth while to remember that space is the most precious and also the most pleasing thing in a house or room; and that even a small room becomes spacious if it is not crowded with useless objects."


Shannon said...

That's a good philosophy. I hate wasting time. We just finished reading "It's all too much", a book about clutter and what it does to our lives. I thought I didn't have much clutter, but I was wrong. Anyway, recently I saw an ice shaving machine on sale and I wanted to buy it. But with my new mindset, I realized that the cost to my peace because of more clutter was not worth the savings on an item I will probably never use anyway.

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