Compulsive hoarding (or pathological collecting) is a pattern of behavior that is characterized by the excessive acquisition of and inability or unwillingness to discard large quantities of objects that cover the living areas of the home and cause significant distress or impairment. Compulsive hoarding behavior has been associated with health risks, impaired functioning, economic burden, and adverse effects on friends and family members. When clinically significant enough to impair functioning, hoarding can prevent typical uses of space so as to limit activities such as cooking, cleaning, moving through the house, and sleeping. It can also be dangerous if it puts the individual or others at risk for fire, falling, poor sanitation, and other health concerns.Hoarding becomes obvious when that which is hoarded is things, hereafter referred to as stuff. However, stuff is not the only thing that can be hoarded, and hoarding of stuff may not be the only type of hoarding that is a mental disorder. My thoughts after the GOS (Great Orange Squiggle)
I have watched the hoarding shows on TV with a certain level of fascination. Since the hoarding and cleanup are both sources of great suffering, I have wondered at myself and this fascination. I think I finally figured it out.
Hoarding impairment is not limited to stuff, and it is a symptom of something very deep. It is evidence of putting something above oneself, and, as such, in the position of a god. When that which is hoarded is stuff, it is obvious that hoarding is occurring and that it is unhealthy. But there is another, more insidious type of hoarding going on. We have seen diaries talking about the hoarding of money, but have we really looked at what that means?
Let us take a look at the 1%. Not the Warren Buffets or other 1%ers who are able to give from their prosperity and who are not on a constant search of ways to increase their wealth regardless of who it hurts. Rather, the Koch Brothers and their ilk, who find that they can never get enough, even when it hurts others.
Many of this type of hoarder considers itself to be deeply religious. But we see in the Ten Commandments:"You shall not make for yourself a graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth." We can read "graven image" to mean something man made that you worship or bow down to. Hoarders are worshiping man made things called stuff. The financial system - money - is man made. Financial hoarders are worshipping it. They are bowing down to it. However, in order to keep their idolatry from interfering with their religious beliefs, they are linking their idol to God. In that way, they can claim to worship their God and continue to worship their money.
Financial hoarders are, as far as I can assess, as mentally disturbed as stuff hoarders. However, their dis-ease is more insidious. Stuff hoarders make the lives of those who live within the boundaries of their hoard miserable. The borders of the financial hoarder extend far beyond one home. It is easy to see the mess caused by the stuff hoarder. But the mess caused by the financial hoarder is harder to put on display because financial hoarding is not visible. It is bits in a bank computer (or many bank computers). At least the stuff hoarder can touch and see his god. The financial hoarder can only see a symbol in the form of an amount in bank statements. The stuff hoarder makes those who live with him miserable, both in the form of a crowded and unlivable home and in the things they have to do without because of the cost of procuring and storing the hoard. Financial hoarders, in their attempts to acquire more, push Michigan's Right to Work legislation so they can suck more of their god out of the hands of their workers and increasingly pull the balance of power to their side. They push legislation against health care so they can suck even more profits from those who generate their wealth - the workers. Financial hoarders fight against paying taxes so they can acquire more wealth as they worship that graven image which is money. To me, there is nothing sadder than worshiping something man-created that you can't even see - you can't touch it, you can't hold it, you can't admire it.
Corporations are man-made things (not individuals, sorry). Their CEOs are now treating their corporations as gods whose sacrifice is money. And they are hoarding the money in their worship of the corporation - sitting on that wealth rather than recirculating it to the benefit of the society they exist in. So we have a man made thing receiving offerings of man made thing and these offerings are generated on the backs of God made workers. It makes no sense in a spiritual sense, or in a community sense.
Now I get to guns and the extreme second amendment people (those who would protect any weapons including assault rifles and large magazines). We have these same people clawing to keep these man made pieces of steel to the detriment of those who would be harmed by them. Again, they have linked their guns to their God in order to be able to feel righteous in their worship. They are very vocal about their piety. And yet, they violate the first and second commandments given them by their God - Thou shalt have no other Gods before me and Thou shall not make unto yourselves any graven image.