Needs vs. Wants

— Aaron

I’ve been thinking a lot about the things that fall into the categories of Need and Want. I’ve come to the ultimate conclusion that everything is a want, sort of. Every need there can be is conditional. They are only necessary, if you want to accomplish something else. For instance (and these are absurdly extreme cases), I only need to eat food if I want to survive; I only need to breathe if I want to not pass out.

I’m not saying that all wants are invalid, though. Wanting to survive – valid. Wanting to help people – very valid. Wanting to avoid bodily harm – for the most part, valid. There are a lot of valid wants. Which means, then there are a lot of valid conditional needs. Like the need to have professional business attire, if you want to keep your professional business career (which could be a valid want).

We live in a culture that completely confuses needs and wants to the extant that people claim to “need” a latte. Or to “need” a new cell phone. If those were real needs, humanity wouldn’t have survived this long without them. Am I wrong?