Materialistic. It’s funny that we have a word for “wanting to buy material things.” It’s such an epidemic that it has become a personality trait. And yet, it seems more appropriate when applied to a society as a whole – especially our society. From this perspective, even those of us who do not seem very materialistic here and now, may be considered so in a different time and place. The problem with materialism is that there is a hefty cost: there are consequences both to the people who fall under its spell, and to our society as a whole.