Products are specially designed to catch the eye and captivate the mind. Because we focus on what else there is to acquire, rather than what we already have, we fall into the endless upgrade game. “The functions you need are coming in the next version! The new design is so much more attractive! And it comes in your favorite color!” These products may be mass-produced, but they are custom-made to suit our greed and grasping. They are exactly tailored to deceive us with their appearances.
As I see it, however, the bigger problem is the gullibility of our mind. This is what really leaves us vulnerable to the deceptive allure of things. In other words, we ourselves are the bigger problem. Sometimes we are like small children; when it comes to assessing our own needs, we often show no sign of maturity. Just think about it: When a little child cries, the easy way to stop him is to give him a toy. We dangle it in front of him and wave it around to catch his attention until he reaches out to grab it. When we finally hand over the toy, he quiets down. Our goal was just to stop his crying. We did not try to address the child’s underlying needs. We gave him something else to desire, and tricked him into falling silent for the time being.
From The Heart Is Noble: Changing the World from the Inside Out by H.H. the Seventeenth Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, page 60