By Yay Padua-Olmedo

We’ve often talked of millennials as narcissists and center-of-the-universe beings, concerned primarily with self-gratification―this leaning to constantly project themselves as a-OK and on top of the world, especially among their peers.

selfie-254995_1280Their selfie photos, foodie adventures, love-love fashion brands, must-have gadgets―these they’ve nonchalantly bandied about on Facebook, their tweets and blogs.

Guess who’s caught on? With a few exceptions, almost all of us―yes, even baby boomers―have joined the bandwagon. Age gaps have been blurred. Those in my generation oftentimes find ourselves pitching FB images which we were embarrassed to crow about during our time, like one’s new mani-pedi, up-do or vroom-vroom, or the ooh la la (read: branded) presents received on a recent birthday.

Parents shower their children with too much praise, to the delight of FB friends returning the applause many times over. Lolos and lolas (I’m one of them. Mea culpa!) call everyone’s attention to their grandkids’ cuteness and smartness. Uh-oh! We need to heed psychologists’ warning. Heaping too much praise on kids contribute to self-centeredness. Uber-narcissists in the making? Oh no!

Hollywood, mass media and the internet have craftily and subliminally motivated us with viral and graphic images of pleasure: Traveling far and wide. Dining like there’s no tomorrow. Keeping one’s youth. Enthroning Kim Kardashian and company. Proclaiming Caitlin, aka Bruce, Jenner, a hero.

Live la vida loca. Indulge in tactile pleasures. Life is short. And while you’re at it, make sure it’s on Facebok, Twitter or your blog. How these messages have resonated!

This excessive affirmation of one’s goodness and physical attributes as well as this need to gratify our pleasure points―have they led our generation to believe that everything is permissible? “If it feels good, do it!”

What does the bible say about these?

1 John 2:16―For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

1 Peter 2:11― Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul…

That we can enjoy life and its blessings is a gift. We’ve been created with emotions and physical senses. But to crave for and be in love with things and carnal experiences (which are here today and gone tomorrow)―or desire to gain approval or applause by men, rather than God―is vanity, a chasing after the wind.

Lest we forget, we too are spiritual beings; and must be led more by the Holy Spirit, whose fruit in us manifests through self-control―along with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness and gentleness (Galatians 5:22-23).