Borgmann also contends that philosophy has, often in the past, taken people "out of the world" of things by stressing contemplation (via contemplativa) over activity (via activa). In philosophy today, however, there is a shift away from this contemplative nature of philosophy to a more active way (the way of practices, see for example, Philosophy as a Way of Life: Spiritual Exercises from Socrates to Foucault by Pierre Hadot). This shift is requiring theologians, philosophers and thinkers to deal more with the nature of things, or as it is often called: the material world. Sadly, Borgmann argues that advertisers (see Mad Men: Season One) do a far better job at shaping the imaginations of people concerning material things/possessions than do philosophers (and Theologians). So if we are searching for the good life, then we need to be able to theorize about the material world in a powerful and imaginative way. We must realize that the material world matters; it is not devoid of meaning or ethical value.
"Most people, when prompted, would agree with mainstream philosophers that the right ethical theory will guide us to the good life and that the crucial moral problem is to discover which theory is correct. But that is half right at best. The factor that most decisively channels the daily course of life is not moral theory but material culture." -Power Failure: Chrstianity in the Culture of Technology p. 24 (Emphasis Mine)
We use "material" things as a way to separate us from others, to create a class system of sorts, to possess things we once made (music was made in the home, now it is just consumed), and as a way to make life easier. In the last case we find that we often lose cultural memory and tradition (for example: gardening, cooking, and simple home economics, elements passed down from generations, are all but forgotten in our modern material world) because we now have easier technological options for daily "problems." In short, I think Borgmann is right! An ethical theory MUST account for the material world if we are ever going to achieve the good life.