Any ideas on what I can write for an essay on how emotions and relationships can be as valid as material reality?
I think that there might be a couple of items upon which to reflect as you compose this essay. One might be to focus on how valuable emotional attachments can be to an individual. For example, consider someone who lost a loved one during the terrorist attacks of September 11. I am confident that many of them would sacrifice all of their wealth and possessions in order to have one more conversation with a loved one who was lost on that day. We hear of many stories of those who lost a loved one calling the deceased's cell phone just to hear their voice on a message. This might be one example to demonstrate how emotions and relationships are just as valid as material reality.
Another instance would be the idea that individuals can feel love as a part of their own lives, a realm that material reality cannot touch. Being able to explore this on a personal or anecdotal level might be one of the best approaches here. There are people in both real life and in literature who would willingly sacrifice anything and everything for someone they love. Think about individuals who enjoy a lifetime connection with they think is their "soulmate." While it cannot be proven, it is as real to them as anything else, and one that supersedes material reality.