It is often times easy to agree with sentiment… but it is the elements of complication, clutteredness, and functional systems of our culture that cloud the path towards living the values we may feel sentimental about.
The “good life” that defines the “American Dream” is practically lived out by how full, busy and complicated we can make our lives. Look around and you will see that many people do not live simple lives. Many are hoping to add one more thing to fill some void, only to find that everything that gets brought in to our lives brings the opportunity for more to go wrong.
It is an initation for more havoc.
Keeping life simple requires intention, and is not necessarily easy. We like the thought… we also like choice. Freedom does not come in having more… or doing more. Rather freedome is keeping the first things… first. Storing up treasures on earth puts us at risk of having to keep up with constantly protecting and replacing.
We don’t need all of the things or experiences that we think that we do. Life is simple when one thing matters most: intimacy.
Simplicity will create space for our lives to be open with another.
Simplicity honors what has been right in front of us all along.
Simplicity gives us the leisure to enjoy who and what is sharing the present moment without being tangled in the maintenance of things that can be taken away.
Simplicity invites us into the day-to-day pleasures that otherwise would simply be passed by.
There will come a time when we realize that we are unable to handle all of the things that accumulate, and we will be forced to let go of most all of it. We have to let go… and the sooner we become intentional about it in the now, the sooner we will be able to embrace all that each moment truly has. It prepares us for a time that will come, when we will need to let go of everything… except the love we carry in our hearts for another.
Begin with your speech: let go of words that only convey half-truths. Say what you mean… and mean what you say.
Identify areas of complication by intentionally choosing to let go of things you don’t really need.
Choose to limit your choices. Do you really need hundreds of television channels?
If someone truly is impressed with something that you have, that you do not need… give it away.
“If you can’t take time to do nothing… you are a slave to doing. Doing nothing is a radical, revoluationary act. It frees you from the universal slavery of our age; slavery to the clock. The clock measures doing but not being.”
For more resources: visit Becoming Minimalist