Discovering what life is about

Simple Living Network: conscious, simple, healthy and restorative living

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Simple living is not about living in poverty or self-inflicted deprivation. Rather, it is about living an examined life — one in which you have determined what is important, or “enough,” for you, discarding the rest.

… and I think this is exactly the point. What is important to many people is

A house with several bedrooms and bathrooms.
One of more fully loaded full-size cars.
A college degree with some pedigree.
Demonstrating success (dressing well, going out, buying things).

These things can be very expensive. Here’s what is important to me

Financial independence (roughly the same cost as a (pre-bubble) middle class house in whatever area you live in).
Being sufficiently strong to routinely walk 8 miles, cycle for hours, scale an 8 feet wall, and basically being physically capable.
Being widely read, and basically intellectually competent. I hold the renaissance ideal that one “should try to embrace all knowledge and develop their own capacities as fully as possible” in high regard.

So maybe we live in material squalor(*), but on the other hand I can not really imagine only knowing what I’ve been trained (educated) to do and having to show up for work every day to afford all my possessions. That would be squalor in my value system that favors independence and competence.

(*) Our living like students would be a fair assessment. However, we have lived like students for quite a while now. And instead of buying cheap stuff and replacing it when it breaks every couple of years like students do when they can’t afford quality, we have eventually gathered a collection of nice stuff.

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Categories : Life purpose    Themes : frugal living Financial Independence
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