Monday, July 7, 2008

Contentment

I wrote this a few years back and came across it this weekend. Thought I'd share.

One-person’s opinion: An essay to myself

No one ever drifted towards holiness…or financial peace…I’m pretty sure no one ever drifted towards contentment or a happy marriage either. All of the above require action to achieve and maintain.

Today I choose to celebrate what we have and not what we’ve lost. I choose to overcome my frustration with lack of spending money and a nice house, and declare a high joy-to-stuff ratio. Conspicuous austerity, inconspicuous consumption, voluntary simplicity…these are the new banners under which I live. Consider this thought:

“Our society is more troubled by problems of overabundance. We are three times richer than in the 1950s, and diseases particular to ‘affluenza’ clog our social and individual arteries. We are more overworked, more stressed, more depressed and much fatter. ...
Critiques of affluenza go deeper than puritanical dismay at the aggressive vulgarity of materialism. The centrepiece of the argument is that we are obsessed privately with more income and better goods, and collectively with "growth" and "progress". Yet all the scholarly work on well-being shows that after passing a benchmark of real deprivation, greater prosperity does not lead to increased happiness.”—Anne Manne, "Sell Your Soul And Spend, Spend, Spend," Syndey Morning Herald, April 14, 2003

Surely in our unusual, unordinary journey as a family we have learned one thing at least, and that is that we can live on very little and still live a rich and beautiful life. Here’s to prosperity in the future, and a deep, deep contentment in the present.

Cari/Mom

1 comment:

Extreme Gardener said...

The very best thing about this blog business is getting to know what's inside my sister's head and heart. Thanks for sharing such a beautiful piece of you!