We covered what it once was to live the Simple Life. Now let’s explore man in this current age.
The question comes down to this:
Can man truly achieve a simple lifestyle in these demanding, modern times?
Many people today think so. Many people have tried. Those who do live the simple lifestyle, such as the old Amish and Mennonite groups, have had a hard time keeping their lives simple. Technology has crept into their midst one way or another. Mixers and laundry machines are now run by electricity, even if not connected to the grid at large. Stores are now modernized to be online at the expense of the quality of their wares, many of which are now made in China. Even the production of kerosene lanterns is no longer done by hand, but parts and pieces shipped from overseas plants to meet customer demand.
So is simplicity a realistic goal?
The long and short of it is summed up in one word: Maybe.
The reality is that in order to achieve that goal, it isn’t as simple as many would like to believe. It’s achievable, but not without a great deal of effort, resistance, and organization. And to live simply can actually become more stressful for those trying to live a simple life in the midst of a modern world – especially if their type of work depends upon electricity and computers. (And I challenge you to try to name one job today that isn’t touched by one or the other!)
It isn’t the purpose of this article to stir up animosity among the simple life advocates. Those who have achieved this level of Nirvana have to be commended and admired for their accomplishments. But they hold the minority.
The majority has become too dependent upon modern technology to be able to give it up without a great deal of difficulty. Some could not physically or even psychologically survive without it.
So what does it really mean to live a “simple life”?
Living a simple life means to live simply inside the context of one’s Faith. It means that one must live purely, in tune with nature, the seasons, and the foods which are most perfectly fitted to his physical makeup. Simple living consists of starting out each day with God, then living each moment of life as a prayer.
It means that one needs to take time to stop and smell the flowers. A person needs to work in the garden and feel the dirt between his fingers. He needs to sit still and listen to the sounds of nature – the birds, a running brook, the crashing of thunder. The he must set aside quite time each morning and each evening to be alone with his Creator.
No TV, no distractions, no books, no telephones. no computers.
To live a simple life is, in reality…well…simple.
But the practical application sometimes gets lost in the fog of a busy day.
The question we will cover next week is…
How can we strive to incorporate more simplicity in one’s life, adding and subtracting those things that can interact with that journey? We will continue the journey in Part 3 of this topic…