Focussing on what is important in life
| Have you ever heard of the philosophy of Minimalism? Minimalism in the art and music world has been around for a long time. You surely encountered the system if you studied art in college. Minimalism involves the paring down of any work or environment to its most simplistic lines; the simpler things are the better and more pleasing they are. As the philosophy of minimalism concerns our daily living, it deals with the process of decluttering our living spaces and thinking processes of that which is completely superfluous. Minimalism is not some hippie fad thought up by millennials to divert them from their perpetual boredom. Minimalism should be viewed as a natural state of mind, body, and space. It is a condition most natural to man and the nature that surrounds him.
Would it be safe to say that our lives are most often cluttered with things we do not need? We could take a casual look into our own closets and probably agree that they have become storage cloakrooms for clothes we never wear and will never wear. There may be more pairs of shoes than anyone has a need to own, and that, of every stripe. Throughout our homes, nick-nacks and brick-a-brack abound. Our kitchen cabinets pose the potential of avalanche from the plastic cups and containers collected from fast-food forays. Our carports possess that lasting misnomer as any car that would have been in residence there has replaced with the overflow flotsam of past years.
In the most matter of fact sense, we are a society with more stuff than there is space to put it. Families throughout the world live their entire lives with a fifth of the amount which we possess, and even less. You may say that our abundance is the blessing of God. Think again. It may be His curse on a greedy, mindless, and obsessive culture which places more value on things than it does on people and the contents of life that matter most. And then, besides having so many needless things, we seem to find it almost impossible to rid ourselves of them. This is so much so that a booming business has emerged to cubby what we no longer can. Storage facilities spring up continuously to relieve our panic from the realization that there is no more room at home. Our obsession has become their possession – of our money.
But think of how we could simplify our lives if we had less stuff to encumber them. There is, indeed, a sense of freedom in the very thought. From the moment we gain our emancipation from the slavery to things, we realize there is more time and energy to attend to those areas of life that mean the most to us: our family, friends and whatever brings us true happiness.
If we have the courage to take a hard look at our life, we should ask ourselves what we are living for. Has our life come down to the check we get from fighting the morning traffic in order that we might afford our home, two cars, the newest technology and the trending fashions? Is that living? We already know the answer.
So, let’s take a look around and appraise our personal sphere of living. What can we make better? Who can we be more loving or friendly to? What can we change that makes a difference? Here’s an idea: let’s change us and our perspective. Life is short. Let’s start living for the things that matter, and not for those things that don’t.