Posts Tagged ‘possessions’

The Beauty of Simplicity

April 28, 2014
This is not my room, but I could be quite happy if it was

This is not my room, but I could be quite happy if it was


I love living simply. I have no car, no phone (I use Skype on my laptop) and no possessions of any value other than my laptop. I’ve learned that whatever you own that you cannot bear to part with, owns you. Every item you own is a hungry beast demanding some portion of your time, attention and psychic energy.


Have nothing in your houses which you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.
William Morris

I don’t want anything or any things to distract me from living the life I want to live. I don’t want one hour of one day to go by without learning something, deepening a relationship, doing satisfying work or just enjoying a good laugh.

That’s why I greatly appreciated this article in the March 1994 issue of Guideposts magazine that highlights the simple lifestyles of three extraordinary people.



THE JOY OF DOING WITHOUT
by Elizabeth Sherrill

Forty days without chocolate…. When I was a high school student, this constituted my view of Lent. Why it was good to go without something for seven weeks I didn’t know; it was what my friends did, so I did too. But as time passed, I began encountering people who voluntarily gave something up, not merely as a Lenten custom, but because of what lay behind this tradition. One of those people was Margaret Henrichsen.

A Methodist minister, Margaret was a modern-day (more…)

Riches Roll Like the Wheels of a Chariot

April 7, 2011




Whatever you own that you cannot bear to part with, owns you. As soon as you vow never to lose it, you have lost yourself in it.

He who obtains has little. He who scatters has much.
Lao Tzu




Ultimately, your most prized possessions will (more…)

Hidden Histories

February 3, 2011

A few days before I left Minnesota for California late last year, I was lying in bed in the basement of my mom’s house, the house we moved to when I was thirteen. I was looking at the photos and miscellaneous itms that adorned the walls, thinking that at some point in the future, another family would live in this house, with photos and mementoes of their own, and that absolutely everything in this house would one day be replaced by another family’s possessions, just as we replaced the family that lived here before us. The new family will know nothing of our family, of the years we spent in this house, or that we even existed. Just as the people living in the house where I grew up in a St. Paul suburb know nothing of our lives, and care not that my parents built the house they now call home.

I’m not the only one to have such thoughts. In her new book, Bird Cloud,  Annie (more…)

Lord, Why Did You Give Me This Bother?

January 12, 2011

This is not my room, but I could be quite happy if it was

I like living simply, keeping my possessions to a minimum and traveling light. This makes me hard to shop for. My family members know better than to give me little knick-knacks or decorations or even functional gifts that normal people use and enjoy. The way I look at it, the more possessions you have, the more they end up possessing you.

I also shy away from luxurious items because they virtually scream to be kept in pristine shape. I am not exceedingly careful with such things, much to the dismay of various women in my life over the years.

So I especially enjoyed Paramahansa Yogananda’s take on the matter in the book Where There Is Light:

I appreciate whatever God gives me, but I don’t miss it when it is gone. Someone once gave me a beautiful (more…)