I’ll be honest. I don’t really know what living the simple life means.
Not if by simple you mean easy. Or comfortable.
But I do understand living simply. It is, after all, what we left our previous lives in Oregon to pursue. A life that is rooted in the fundamental things like good food, hard work and satisfying relationships.
These are the building blocks of a good life. Everything else is…unnecessary.
Hear me out. I’m not saying that I don’t like nice things, a steady paycheck or the roof over my head. Some may argue that a few of those things are pretty fundamental to living as well, and I would agree by saying that all three of those are the fruit of hard work.
But what I’m talking about is something deeper than our physical needs or desires.
I’m talking about feeding the soul.
Living simply may sound ordinary. After all, a day filled with feeding the animals, washing the dishes, reading bedtime stories, prepping meals and working the soil may not seem glamourous. I’m perfectly okay with that.
For me, it’s about attaining contentment. Stripping everything else away until you get down to the raw truth of life. The authentic things. The naked bone.
We fill our lives with so much stuff with the hope that it will satisfy something deep within us. Have we not been conditioned by society to consume? But the more we consume the more dissatisfied we feel.
Living simply is the answer, but not easily achieved.
The things that stand in our way are the hardest to let go. Comfort. Easy access. Material things, yes…but those material things are only there because they feed something deeper in us. And we become slaves to them, either financially, mentally or emotionally bound to them. I need them. I can’t live without them. I deserve them.
Never before in the history of this country has a generation been so comfortable.
But what happens when we get too comfortable?
We stop growing. We no longer strive for something better. We stop becoming.
That’s where the soul dies.
There’s something terribly superficial about the way our culture demands we live our lives. We’ve lost connection with our food, our communities and our purpose in even being here in the first place. We’ve lost connection with what it really means to be human.
But can a life of washing dishes and growing tomatoes be the answer?
Yes, my dear friend. The answer is yes.
I want to be rooted in the things that matter. In the things that have long term ramifications. Character. Integrity. Courage. Faith. These things are not earned cheaply. They are not mass produced. They are cultivated through a life of purpose and discipline.
Through the ordinary things.
What a beautiful idea.