Monday, August 15, 2011

From ‘Simplify your Life’ by Elaine St James

Let your boat of life be light, packed with only what you need – a homely home and simple pleasures, one or two friends worth the name, someone to love and someone to love you, a cat, a dog, and a pipe or two, enough to eat and enough to wear, and a little more than enough to drink, for thirst is a dangerous thing

- Jerome Klapka Jerome

Wise men and women in every major culture throughout history have found that the secret to happiness is not in getting more but in wanting less.

How has it happened that the size of the average American home has gone from the roughly 900-square-foot, two-bedroom, one-bath home of the 1950s to a roughly 2000-square-foot home with three bedrooms, three and a half baths, an eat-in kitchen, a dining room, a library, an exercise room, a “great” room, a TV room, at least a two-but often a three-car garage, and an entry hall that rivals the size of the Sistine Chapel? It certainly did not happen because of the need to house larger families; in the past fifty years the average family size has gone from 4 to 2.5.

Studies have shown that in the typical American household the TV is on approximately seven hours per day. ………

Think about whether the lives portrayed on your favorite sitcom contribute anything positive to your life, or whether repeated exposure to crime and violence contributes to your peace of mind. Think about whether the “thirty-second sound bite” format of most television news gives you any real information. Think about whether the addictive habit of watching television contributes to your aliveness, spontaneity, and sense of freedom.

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