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Below are 20 journal entries, after skipping by the 20 most recent ones recorded in 'Nuffism: the philosophy of having enough's LiveJournal:

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Monday, May 28th, 2007
7:41 am
Inspired by Walden
After reading Henry D. Thoreau, specifically Walden and Civil Disobedience I decided to make some changes and start living in sync with nature. That being said, I don't care about material things, as long as my car drives - I don't need a new one, I try to preserve my clothes, don't buy any unless necessary and try to live simple. I gave up living in the city for a quiter neigborhood near trails so I can walk during the week and on the weekends, it's very nice.
Friday, May 4th, 2007
11:45 am
What's up with everyone?
This is the longest gap I've seen, so far, of anyone posting on this community site. I'm wondering what's going on with people's lives to account for it. This year promises to be a real bender, from the way it's shaping up.

Any observations on that?
Monday, February 12th, 2007
12:55 pm
going vegan
i finally decided that if i say i want to live an earth sustainable lifestyle, there really is no alternative to a vegan diet.  it was a long time coming but i'm glad i made the choice at a point in my life where i could attach personal responsibility to it.

any other vegans here?

Current Mood: chipper
Monday, January 29th, 2007
3:02 pm
Okay, since the Peace Pilgrim is one of the community's interests I am assuming that a few of you have heard of her.

I am interested in doing a Peace Walk from the Alantic to the Pacific, but I don't want to go alone. I'm looking for a group of 2-20 or so people who would want to do it with me. Does anyone know of any plannings of a Peace Walk coming up?
Sunday, January 7th, 2007
6:22 pm
working on it
I joined this group awhile ago at the beginning of my "nuffism" journey.  I've heard from a lot of people and sources that living simply is a long process, and it's best when it is gradual.  I have tried to follow that advice and I think I have made some positive changes in my life.  I try to use reusable shopping bags for groceries when possible, buy more foods locally, use more earth friendly cleaning products, etc.  It has been awhile since anyone has posted, so I was wondering if anyone has some good tips for more ways to reduce consumption?
Tuesday, December 26th, 2006
3:51 am
'nuffism on the supply side
Well, it sure 'nough looks like the group has died out, in the Christmas rush of things! . . . the time when we should really be super-conscious of what this group is all about.

Could everyone be hiding in shame?

I'm only here, myself, to post a very interesting article originally from Forbes.com (though I got it from my trusty news magazine, The Week). Coming from Forbes, of course, their editorializing comments are half the fun of it. But seriously, it looks at a side of the 'nuffism program that we seldom give much thought to: getting enough of what counts, in the first place. Or getting enough of what WE TEND to count, as preliminary to how much we spend, for how much we collect.

I'll put the article under an LJ cut, so as to keep this space clear...Collapse )
Tuesday, October 24th, 2006
4:38 pm
The author of Affluenza is interviewed
Here is a site address for a series of four brief podcasts interviewing Jim de Graff (sp?), the author of Affluenza. Each segment is only about ten minutes long, and they are really worth listening to. Created just a couple weeks ago. http://www.thekindlings.com/page/2/

Drop down to the middle of the page that comes up, and they are easy to identify by their icon. The series runs from bottom to top.
Monday, October 16th, 2006
7:18 pm
Alternative to the greedy freecycle?


Welcome to Gigoit!

Individuals and organizations are regularly faced with the problem of deciding what to do with items that still may be useful but that they no longer want. They can also find themselves suddenly in need of an item without being financially capable of purchasing it. Gigoit, Inc. is a nonprofit organization founded in Saint Louis, Missouri. We are currently developing a free public web space for individuals and corporations to donate and receive unwanted items within their neighborhoods. This keeps useful products out of landfills and fosters community involvement.
Thursday, October 5th, 2006
10:26 pm
Learning sustainability...
X-posted from my own LJ, daharja:

Enlightenment - well, sort of.

This year started as The Year Of The Cull. We were going to empty the junk from our house, do a bit of painting and prissy the place up for sale, and buy a few nicer bits of furniture. Oh, and turn the garden beds from weed beds into garden beds once more.

That was the plan. The Plan[TM].

Of course, nothing turns out quite the way you expect. And what I didn't expect was that actually digging in and confront all the piles of CRAP I've amassed over the years would make me see my world in a totally new light.

I suppose I could call the CRAP 'belongings', or 'personal effects', or somesuch nonsense. But the truth is, when you shove it all into piles and actually sit down and stare at it, it loses it's importance. The sheer effort of having to deal with it, shelf after shelf, drawer after drawer, forces you to realise that your real needs are actually quite small, and all the rest of it is little more than a type of household fungus that seems to hang on to you for grim death, no matter how much 'clutter culling' and 'charity donating' you try to do.

I'm not actually a clutter bug. No, really I'm not. I look at my friends houses, and they all have far more junk than me - well, most of them do. And they have bigger homes to spread it around in as well. But that doesn't let me off the hook, and this whole issue isn't a comparison gig anyway. It's about me - the spotlight is squarely on ME.

I'm not a clutter bug, but somewhere along the line I managed to buy:
  • over ten pairs of shoes,
  • well over 200 books,
  • over 50 CDs,
  • over 80 DVDs and videos,
  • 6 pairs of jeans,
  • 8 black tank tops - all identical
  • 31 tops - shirts, t-shirts, tops and jackets (yes, really!), but I only wear about 10 of them with any sort of regularity
  • 6 pairs of black capri pants - all virtually identical (only their mother can tell them apart? *lol*)
  • 12 different types of moisturisers and face gooks
  • 6 lipsticks - all virtually the same colour
  • 18 pairs of undies - do I really need that many?

The list goes on. At lest, that was the list. It's now siginficantly reduced, with a lot of it sold and/or gone to charities.

I had so much stuff that I didn't even know what I had. But the scary thing, as I have gone through it all this year, has been realising how many thousands of dollars I have wasted on all this junk.

You see, at some point in my life, every one of these items MUST have been deemed 'necessary' to me, for me to have bought it.
Every one of these items was paid for in cold hard cash (or Visa - don't leave home without it!)
Every one of these items I 'just had to have'.

Or did I? Did I even know why I bought all this junk?
Was it for the thrill of the chase?
For the joy of the hunt (I used to love shopping, and still get a buzz from it on the rare ocassional these days when my wallet opens and the moths get a chance to spread their wings).
Did I just buy it for 'something to do'?

I bought CRAP because I thought it would make me happier. And during the hunt for the 'perfect' item, it almost would - for a moment. If I wasn't shopping or eating, I was thinking about shopping or eating. Whichever way you look at it, I was burying my boredom and the blah-ness of my life under a big pile of CRAP.

Which brings us to 2006

And here I am, three-quarters of the way through the year, confronted with a life that is fulfilling (albeit exhausting!), a weight problem that is no longer a weight problem because I've finally dealt with the reality that eating doesn't solve problems (sounds simple, doesn't it? But it's been really hard for me to get to this point), and a big pile of fungusey-clingy, CRAP that is taking a long time to disperse from my life.

Confronting the CRAP has made me realise that buying things never did make me happy. What would have made me happy would have been paying off the mortgage a damn sight faster than we have been doing, which we could have done had I not been buying so much CRAP.

I suppose I should consider myself a moderate CRAP collector - at least I never threw myself into debt. We have never had credit card problems, have always paid the balance on time, and have managed to get significantly ahead on our substantial mortgage. But that doesn't mean I shouldn't learn from my faults.

Staring at the past

It actually really helps, and is therapeutic, to shove everything we don't need anymore into a big pile and to look at it. To just look at it. In a way, it's accepting what I have done. It's owning up to my own foolishness. Owning up to the person I wanted to be and never was, and to the person that I actually became - a junk collector who spent way too much money trying to live someone else's dream.

The Year Of The Cull has taught me to value myself, my body, my time and my money. I'm still learning, and still making mistakes, but I'm improving.

Most importantly, I'm learning that it's all very well to talk of being vegan, or reducing water use, or cutting back on car use, or whatever. But if you're buying more stuff every week and your home is bursting at the seams with belongings like mine was, then maybe sustainability really needs to start with a Year Of The Cull and a big pile of CRAP in your shed to donate to more far more needy crap-collectors than you out there.

Just a bit of food for thought.
Tuesday, September 12th, 2006
8:00 am
Industrial Society Destroys Mind and Environment
The link between Mind and Social / Environmental-Issues.

The fast-paced, consumerist lifestyle of Industrial Society is causing exponential rise in psychological problems besides destroying the environment. All issues are interlinked. Our Minds cannot be peaceful when attention-spans are down to nanoseconds, microseconds and milliseconds. Our Minds cannot be peaceful if we destroy Nature.

Industrial Society Destroys Mind and Environment

Subject : In a fast society slow emotions become extinct.
Subject : A thinking mind cannot feel.
Subject : Scientific/ Industrial/ Financial thinking destroys the planet.
Subject : Environment can never be saved as long as cities exist.

Emotion is what we experience during gaps in our thinking.

If there are no gaps there is no emotion.

Today people are thinking all the time and are mistaking thought (words/ language) for emotion.

When society switches-over from physical work (agriculture) to mental work (scientific/ industrial/ financial/ fast visuals/ fast words ) the speed of thinking keeps on accelerating and the gaps between thinking go on decreasing.

There comes a time when there are almost no gaps.

People become incapable of experiencing/ tolerating gaps.

Emotion ends.

Man becomes machine.

A society that speeds up mentally experiences every mental slowing-down as Depression / Anxiety.

A ( travelling )society that speeds up physically experiences every physical slowing-down as Depression / Anxiety.

A society that entertains itself daily experiences every non-entertaining moment as Depression / Anxiety.





To read the complete article please follow either of these links :



Saturday, September 2nd, 2006
7:43 pm
Thoughts on Consumerism
I see a connection between consumerism, the cult of the individual vs a sense of community(I vs we), capitalism, and globalization.  These are things I think of as "Teh Evil"**.  I envision "Teh Good" to be pretty much the opposite.  Identifiable sense of culture that doesn't come from Walmart, people who not only know their neighbors, but interact with them and even (gasp) can depend on them in bad times, local communities, etc.  

How many of your day-to-day interactions are not in some way influenced or structured around participation in the consumer culture?  

My guess is NOT MANY.  

Where are the commons?  Where is the place that people hang out and play their guitars and paint landscapes and drink tea and play soccer and meet new people and interact with each other?  What are the things to do FOR FREE?  And how many people actually participate?

I'm trying to simplify my life and kill my consumerism.  And it isn't easy, because it's everywhere.  There are websites and books and whatnot that explain anticonsumerism from every possible angle.  Only you can't take a life that revolves around buying stuff, and then stop buying.  The behavior can't be eliminated, it has to be replaced.  

There's this whole psychology around consumerism.  It fills the void, gives your life meaning and validation, creates your sense of self.  These are things that really should be done by your belonging to, and participation in, a community.  Look at commercials.  What is really being sold to you?  Cleaning products that make your family happy, fast food that creates family togetherness.  Do you remember those Mentos commercials?  Where strangers helped eachother out of unusual situations *just because* and there was a sense of one-big-happy-family?  

So just take out that middleman of crappy product that you don't need.  Community needs to be brought back.  I am utterly clueless how to do that.  And really, it's not something *I* should be able to do.  At least not by myself.  It would by definition have to involve other people.  

{Insert provocative solution here}

(originally posted in my own journal)
Friday, August 18th, 2006
5:36 pm
Zipcar When You Can't Afford It.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zipcar * http://www.cioinsight.com/article2/0,1540,1913769,00.asp

"Home of a well-conceived, well-executed service for urban dwellers who need a set of wheels every now and then but prefer not to own one. The website makes it very easy to reserve a car, look at recent charges to your account, learn what's covered under the usage fees, and learn all that is expected of you as a member of this rapidly-expanding club. Now serving eight cities including New York, San Francisco, Providence, RI, Minneapolis/St. Paul and Toronto. Ready to go on a road trip?"

The best way to let them know your neighborhood is ready for Zipcar is to have your friends and neighbors
add their address to our "notify me page":


Occasional driving rate for San Franciso. and other rates.

http://www.epinions.com/content_210859560580 http://carpundit.typepad.com/carpundit/2005/04/zipcar_a_review.html

Thursday, August 10th, 2006
11:08 pm
Solace for the auto-immobile, haven for the self-propelled.
http://members.aol.com/Jakajk/bikeweb2.html :

"My father never owned an automobile because a vision impairment in his right eye prevented him from obtaining a driver's license. My mother never drove either. I grew up in a family without a car. This made the family a bit of a statistical anomaly in a country built around the automobile. My siblings did not learn to drive until they were well into their twenties. That's enough to make you an odd ball in America, but odder still is the fact that I, approaching the age of forty, still do not know how to drive.

Where I grew up, many teenagers seemed more concerned about obtaining a driver's license than they were about graduating from high school. The automobile industry would have us believe that not owning a car is practically a mortal sin. What is not even having a driver's license then? It is tantamount to never even having been baptisted, never having one's sins washed away with gasoline on the greasy banks of the petroleum river. One is forever forbidden from entering the heavenily state of acceleration, and condemned to walk along the litter filled shoulders of life's highways while everyone else roars off toward the smoldering grey horizon.

While all my siblings have married and succumbed to the two car family dream, I have yet to commit myself to spending two hours a day to commuting by hurtling down the highway neatly encased in steel while smogging up the atmosphere. Personally, I would hardly ever think about my lack of "automobility" if it were not for the fact that it raises so many eyebrows when it comes up in conversation. My students, in particular, seem to be absolutely astounded whenever I mention it. When I explain to them that I do not need a car because I ride a bike, the statement is met with much rolling of the eyes and a certain amount of snickering. Some even insinuate that I am too cheap to by a car. Hmm...true as that might be, there are other reasons as well.

Read more...Collapse )

- John Korber: One World One People @ http://members.aol.com/Jakajk/bikeweb2.html
Sunday, July 30th, 2006
10:45 am
Adventures in consumerland; an epic voyage
Cross-posted to brbrbrad

My wife has a birthday coming up, and as is customary here in Consumerland, USA ® I set out yesterday to buy her a gift.  In breaking with tradition, however, I decided to bring her along for the ride.

Cut for lengthCollapse )
Thursday, July 27th, 2006
11:59 pm
The 'other shoe' than consumerism
There is a whole other aspect of the 'having too much' syndrome, than the single one of consumerism that we have begun to understand for the pitfall it is. This other one is so much taken-for-granted that it almost never gets seriously looked at. But I took a shot at it in an offhand manner, today, responding to an email promotion I received from a certain Blake Moody, that I think is worth repeating here.

Moody's email promo - and it was a good one - was for a set of instructional CDs that were guaranteed to get one through the hurdles of becoming a successful author. It pulled all the stops, and probably pulled a great many would-be's into Moody's net. As I say, it was solid stuff. But I dashed off this short note to Mr. Moody in response:

Oh, it's probably a good shot. And I certainly wouldn't deny you your own ambition, Moody. But I'm a few years past where I'd bite on it. The only thing in this country more pernicious than consumerism – and this hasn't really been found out yet – is what I'd call 'get-aheadism'. Someday they'll be writing about it. I'm just about over my own case of it, and doing nicely, thanks, being a little frog in a very lush little puddle.

A good day to you...

Friday, July 21st, 2006
7:39 pm
Tiny Houses on CBS news
CBS article and video for those who missed this when it aired (as I did).

"People generally don’t think I’m crazy anymore. Whether I am or not, they generally don’t say so." Jay Shafer, founder, Tumbleweed Tiny House Company.

x-posted to _nuffism, after_b, anotherway, living_lightly, microliving, off_grid, peakoil_prep, and primitiveliving
Wednesday, July 19th, 2006
8:07 pm
I just ran across an interesting site or two, while trying to find out where I can get rid of things. The one I already knew about was at www.freecycle.org which is a worldwide organization devoted to personal recycling, with individual groups located in communities everywhere. Chances are that one is somewhere near you. The one in Seattle seems to be doing a thriving 'business', where everything is free.

But the new one I discovered is Freeganism. It's a kind of infant movement, so far, based in England. Find it at http://www.frappr.com/freegans
Sunday, June 25th, 2006
5:31 pm
Maxed Out
Have any of you seen this documentary yet?

Maxed Out

It's all about the credit industry, and I think it looks fascinating. I heard about it through my boyfriend, who is your average blue-collar citizen currently winning lawsuit settlements hand over fist against various credit companies for their illegal yet common collection practices. It looks like an interesting film.
Sunday, June 18th, 2006
3:44 pm
'Sassyfrau' did the group a marvelous favor by pointing us to the site called www.Whywork.org It is an essay and discussion site fully devoted to the topic of getting out of the jobforce, how it can be done, and all aspects pertaining thereto. And I feel, personally, like I have arrived home by going there. Anyone interested in that aspect of _nuffism should check it out.

It takes me back to my own roots, in this area of endeavor. I even went and located the opening shot to my new life, its foretaste in a freelance article that was published in issue #3 of The Mother Earth News. It's on the web, if you search for it. But let me just quote the opener to it, a true copy of the 'notice of retirement' that I actually submitted to the management of where I worked at that time...

Date: March 18, 1970
To: Personnel Dept.
Subject: Retirement

Four weeks from this date, on April 15, 1970, I shall be retiring, and this constitutes my four weeks notice in conformance with company standards for professionally classed employees. I realize that retirement is an odd term to use at my age, but it is the only one that can validly be applied. The circumstances of my life are such that I need only work half the year for my physical support, and rather than spend or hoard the excess for 25 years, which is the usual custom, I would rather take my retirement in easy stages while I am still young enough to make good use of it. It is really sad that the only work choice open to people is that of the 40-hour/50-week year, or none at all. There are so many reasonable combinations which might be put together that each of us could live his life in a human, rewarding fashion if the alternatives were actually available. Instead, in an economy that brags about its affluence and leisure, we are working at the same mad pace that was required in far more austere periods of our history. This is something which exists because each and all of us permit it to exist, as though we do not run our own lives or our own business functions. A business is no more than a collection of individuals, and when they decide to control their own destiny, they shall. Fortunately, there are still personal alternatives available, and this is mine - periodic retirement.

Most Sincerely,
Irv Thomas
Wednesday, June 14th, 2006
5:38 pm
in search of an essay
A couple of years ago I read an essay about not working, and now I can't find it. It wasn't "The Abolition of Work" by Bill Black, it was something more recent. It might have been written by an author going by the name of Red Wolf, but Google isn't coming up with anything. Does anyone know what I'm talking about?
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