Chronicles of Simplicity (6/6): Minimalism is not a loss

365 texts minimalism chronicles of simplicity
Reflections and drafts

Goal of the day: 195 words. Written: 288. Photo author: Vi Kontrimaitė

Also, simplicity is not... Refusal to the point of total non-availability. 

I can understand why you might think that - monks, hermits and followers of various religions (such as Buddhism) do indeed live simple lives. And they might live fully, truly, happily. But you don't have to give up everything to be happy.

Available. For some people, it's actually nicer that way. But it's certainly not recommended and it's certainly not something I would encourage. As a Lithuanian saying goes, too much is a bit, sometimes, unhealthy.

The idea that possessions, desires, feelings, friends or some other single thing (or several things) are the culprits of our human suffering is not a new idea. It was spoken of by the Buddha himself, when he suggested giving up bad feelings; by Seneca, when he suggested giving up unnecessary possessions and bad habits; by various medieval monks; and by modern-day Krishnaites.

While it is healthy to reduce unnecessary things, there is no need to overdo it, because overdoing it is the opposite of simplicity.

As I write this, thoughts of Diogenes of Sinope and his life story keep coming to mind. It is a pity that none of the writings of this founder of the philosophy of cynicism have survived. But, thanks to the chroniclers of the time, stories from his life are known.

I'll leave it to you to look into his philosophy of cynicism, but a rather interesting feature of his personality was that he didn't value any object. One story says that he chose to live in an empty shoe, wearing only a single cloth toga and having only a single cup for drinking water. One day, Diogenes saw a child drawing water from the river with the palms of his hands and realised he could do without the cup and threw it away.

In the end, Diogenes ended his life either by being eaten by a poisonous octopus or buried by a rabid dog. Interesting times then.

Simplicity is also not...

  • Austerity;
  • Avoiding the pleasures of life;
  • Life in counting and limiting;
  • Spiritual Liberation Practice;
  • New Age religion;
  • Suitable for everyone (I'll tell you more about that);
  • The eco-fashion;
  • Art style;
  • Business;

Simplicity is philosophy. And it is meant to be lived in a pleasant way.


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