Minimalism and Sentience
I’ve been reading about minimalism lately and have been thinking about the impact of the energetic vibrations of all of the “sentient” things in my world. I’ve designated sentient in quotation marks because my past experience was that only “beings with brains that can feel” had the capability of sentience. However, I now believe that EVERY THING – including my husband, my Grandma’s geranium, the wooden chair in my dining room, and the filet mignon in a restaurant ALL have an energetic signature, and by extension sentience. This energetic vibration can impact me in a positive, negative, or neutral manner as it interacts with my energetic vibration. The sentience paradigm reminds me of the quandary Captain Jean-Luc Picard was in when a cyberneticist was interested in taking Lieutenant Commander Data apart to see what makes him tick. But I digress…
Minimalism vs. Consumerism
I’ve had thoughtful discussions with my husband about minimalism vs. consumerism—especially in relation to energy. I cannot get past the idea that fully embracing minimalism means letting go of some creature comforts that I hold dear. This assumed sense of lack is energetically uncomfortable for me. However, I also long ago eschewed consumerism as a path to happiness. I’ve found that too much “stuff” in my life can be energetically draining.
We don’t live beyond our means, which is what I feel the minimalism movement strives to counteract. We are blessed to have careers that support our financial obligations, wants, and charitable giving bountifully. We also make fiscally responsible choices such as driving vehicles until the useful life is fully expended; buying consumables such as food and toilet paper in bulk and on sale; having a reserve fund for emergencies; and only purchasing big ticket items such as vacations when we can pay for these items with cash. We don’t go without anything we need or desire. But we also don’t have the need to drive the newest model luxury car.
Contentment Lies in the Middle
I feel that at the end of the day, it’s all about contentment. I think about the psychology of the two disparate approaches to living—minimalism vs. consumerism. As alluded to above, I do not fully fit into either category. I embrace some minimalistic tendencies and also some acts of blatant consumerism. I love my life. But more importantly I am content with my life.
Six Sigma Minimalism
However, life is a constant approach to “eliminating defects“, isn’t it? There are always opportunities for improvement, and minimalism helps me to consider ways to increase my life enjoyment quotient. Although I receive great joy from the energetic vibration of a lot of the stuff I have, some of the stuff I have is not on the same energetic vibration as my soul, thus this incompatibility causes dissonance instead of joy.
Confessions of a Bibliophile
In the past I’ve shared that I’m a bibliophile. Although I feel the library is one of the best institutions in my community, from which I appreciate the lending opportunities, I also derive great enjoyment from owning newly printed books. Sometimes, even though I know I’ll only read a book once, I still crave that new book experience. As a minimalist, I would probably eschew this practice entirely, and just rely on the library. However, I find that I can receive great joy by having the new book experience and continue that joy by donating to my favorite institution for others to derive enjoyment in the future.
I think it’s all about balance, choice, gratitude, and most importantly contentment.
Goldilocks’ Philosophy to Life
The goal of most advertising is to create a sense of lack that can only be “solved” by the product or service offered. Sadly, the constant onslaught of advertisers preying on the psyches of the indoctrinated societal norms for human behavior creates a focus on the external world vs. the internal soul. As a result of this conditioning, throughout my life I’ve encountered a number of people who are constantly striving for something more.
Instead of looking inward to fill this need, without fail these people seek external validation. They tend to make purchases beyond their financial means and constantly compare themselves with others. These people are not happy. The older I become, the more tiresome I find these people to be around. I don’t need or want to compare myself to anyone else. I don’t have the biggest house; I don’t have the smallest house. I don’t have the newest whatever; I don’t have the oldest whatever. Society doesn’t deem me to be the most successful person in the world; society doesn’t deem me to be the least successful person in the world.
However, none of those comparisons matter, because I’m like Goldilocks. I have found my “just right” in life. I don’t need to compare myself to others and I don’t look for external validation that I’ve made the right life choices.
I’m happy with my choices because those choices are MINE.
I made them.
I own them.
If I want to tweak or change a choice, I’m always free to do so.
If you haven’t already done so, I encourage you to find your “just right” in life. I promise you it’s the road to happiness!