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Posts Tagged ‘inspiration’

As I gradually experiment with the intellectual, emotional and lifestyle changes associated with an eco-conscious life-yes, I have officially decided that this is my new “green” descriptive but my blog name probably won’t change for a while– I try to remind myself why anyone is or would be interested in this life.  It’s not only about maintaining and hopefully improving a damaged world but also understanding and creating a sustainable life as a survival tool.  A question that has interested me for many years goes along the lines of, ” If everything were to rapidly begin falling apart tomorrow, what do I know and what can I do to survive? ”  Before I continue, I am referring to an economic disaster that changes the face of our everyday lives, not necessarily nuclear war or zombies although its good to try to be prepared 🙂  Here I introduce a new category for future posts, Sustainability as Survival.  Yes, this sounds ominous, but I was fully inspired by another book I am reading called The Urban Homestead: Your Guide to Self-Sufficient Living in the Heart of the City by Kelly Coyne and Erik Knutzen.  I admit that I first assumed it would be another thin guide to the charm of chickens and what you can grow on a patio.  While both of these topics are discussed, the authors forge ahead with each subject as a facet of the concept of homesteading.  Homesteading (to myself) being a way of life that emphasizes self-reliance and ingenuity rather than consumption based beyond the home and passive reliance on resources controlled by others.

One section of the book that really caught my interest was about how to construct your own stoves and other heat appliances.  I have been introduced to an item they call the “Buddy Burner.”  It is cardboard that has been curled and stuffed in a shallow can then allowed to soak in wax until you have a kind of high-powered candle.  A simple concept that when read emphasized my lack of knowledge about basic and intermediate levels of living.

The broad range of subjects, overall tone and emphasis in important details makes this book such a standout and a truly useful resource for anyone considering a more independent eco-conscious life that can easily translate to help in a (possible) time of hardship.

Ruminating on this question of long-term survival can seem depressing, I wasn’t sure I even wanted to post this.  However, the “green” or eco-conscious movement begs this topic to be considered.  Why else are people wanting to learn how to live without plastic, grow their own food or power their own homes?  The more I write about and research the concepts of sustainability, the art of homesteading, a lifestyle that emphasizes reduced consumption and advanced self-sufficiency the more I understand the essential connections amongst these topics.

What do you think of sustainability as survival?

 

At the end of the day...

 

 

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As I experiment with the various green improvements to my lifestyle I like to read a few types of books (besides my usual perusal of the internet, which I can say sometimes gets a little overwhelming!)  At first I stuck to the nitty gritty informational kind that included cleaning product recipes, organic gardening and self-sufficiency/homesteading advice.  Most of these are great, but I feel the gap between my current life and the fruitful organic garden and chemical-free environment.  I needed to uncover my own motivations toward change in hopes of discovering how to attain my green-life goals.  Recently I have begun to read books that focus more on the intellectual and spiritual reasons for choosing a green.  This month’s book is Twelve By Twelve: A One-Room Cabin Off the Grid & Beyond the American Dream by William Powers.  So far it is a deeply emotional and spiritual look at why one person chose and why another person may choose to pursue a extremely simplified and in turn, greener life.  Once I am finished a final review will be posted under my Inspirations and Resources page.  Until then I will share the tid bits that speak to me most.

Finally, the word “green.”  For my purposes and the purposes of many a blog and book, green is not only meant to be understood as the desired color of a perfect world, but in a much larger sense as a way of harmonious and clean life.  I struggle with the use of “green” as the descriptor.  It has become short-hand for a multitude of thoughts and philosophies and I often feel that the intricate and awesome connections amongst them is lost in order for this movement to stay “catchy.”  In an upcoming post I want to explore these connections and hopefully find a new way of describing my work-it may even mean changing the name of this blog!!

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