Activism

As well as transitioning to the Simpler Way ourselves, it is also important that at least some of us help bring more attention to the Simpler Way by becoming activists for the cause. In a world where we are constantly bombarded with advertisements telling us that ‘more is always better,’ more people need to see that there is a viable and desirable alternative to consumer lifestyles. Perhaps you can you help spread the word?

  • Email a link to this website to everyone on your mailing list: This is a simple, quick, and costless act, but it may resonate far wider that you would have ever expected, like ripples in a cultural pond. It may well help free people from the chains of consumer culture. Living simply in a consumer culture can be very challenging, but this website provides a free and accessible introduction to the practice of the Simpler Way. As you have seen, there are hundreds of ideas here about how to live more on less. Please share it with others.
  • Email a link to this website to your local schools, city councillors, and Members of Parliament: Again, this is a simple and costless act with potentially huge implications. Imagine children learnt about living simply in schools? Imagine our political representatives started talking about simple living? Soon enough our world would change.
  • Abandon a book: Invest in a book on voluntary simplicity, permaculture, or peak oil, and leave it in your common room at work. Perhaps leave another copy in the local café. This is a peaceful, non-confrontation way to educate people about the Simpler Way. Education is the first phase of activism.
  • Join or establish a committee to create a community garden: Get a few interested individuals together and form a plan. Do some research on where the best place for a community garden would be; then contact your city council and try to get the ball rolling. Keep at it.
  • Guerrilla gardening: This term refers to the cultivation of land that you don’t own but which you think you can enrich by cultivating productively – without permission, as such. Moderate Guerrilla Gardeners cultivate their nature strips without seeking council approval. More serious practitioners survey their neighbourhoods for other suitable spots. Seek and ye shall find. It is important to be sensible, of course. One shouldn’t plant anything that might block vision of traffic, for example. But after taking such precautions – and after cultivating your own garden first – one can then proceed confidently, knowing that Guerrilla Gardening is a peaceful and honourable act of opposition. Such acts will be justified in the eyes of posterity.
  • Establish a ‘Simplicity Circle’: Invite a group of interested individuals to your place (or some other venue) for the purpose of discussing all aspects of living simply. This is a wonderful opportunity to share information and ideas and the discussion process can be very affirming. You don’t have to be an expert.
  • Culture Jamming: This term refers to the work of ‘oppositional artists’ who use various forms of creative expression to challenge and subvert the entrenched norms of corporate consumerism. Think creatively. Act creatively. Resist.
  • Strategy: Think carefully about the issue of ‘strategy.’ Ask yourself: ‘Toward which forms of creative resistance should I direct my time and energy?’

6 Comments

  1. This dust can enter the house with the air and cause illness and aggravate any dust related allergies.

    Household products such as vegetable oil and castile soap can be combined with vinegar to clean wood decks naturally as well.

    They also produce mycotoxins which may lead to neurological problems.

  2. Hi all,

    I have created a google-group designed for discussion of the voluntary simplicity movement. Particularly the political aspect – how to we build and grow and self-consciously political movement for change to a simpler society? Please feel free to join up and/or invite others who you know may be interested.

    You should be able to find the group a the following link: https://groups.google.com/forum/?fromgroups=#!aboutgroup/thesimplerway

    Otherwise search for ‘simplicity discussion forum’ in the google-groups search function.

    Cheers

  3. Asset map your locality. Find out what it can already do for itself, and find out what it needs to get better at doing. Then start a transition town and fill in the gaps.

  4. Read Ted Trainer’s book, Toward a Sustainable and Just World, especially the last two chapters. Important perspective on how best to direct our limited time and energies. His important message is: don’t rely on governments. We have to do it ourselves. Thanks Ted, and thanks to Samuel and Simon too for getting this project underway. Necessary stuff.

  5. In the U.S. we have the Cooperative Extension Service which operates in most communities. They are a good agency to provide help with starting community gardens. They also have an education program, Master Gardeners, to teach people how to grow in their specific region. In some places the Master Gardeners maintain demonstration gardens to show people what is possible in their growing region.

  6. It’s also worth noting that being an activist for a cause you believe in is a very fulfilling way to spend your time. Over my life as an activist of various dimensions, I look back and realise that some of my richest memories are times when I was trying to build a better world, meeting other passionate people.

    Thanks for this great website. I’ll do what I can to bring it more attention. Cheers, J.

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