My husband and I have been talking about ways to simplify our lives. Space is something of a premium and we’re both pack rats in our own ways. Brad is more likely to bring home something electronic or potentially useful, whereas I really shouldn’t be allowed anywhere near a bin of discount books. This results in piles of things that will most likely never, ever get used or read.
Also, both of us being of a spiritual bent, having clutter in the home carries a worrisome note, as if the clutter reflects our own interior state. Both of us believe that this material world is neither the end all or the be all, that though the physical body is important, what isn’t important (or really essential) in the grand scheme of things is how many books/USB cords/whatever one may own. We’re certainly not going to take it with us, to fall back onto that old adage.
Besides, as we move ever onward in our lives (whether we like it or not) and the years pass by, we realize that there’s less and less time for certain frivolous things. It’s almost as if, as we age, we’re narrowing down onto what is most important. There’s a growing urge to shed what may be seen as immature or is reflective of a person that we no longer are.
This manifested when I deleted my roleplay account on tumblr. Several reasons went into that decision, but two of the big ones were that, one, I didn’t really have the time anymore for that hobby and, two, I’ve outgrown it. This isn’t to say that roleplaying is an inherently immature hobby. I suppose when I say I’ve outgrown it, I mean that I’ve moved on from it. It’s no longer important to me and it’s getting in the way of what is.
On Saturday, Brad went through all of our DVDs. We had several hundred of them, including tv shows and movies. Most of them we’ll never watch. They were just taking up space. We also had some bed linens that are too small for our bed. Those also got packed up, all of it taken to Goodwill, where someone else might have a use for them.
At the heart of simplicity is the desire to focus on the essential. I can’t find the quote for the life of me, but a saint once prayed that the threads about her ankles be cut so that she could better fly up to Heaven. The threads represented not only sin but also attachment to the world. She had a goal but she needed help to focus upon it. I wonder how many people just fade away, never accomplishing anything or feeling fulfilled, because they won’t let go of that which hinders them? Of course, it takes a bit of wisdom to recognize what does hinder, and I’m sorry to say that wisdom is a little lacking in this day and age.