Here’s what started me along this journey to now. In late 2007 I moved to the USA for three years to take up an awesome position I was offered. I’m an Aerospace Engineer and earn a tidy income. From a young age, I followed the prescribed path: Do well at school, go to University, get a good job, climb the ladder, save money along the way, buy a house, buy another, and another….. You get the picture. I was doing what we are all taught to do: work hard, make a million or so and then retire from the rat race, happy and free. At 30 I was well on the way and by all measures in our society I was successful.
However, within about 3 months of living in the USA, something in me shifted. Something wasn’t quite right and I couldn’t put my finger on it. Over time it occured to me what it was that I was feeling. America is the epitomy of capitalist culture, something the rest of the world is trying to emulate. But after living here just a short time I started to see where the system wasn’t working. We were all rushing around being busy all the time. We spend our life working to buy more stuff in order to keep up with the Jones’ and appear like we have all the trappings of success. It leaves us exhausted at the end of the day, so we grab some convenience food and shovel it down while numbing our minds with 100+ channels of cable TV (most of which is utter crap). There is no time to enjoy nature. There is no time to ponder where our food comes from. There is no time to consider how we are polluting the world, our bodies and our minds. There is no time to stop and ask whether this is how we want to live our lives.
So I stopped. I stopped being so busy and I spent more time under a tree, just thinking. And with that time I gained clarity. I decided that I wanted to live my life differently, a life filled with purpose, wisdom and joy. I started reading, and reading, and reading. I learnt more about history and our world, all the ills we are forcing upon it, on our animals, on ourselves.
Now I’m on the path to becoming a better human. I am moving towards a simpler life where I can do work which is personally rewarding and in doing so, spend less time as a wage slave. I am enjoying the real beauty of life without having to spend money to do so. I take the time to enjoy my relationships. I am slowing down, reducing stress and concentrating on having a healthy, strong body which will take me to amazing places for many years to come. I want to do more to help our sick Earth and I want to see and experience as much of our world as I can. I want to learn. This blog will cover many of my experiences and I hope to share much of what I learn along the way.
Photo by: Colin Purrington