I’ve logged more experience than most with simplicity and the complexity you discover inside simplicity, minimalism and asocial behavior, endurance and landscape.
Here is the truth: I think some deep wisdom inside me (a) sensed the stress, (b) was terrified for me, and (c) gave me something new and hard to focus on in order to prevent me from lapsing into a despair coma — and also to keep me from having a jelly jar of wine in my hand.
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My family, in particular, was in danger. We were the wrong religion (Presbyterian) for our neighborhood, and my father had a reputation as a Darwinist. To many of our neighbors, Christians and Muslims alike, his belief that humans had evolved from monkeys was blasphemy, and he was careful not to show his face in public.
This isn’t about “paper or plastic” or some vision of self-congratulatory parsimony. It’s about replacing material gratifications with spiritual ones. I don’t know how much carbon I’m offsetting with my choices. I just prefer to be a good animal rather than one that fouls its nest.
Cooking has always been a part of my life, but more like the furniture than an object of scrutiny, much less a passion. I counted myself lucky to have a parent — my mother — who loved to cook and almost every night made us a delicious meal. By the time I had a place of my own, I could find my way around a kitchen well enough, the result of nothing more purposeful than all those hours spent hanging around the kitchen while my mother fixed dinner.
I became a vegetarian in September 1971 after meeting a man wearing a white robe during orientation week at Cornell University. I saw this saintlike figure reposing on a hill, staring at a tree. Curious, I approached; he told me his name was Peter and begged me to sit. Soon he was explaining the Essene Gospel of Peace.
The world begins at a kitchen table. No matter what, we must eat to live.
Everyone knows that Western civilization (and probably Eastern civilization too) will collapse on December 21, 2012. The Mayans predicted it, and the Mayans have never been wrong. The question is: how will you survive? The answer is simple. Follow the advice below.
Shared desserts, a summer romance, the last batch of pickled plums
She began cooking the stew at 5:41 A.M. on Thursday. Somewhere in the night her husband had, as was his habit, moved to the middle of the bed, and she’d found herself precariously perched between his chest and the edge of the mattress, the inhabitant of an inconsequential strip of bedding that had, over the past few years, become her home.