Voluntary Simplicity: Toward a Way of Life That Is Outwardly Simple, Inwardly Rich
When Voluntary Simplicity was first published in 1981, it quickly became recognized as a powerful and visionary work in the emerging dialogue over sustainable ways of living. Nearly three decades later, as the planets environmental stresses become more urgent than ever, Duane Elgin has revised and updated his revolutionary book.Voluntary Simplicity is not about living in poverty; it is about living with balance. This book illuminates the pattern of changes that an increasing number of people around the world are making in their everyday livesadjustments in day-to-day living that are an active, positive response to the complex dilemmas of our time. By embracing a lifeway of voluntary simplicitycharacterized by ecological awareness, frugal consumption, and personal growthpeople can change their lives. And in the process, they have the power to change the world.
Voluntary Simplicity is an education, an inspiration, and a pleasure to read.
By Robert Elliott "A Contemplative Reader" - January 5, 2010
Voluntary Simplicity: Toward a way of life that is outwardly simple, inwardly rich, 2nd ed. Duane Elgin.
In 1981 when the first edition of this book was published the ideas were widely regarded as counter-cultural and unnecessary. The book was ahead of its time. Now three decades have passed and the world is a very different place, a place distressingly similar to the one the author warned us about. The global and ecological concerns that Elgin pointed to are now painfully obvious; the inadequacies of materialistic lifestyles focused on accumulating wealth and possessions are evident, and their ecological costs are inescapable. On the other hand, the benefits of living more simply and consciously are increasingly apparent.
Duane Elgin is one of today's most sophisticated social thinkers, and deservedly won the 2006 International Goi Peace Award for his contributions to a global "vision, consciousness, and lifestyle." Consequently, this fully revised... read more
A few nice quotes. Little practicality.
By Beth Jones - May 3, 2011
I went into this book thinking it would offer more practical examples of or suggestions for how to live simply, but there is a lot of fluff here, especially with the many survey responses from people saying the same empty thing. Some of the philosophy is sound while other parts of it are lacking in reality. Realistic answers are what the simplicity movement require. Not to mention, the focus of the book is a bit scattered. In one instance, the focus is purely on simplicity for the sake of it while in other parts, it seems the author is talking more about living simply for the environment while never really coming to a clear thesis on his mission. And, whatever he is talking about rests more on empty rhetoric than specifics. I wrote down a few clever quotes but most of them are attributed to other authors the author quoted. I imagine there are other more practical, realistic books on this movement out there . . . I hope.
Vital reading for simple, sustainable and fulfilling living
By Steven V. Ruddell "Steven Ruddell" - January 19, 2010
Have you ever questioned whether we're living at a time when our consumerism has exceeded the earth's capacity to sustain us? Or have you wondered whether our industrial production has contributed to a warming earth that might activate tipping points we can't fully imagine and bring about climate change, including potential flooding, freezing, famine, and species extinction ... maybe our own?! If so, give a sigh of relief. Yes, there's something each individual, no matter how "small", can do to awaken fully to what is happening and what we can do to make a change now, right where we are, to a simpler, saner, sustainable life style, culture, and planet. With elegant competence, Duane Elgin shows us the way with this completely rewritten second edition of his classic, Voluntary Simplicity.
I felt inspired from Edgar Mitchell's uplifting introduction through the 1981 forward written by Ram Das, which explores in detail the needed integration of "West" and "East" (outer and... read more
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