Have you ever wanted to escape the rat race and live a simpler less consumerist life?
Have you ever wanted to be free and live a more meaningful life away from all the distractions? Ever wanted to step out of your comfort zone and explore what it means to live in community? This is what nine people did over the course of 2015 in rural Gippsland Australia. Nine people from different walks of life came together as part of a year long project to explore what it means to demonstrate a simpler way to live in response to the global crisis.
Many people believe that you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone, but this community has discovered that the exact opposite is true. Gone are many of the conveniences and accessories of present-day civilization, in its place is the truest form of a social network. Some left drudging 40-hour work weeks spent in the service of large and faceless corporations. In their new reality, they find everything they need in the natural world that surrounds them in every direction and through the support they find in their fellow co-inhabitants.
Our energy intensive, resource rich, consumer lifestyles have been responsible for eradicating species at an alarming rate: deforestation on a scale never seen before, over exploitation of many of the earth’s natural resources, and the accumulation of toxins throughout the environment. While many are pinning their hopes on the idea that technology will save us, it is worth considering simplicity as a solution to the many challenges the world faces. As Leonardo da Vinci once said, “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication,” or Bertrand Russell’s sentiment, “It is preoccupation with possessions, more than anything else, that prevents us from living freely and nobly.”
What Does it Mean to Live Simply?
For this diverse group of conscientious citizens, it means that you reconnect to the natural world, conserve your resources, and peel back the extravagances, economic shackles, and unsustainable definitions of success in the modern industrialized world. In their tiny homes, hand-crafted from largely recycled materials, they seek the purity that comes from a return to the basics. Throughout the year the group built tiny houses, planted veggie gardens, practised simple living, and learned how to live in community.
This film is the product of hundreds of hours of footage shot by Jordan Osmond from Happen Films, who documented the community over 12 months. This is the first feature film made by Jordan in conjunction with the ‘Simplicity Institute’ and Samuel Alexander with a budget of just $11, 260— all of it crowdfunded by generous supporters.
Before we can move to a simpler way of life, we must let go of our idea that happiness and indeed any kind of meaningful satisfaction can be gained by consumption. We must understand that our standard of living and our quality of life are very different creatures. Our quality of life doesn’t depend on consumption and the attainment of wealth. Being conscious of how we spend our money, what we eat, how we commute, and where we live, has implications for our Mother Earth and impacts each and every one of us. Check out the full length feature A Simpler Way: Crisis as Opportunity and follow each step of this fascinating year-long journey.
To support and download the entire documentary and find out more about the ‘Living the Change’ series being produced by Happen Films Click Here
Excerpts also taken from Rethink…Your world, Your future.