Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Simplicity



My dinner is pictured above. It has probably been my dinner on 50% of the nights I've been home: vegetables and tempeh or tofu stir-fried with low-sodium tamari sauce and a few squirts of Ginger Jerk sauce. I'd like to serve it over rice but I'm trying hard to limit starches to lunch only. I make a large portion of the stirfry (it's pictured in a bowl that you'd serve a large salad in, or chips...mmm, chips...) and it's definitely filling.

I don't really get tired of the endless procession of stirfrys. They don't take long to prepare, they're hot and fresh tasting, and they are obviously packed with nutrients and fiber.

I feel like since I've started going semi-vegan and overhauling my diet, my attitude towards non-food things has changed as well. I've been thinking about all the stuff in my condo and the amount of time I spend shopping for stuff, carting it home, and returning it when it isn't right. Apart from the money, I resent stuff taking up my time. I've definitely made some major purchases in the past months, like a new bed, but I haven't been making as many minor purchases or shopping recreationally as much.

I do buy into the idea of voluntary simplicity, and consider myself very lucky that I can choose not to buy things; in other words, that I have the means to buy them if I wanted. I realize that I cherish one or two special objects more than if I buy the same object several times. For example, I really love the three antique map prints that I have. If my condo was bedecked with them, each one wouldn't be as special to me. In practice, I'm finding that buying a new shirt or pair of shoes doesn't perk me up as much as it used to. I consider this a good thing.

I've been doing some reading on materialism & spending, and the following have been good resources:

Affluenza
Adbusters
The Overspent American
Your Money or Your Life
Nickel and Dimed (not about simplicity but it made me realize how ridiculously much I have)

I'm curious to know if other vegans have found themselves rejecting stuff while changing their diets. Non-vegans, please also chime in about any voluntary simplicity changes you may have made.

2 comments:

Mihl said...

I eat a lot of stir fry as well because I also think that it's an easy to prepare, simple but very satisfying dish. And since becoming vegan I also think a lot about what to buy and what not even if it's a non food item. I want the people who manufacture that product to be treated and paid well. I want no chemicals in there, I don't want the product to travel thousands of miles and so on...and in the end there's always the question, do I need this product at all? Couldn't I do without? So, yeah, I think I understand what you mean.

Katyola said...

I like the idea of simplifying my life, but I don't really live it. Moving to Richmond involved discarding some furniture, but I've had to buy more to replace it. I do try to consider what I need to do before setting out of the house to run errands, just so I won't have to retrace steps. But I don't consider myself a very efficient person, and maybe I'm not meant to be.