I'm part of a Life Lessons group. We are assigned something to read or view one week and then we meet to hang out and discuss how it fits into our lives the next week. The Life Lessons groups have a more spiritual than religious focus although we often refer to scripture. It just seems to fit. I love hanging out with this group. We eat, drink, share, laugh, cry and I always leave feeling uplifted and enlightened.
Our last lesson's central theme fit in nicely with our celebration of Earth Day. We are reading the book, Simplicity Lessons by Linda Pierce. Our lesson dealt with the idea that America's high consumption lifestyles are unhealthy for us and for the planet. Chapter Two in this book is entitled: Do You Own Your Stuff or Does It Own You? In in Pierce writes, "With fewer possessions, it's much easier to develop a genuine love and appreciation for the things you keep in your life." We discussed how we complain often about lack of time yet we spend it accumulating things, things we may not need. Things that take our focus from what is really important in life.
When I am troubled I always head outside. It is where I feel closest to God and where I can hear Him speak the clearest so I love these words from Dale Carnegie.
We discussed in our group how in many instances we would be as happy or happier with less materialism in our lives. The key is to pay attention to what provides the real quality in our lives. It is about mindful living. This awareness brings great fullness to lives and creates an understanding of what this life is really about.