Archives: Spirit of Simplicity - Quotes

Archives: Spirit of Simplicity - Quotes

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Spirit of Simplicity

Table of Contents

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NOTE: "Also ref." (also refer to) indicates that, though it is quoted only once in this collection, the same quotation can also be found in these additional sources.

Quotes by Categories

6. Alternative Giving

Alternative Christmas Events (Third World Crafts & Clothing)

#100's | #1000's | #2000's | #3000's | #4000's | #5000's

I Volunteer

How much is enough? How much does anyone require? Can I be both kind and tough? Can I put faith before desire? Right now, for all time, I vow to try . . . I volunteer to be simple, I volunteer to love, Every living thing like a mountain stream that flows out o'er the land. I volunteer for the journey from here to heaven's gate. I will do my part I place my heart in Your gracious hands . . . How then shall we live? Let us live lightly as a feather. How much shall we give? Let us give everything, together One heart, one mind, all humankind... I volunteer... --Alan AtKisson

I Love, Therefore I Am --Alan AtKisson

If I give away all my possessions... but do not have love, I gain nothing. --I Corinthians 13. What keeps me from giving the gift of myself more often? What non-material gifts could I give on the various gift-giving occasions during the year? --TREK

Just as you did it to one of the least of these... you did it to me. --Matthew 25:31-40. What sense of connection with people in need can unlock my compassion and generosity? Was there ever a time when I really didn't have enough money? How did or does that make me feel about people who are wealthier than me? --TREK

God loves a cheerful giver. --II Corinthians 9:7. Jesus calls all who would follow him to a joyful life of carefree unconcern for possessions: Give to everyone who begs from you, and do not refuse anyone who wants to borrow from you. --Matthew 5:42

Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not men. --Ephesians 6:7

Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me. --Matthew 25:40

He who has a bountiful eye will be blessed, for he shares his bread with the poor. --Proverbs 22:9

When someone steals a man's clothes
we call him a thief.
Should we not give the same name
to one who could
clothe the naked
and does not?
The bread in your cupboard
belongs to the hungry man;
the coat hanging unused
in your closet
belongs to the man
who has no shoes;
The money which you
hoard up
belongs to the poor.
--Basil the Great

Happiness comes from spiritual wealth, not material wealth. Happiness comes from giving, not getting. If we try hard to bring happiness to others, we cannot stop it from coming to us also. To get joy, we must give it, and to keep joy we must scatter it. --John Templeton

What we give to the poor... is what we carry with us when we die. --Peter Marin

Kindness is the dove of God,
Who overshadows the darkness,
As it glides along the Earth with its silver wings.
Its golden eyes seek and destroy the darkness,
And restore peace to the land.
--Jim Tran, age ten

Jesus did about everything for us. Yes, it's true. He even died for us. Jesus did all His kind deeds and miracles for us. Remember when you do a kind act, you're doing something for Jesus. --Jeffery Wood, age nine

We are not placed on this Earth to see through each other, but to see each other through. --William M. Kinnaird

Life's most persistent and urgent question is, What are you doing for others? --Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

You don't have to go overseas to be a missionary. You just go into your world and do your best to make a difference. Do what you can one life at a time, right here at home.--Bobbie Mason

Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are endless. --Mother Teresa

While great brilliance and intellect are to be admired, they cannot dry one tear or mend a broken spirit. Only kindness can do this. --John M. Drescher

One can never pay in gratitude; one can only pay 'in kind' somewhere else in life. --Anne Morrow Lindbergh

God gives us two hands - one to receive with and one to give with. We are not cisterns made for hoarding; we are channels made for sharing. --Billy Graham

To give without any reward, or any notice, has a special quality of its own. --Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Helping people takes time, and free time is a commodity most of us have in scant supply. It is probably at least partly true, for that reason, that the time we give to others is such a treasure to God. --Stephen Fortosis

A kind deed a day, like little drops of rain, makes a mighty ocean. --Lim Hsiu Mei

The power of love and caring can change the world. --James Autry

The nicest thing we can do for our heavenly Father is to be kind to one of His children. --Saint Teresa of Avila

To love abundantly is to live abundantly. --Anonymous

It is more blessed to give than to receive. --Acts of the Apostles 20:35

Grace gives without the receiver realizing how great the gift really is. --Rebecca Manley Pippert

If anyone says, 'I love God,' and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. --1 John 4:21

Make yourself necessary to someone. --Ralph Waldo Emerson

We are not made for law, we are made for love. --George Macdonald

Sow the seeds of kindness and reap the harvest of happiness. --Chua Guat Mui

Kindness is a language which the dumb can speak, the deaf can understand. --C.N. Bovee

You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give. --Kahlil Gibran

Everyone can be great because everyone can serve. --Martin Luther King, Jr.

Kindness. Don't leave home without it. --Ng Hei-Di

Our most valuable possessions are those which can be shared without lessening: those which, when shared, multiply. --William H. Danforth

There are no great people except those who have rendered service to humankind. --Anonymous

Cultivate the giving habit as you do the saving habit. --Grenville Kleiser

Small service is true service. The daisy, by the shadow that it casts, protects the lingering dewdrop from the sun. --William Wordsworth

6-Q1041 [Also ref. 0820]
You cannot do a kindness too soon, because you never know how soon it will be too late. --Ralph Waldo Emerson

Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and will be repaid in full. --Proverbs 19:17

Pray for us, brothers and sisters in Christ, that we may not fail in the oil of comfort, the wine of justice, the involvement of the patient mule, and the generosity which, having given, promises more, until recovery is complete. --A plea from Hong Kong

Those who are generous are blessed, for they share their bread with the poor. --Proverbs 22:9

Lord, we know that you'll be coming through the line today. So, Lord, help us to treat you well, help us to treat you well. --Prayer of Mary Glover

When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap to the very edges of your field, or gather the gleanings of your harvest; you shall leave them for the poor and for the alien: I am the Lord your God. --Leviticus 23:22

Kindness does not go rotten. --Swahili proverb

When Oxfam was distributing food rations in Cambodia during the famine, hundreds of people waited quietly for their share. But when fish nets were handed out, the crowd cheered. --Joe Short

We read the Gospel as if we had no money, and we spend our money as if we know nothing of the Gospel. --John Haughey, S.J.

Words that come from the heart enter the heart. --Moses Ibn Ezra

The conclusion is always the same: love is the most powerful and still the most unknown energy of the world. --Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Love doesn't make the world go 'round. Love is what makes the ride worthwhile. --Franklin P. Jones

We are visitors on this planet. We are here for ninety, one hundred years at the very most. During that period, we must try to do something useful with our lives. Try to be at peace with yourself, and help others share that peace. If you contribute to other people's happiness, you will find the goal, the true meaning of life. --Dalai Lama

The only ones among you who will be truly happy are those who have sought and found how to serve. --Albert Schweitzer

Give of your hands to serve and your hearts to love. --Mother Teresa

My religion is kindness. --Dalai Lama

Riches are like water in the house whose channels are obstructed; if it finds no exit it drowns the owner. --Oriental Proverb

In hell people have chopsticks but they are 3 ft. long so they cannot reach their mouths. In heaven the chopsticks are the same length, but in heaven the people feed one another. --Vietnamese story

Those of us who live in affluent circumstances accept our duty to develop a simple life in order to contribute more generously to both relief and evangelism. --Lausanne Covenant

It's one of the most beautiful compensations in life that no man can truly help another without helping himself. --Ralph Waldo Emerson

6-Q4123 [also ref.1017 & 2217]
We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give. --Aaron Copland

Love gives itself, it is not bought. --Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Compassion seems to be the greatest power. --Dalai Lama

As God loves a cheerful giver, so he also loves a cheerful taker. Who takes hold of his gifts with a glad heart. --John Donne

The only gift is a portion of thyself. --Ralph Waldo Emerson

Return to Table of Contents

7. Economics

Money, Goods, Property
Green Business
Socially Responsible Investing (SRI)
Personal Finance
Credit & Debt

#100's | #1000's | #2000's | #3000's | #4000's | #5000's

Debt is the Enforcer of the addiction of overconsumption. Debt is a monster, a mobster that would control our lives! Avoid debt by controlling consumption. --Gerald Iversen

Fear of success can also be tied into the idea that success means someone else's loss. Some people are unconsciously guilty because they believe their victories are coming at the expense of another. --Joan C. Harvey

If riches increase, set not your heart on them. --Psalm 62:10.
Those who trust in their riches will wither. --Proverbs. 11:28.
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on Earth. --Matthew 6:21, 19.

The biblical injunctions against exploitation of the poor and the accumulation of wealth are clear and straightforward. The Bible challenges nearly every economic value of contemporary society. --TREK

For the love of money is root of all kinds of evil, and in their eagerness to be rich some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains. --1 Timothy 6:6-10.

Keep your lives from the love of money, and be content with what you have; for he has said, 'I will never leave you or forsake you.' --Hebrews 13:5

Nobody can serve two masters; such a person will either hate one master and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and Money. --Luke 16:13

It is a mistake -- as so many over-centralized socialist societies have discovered -- to try to eliminate money as an incentive. Money is one incentive among many, and has its place. But to put no limits on the impulse to accumulate money obsessively is as destructive as to place no limits on the impulse to commit violence. A viable democratic society needs a ceiling and a floor with regard to the distribution of wealth and assets. --Philip Slater

Economists must learn to subtract. When pollution, depletion of nonrenewable resources, car exhaust-related health costs and other social and ecological costs are subtracted from the GDP (Gross Domestic Product), then economic "progress" levels off around 1975 and starts falling thereafter. --Culture Jam

Money never made a man happy yet, nor will it. There is nothing in its nature to produce happiness. The more a man has, the more he wants. Instead of filling a vacuum, it makes one. --Benjamin Franklin

Why is the goal of economics growth in production of goods and services, instead of growth in the health of persons in communities? --Carol Johnston

Our enormously productive economy... demands that we make consumption our way of life, that we convert the buying and use of goods into rituals, that we seek our spiritual satisfaction, our ego satisfaction, in consumption.... We need things consumed, burned up, worn out, replaced, and discarded at an ever-increasing rate. --Victor Lebow, c. 1945

Globalization of the economy means globalization of the ecological crisis. --William Rees and Mathis Wackernagel

I have not observed men's honesty to increase with their riches. --Thomas Jefferson

I don't want to make money, I just want to be wonderful. --Marylin Monroe

Ours is the age which is proud of machines that think, and suspicious of men who try to. --Howard Mumford Jones

Money was invented as a lubricant for the barter system, but we're way overdue for a lube and oil change. --Dan Robinson

In America today, the farther away you get from where the real work is done, the more money you make. --Hans Von Miehaelis

Credit: what people use to pay for, tomorrow, what they could not afford to buy today, while still paying for what they bought yesterday. --Unknown

Money: When anyone says 'It's not the money but the principle of the thing -- it's the money. --Unknown

Never ask of money spent / Where the spender thinks it went. --Unknown

A society's economic growth is directly correlated with the level of anxiety in its members. --Andrew Bard Schmookler

We log to infinity because we need everything that's out there. It's ours, it's out there, and we need it all. Now. --Harry Merlo, President Louisiana-Pacific

I shop therefore I am...
Shop till you drop...
Nope. If we don't need it, it isn't a bargain.

Too many people spend money they haven't earned, to buy things they don't want, to impress people they don't like. --Will Rogers

Few rich men own their property. Their property owns them. --Robert G. Ingersoll

The only thing wealth does for some people is to make them worry about losing it. --Antoine de Rivarol

Poor and content is rich and rich enough. --William Shakespeare

7-Q2756 [also ref. 3604]
The price of anything is the amount of life you pay for it. --Henry David Thoreau

7-Q2811 [also ref. 3152]
A man is rich in proportion to the number of things which he can afford to let alone. --Thoreau

The War has indeed been a trying hour for the Republic, but I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. As a result of the war, corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed. --Abraham Lincoln

And he gave it for his opinion... that whoever could make two ear of corn, or two blades of grass, to grow upon a spot where only one grew before, would deserve better of mankind, and do more essential service to his country, than the whole race of politicians put together. --Jonathan Swift

Whenever there are in any country uncultivated land and unemployed poor, it is clear that the laws of property have been so far extended as to violate natural right. The Earth is given as common stock for men to labor and live on... The small landowners are the most precious part of the State. --Thomas Jefferson

There can be nothing sacred in something that has a price. --E. F. Schumacher

To test the worth of a man's religion, do business with him. --Bishop John Lancaster Spaulding

The profit centers have been sucked out of rural places to far off corporate centers like a Wal-Mart store. --A Home Like This

Our current economic system does not factor in the needs of future generations. Indeed, Karl Rabago, Commissioner of the Public Utility Commission of Texas, pointed out that one economist calculated both the cost to preserve the planet's natural resources and the net worth of those resources by traditional economic reckoning and concluded that the world isn't worth saving. --Energy Ideas

We are in the middle of a titanic clash between two ways of seeing the world. One assumes that technology and maximum economic growth will resolve the problems of the world, that continuation of twentieth-century emphases is viable.

The other believes that we need new goals. It argues that only a concentration on social cohesion, ecological integrity, effective decision-making, and the quality of life can prevent massive disasters. -- Robert Theobald

What we need today is not a globalization of the economy but globalization of spirit. -- Emerging Wisdom of the 21st Century

Return to Table of Contents

8. Media

Media Literacy
Advertising, Marketing
Public Relations
Alternative Entertainment
TV, Video Games, Movies
Books, Magazines, Radio

#100's | #1000's | #2000's | #3000's | #4000's | #5000's

Anyone who tills the land will have plenty of bread, but one who follows worthless pursuits will have plenty of poverty. --Proverbs 28:19

We have twin four-year-old girls and a two-year-old girl. We took the TV out of daily life when the twins were about 2 1/4. [We] say "We've just got too many fun things to do to watch TV."

We are lucky in that we are a part of a very supportive community -- a Waldorf school. The school literature specifically states that TV is developmentally inappropriate for young children and that it's use is strongly discouraged. Also, the children are asked to wear "simple" clothes to school (i.e. no logos, characters, etc.) which makes a big difference.

To our family, the single most important thing we are doing to mitigate the commercial culture's effect on our kids is to simply NOT give them everything. We focus on talking about how we buy what we need, not what we want in the moment. The recipe for a nightmare child: Give them everything the ask for. Then they will expect everything to be handed to them every time. Not just now, but in the future as adults. Those are the children who will be unable to weather a storm weather it comes from commercial culture or personal relationships. I want my kids to have an inner strength, which comes only from using those muscles.

I grew up in the 70s with a lot of TV etc. I can STILL see some of those first MTV videos in my head. Pretty scary. I hope my kids don't have to put up with other people's images imprinted on their brains.

Giving kids the strength to say no. --Jennifer S. Chance (excerpted)

After all, the whole force of urban-industrialism upon our tastes is to convince us that artificiality is not only inevitable, but better -- perhaps finally to shut the real and the original out of awareness entirely. --Theodore Roszak

Your living room is the factory... the product being manufactured is you. --Culture Jam

The Evolution of Marketing

Marketing: selling society on an ever-expanding horizon of products and services.
Social Marketing: selling society on a new set of ideas, lifestyles, philosophies and worldviews.
Negamarketing: urging society to consume less electricity, gasoline, energy, materials.
Demarketing: unselling the consumer society; turning the incredible power of marketing against itself. --Culture Jam

Why do nine out of ten women feel dissatisfied with some aspect of their own bodies? The beauty industry is the beast. --Culture Jam

Advertising serves not so much to advertise products as to promote consumption as a way of life. It 'educates' the masses into an unappeasable appetite not only for goods but for new experiences and personal fulfillment. --Christopher Lasch

Discourse on virtue and they pass by in droves; whistle and dance the shimmy, and you've got an audience. --Diogenes of Sinope

You have to learn to read between the lies. --Jim Hightower

Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. And inside of a dog, it's too dark to read. --Groucho Marx

Shoot first, and whatever you hit, call it the target. --Ashleigh Brilliant

Advertising is the rattling of a stick inside a swill bucket. --George Orwell

Then: Build a better mouse trap and the world will beat a path to your door.
Now: Build yet another mouse trap and the media will beat you over the head to buy it. --Anony-mouse

If a man watches three football games in a row, he should be declared legally dead. --Erma Bombeck

I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set I go into the other room and read a book. --Groucho Marx

The man who doesn't read good books has no advantage over the man who reads nothing at all. --Mark Twain

Employ your time in improving yourself by other people's writings, so you shall come easily by what others have labored hard for. --Socrates

Commercialism: Ubiquitous product marketing that leads to a preoccupation with individual consumption to the detriment of oneself and society. --Center for the Study of Commercialism

This is the secret of propaganda: Those who are to be persuaded by it should be completely immersed in the ideas of the propaganda, without ever noticing that they are being immersed in it. --Joseph Goebbels, Hitler's Minister of Propaganda

To return to higher standards of living we must abandon the false prophets and seek new leaders of our own choosing. --Franklin Delano Roosevelt

I feel more voluntary about my pleasures and pains than the average American who has his needs dictated by Madison Avenue (my projections, of course). I feel sustained, excited, and constantly growing in my spiritual and intellectual pursuits. --Duane Elgin

Advertising serves not so much to advertise products as to promote consumption as a way of life. It 'educates' the masses into an unappeasable appetite not only for goods but for new experiences and personal fulfillment. --Christopher Lasch
Turn Off TV
Turn On Life
--bumper sticker

Break Free of TV
--bumper sticker

Telivison Promots Iliteracy
--bumper sticker

Return to Table of Contents

9. Sustenance

Recipes (from Developing Countries)
Personal Choices
Change, Responsibility
Success, Happiness
Work, Stress & Health
Sabbath, Leisure
Risk, nonconformity

#100's | #1000's | #2000's | #3000's | #4000's | #5000's

We need to remember that we are all created creative and can invent new scenarios as frequently as they are needed. --Maya Angelou

Your creativity is waiting for you like a dancing partner. --Barbara Sher

I think the creative process is not about creating something else; it's about the process itself creating who I am. --Mayumi Oda

My work is giving space -- learning of its way and being in its service at the same time. We each have responsibility to express ourselves. And in this expression is the key to our healing. --Gabrielle Roth

What you love is a sign from your higher self of what you are to do. --Sanaya Roman

Making art is a rite of initiation. People change their souls. --Julia Cameron

Be yourself. The world worships the original. --Jean Cocteau

Creativity can be described as letting go of certainties. --Gail Sheehy

Just don't give up trying to do what you really want to do. Where there is love and inspiration, I don't think you can go wrong. --Ella Fitzgerald

And the trouble is, if you don't risk anything, you risk even more. --Erica Jong

Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. --Helen Keller

A mistake is simply another way of doing things. --Katherine Graham

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. --An�is Nin

The full life is filled with vulnerability, not defense. You face whatever feeling there is. --Virginia Satir

The fullness of life is in the hazards of life. --Edith Hamilton

All that is necessary to break the spell of inertia and frustration is this: Act as if it were impossible to fail. --Dorthea Brande

It is easier to live through someone else than to become complete yourself. --Betty Friedan

I have no regrets. I wouldn't have lived my life the way I did if I was going to worry about what other people were going to say. --Ingrid Bergman

Grab the broom of anger and drive off the beast of fear. --Zora Neale

You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, 'I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.' You must do the thing you think you cannot do. --Eleanor Roosevelt

Some of us just go along until that marvelous day people stop intimidating us -- or should I say we refuse to let them intimidate us? --Peggy Lee

Your playing small serves no one. --Marianne Williamson

Life's ups and downs provide windows of opportunity to determine your values and goals. Think of using all obstacles as stepping stones to build the life you want. --Marsha Sinetar

I don't want life to imitate art. I want life to be art. --Carrie Fisher

Life's challenges are not supposed to paralyze you, they're supposed to help you discover who you are. --Bernice Johnson Reagon

One of the secrets of a happy life is continuous small treats. --Iris Murdoch

Life is change. Growth is optional. Choose wisely. --Karen Kaiser Clark

We all live in suspense from day to day; in other words, you are the hero of your own story. --Mary McCarthy

You are not making the change because you are a bad person and you are doing it wrong. You make changes because you love yourself and you want to improve the quality of your life. --Louise Hay

Synchronicity holds the promise that if we will change within, the patterns in our outer life will change also. --Jean Shinoda

You take your life into your own hands, and what happens? A terrible thing: no one to blame. --Erica Jong

Courage is the power to let go of the familiar. --Mary Byrant

Act boldly and unseen forces will come to your aid. --Dorothea Brande

If you play it safe in life, you've decided that you don't want to grow anymore. --Shirley Hufstedler

That's the risk you take if you change: that people you've been involved with won't like the new you. But other people who do will come along. --Lisa Alther

Trouble is the common denominator of living. It is the great equalizer. --Ann Landers

Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world. --Arthur Schopenhauer

Dare to be naive. --Buckminster Fuller

I believe it to be perfectly possible for an individual to adopt the way of life of the future without having to wait for others to do so. --Mohandas K. Gandhi

Most people eat as if they were fattening themselves for market. --Edgar Watson Howe

I am only one; but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something. I will not refuse to do the something I can do. --Helen Keller

Find a need and fill it. --Ruth Stafford Peale

The great thing in this world is not so much where we are, but in what direction we are moving. --Oliver Wendell Holmes

If people are highly successful in their professions they lose their sense. Sight goes. They have no time to look at pictures. Sound goes. They have no time to listen to music. Speech goes. They have no time for conversation. Humanity goes. Money making becomes so important that they must work by night as well as by day. Health goes. And so competitive do they become that they will not share their work with others though they have more themselves. What then remains of a human being who has lost sight, sound, and sense of proportion? Only a cripple in a cave. --Virginia Woolf

To be rooted is perhaps the most important and least recognized need of the human soul -- Simone Weill

Down deep in every human soul is a hidden longing, impulse, and ambition to do something fine and enduring. If you are willing, great things are possible to you. --Grenville Kleiser

Our own life is the instrument with which we experiment with Truth. --Thich Nhat Hanh

We are the ones we've been waiting for. --June Jordan

9-Q1008 [Also ref. 0834]
A good heart is better than all the heads in the world. --Edward Lytton

The important thing is to be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could be. --Charles DuBois

The most terrifying thing is to accept oneself completely. --Carl Jung

The only way things will happen is if people get over the notion that they must see immediate success. If they get over that notion and persist, then they will see things happen before they even realize it. --Howard Zinn

There is a force, a quickness that is translated through you into action. If you block it, the world will not have it... --Martha Graham

Trust in what you love, continue to do it, and it will take you where you need to go. --Natalie Goldberg

9-Q1035 (also ref. 0755)
Be the change you want to see in the world. --Gandhi

Deep within man dwells slumbering powers; powers that would astonish him, that he never dreamed of possessing; forces that would revolutionize his life if aroused and put into action. --Orison Swett Marden

Only those who risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go. --T.S. Eliot

Most people see what is, and never see what can be. --Albert Einstein

When I rise up, let me rise up joyful like a bird. When I fall, let me fall without regret like a leaf. --Wendell Berry

The human experience can almost be summed up in the observation that, whereas all decisions are of the past, all decisions are about the future. The image of the future, therefore, is the key to all choice-oriented behavior. The character and quality of the images of the future which prevail in a society is therefore the most important clue to its overall dynamics. --Kenneth E. Boulding (1973)

Whenever you find you are on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect. --Mark Twain

Better is a dinner of vegetables where love is than a fatted ox and hatred with it. --Proverbs 15:17

A cheerful heart has a continual feast. --Proverbs 15:15

Few of us are aware that the act of eating can be a powerful statement of commitment to our own well-being, and at the same time the creation of a healthier habitat. Your health, happiness, and the future of life on Earth are rarely so much in your own hands as when you sit down to eat. --John Robbins

To be a vegetarian is to disagree - to disagree with the course of things today. Starvation, world hunger, cruelty, waste, wars - we must make a statement against these things. Vegetarianism is my statement. --Isaac Bashevis Singer

It stands to reason that a loving God or your most loving self would be interested in your overall welfare and the welfare of all people, all forms of life and of an Earth so nurturing to us that many call her mother. Because love encompasses everything, nothing is unimportant, including tonight's dinner menu. Think about it for a minute: if you were pure Love, the loving Parent of all life, how would you want people to nourish themselves in a way that: is generous, delicious, and aesthetically pleasing; promotes high level health as well as normal weight; is economical and provides plenty for everybody; respects all life; is environmentally sustainable. --Victoria Moran

Loving God, our food is connected so vitally to so many areas of our lives: to our communities, to our spirituality, to our celebrations, to our health. Surely this is a sign of your presence among us, you "in whom we live and move and have our being." Be with us now and throughout our time together. Amen. --Food, Faith and Sustainability

Eaters must understand that eating takes place inescapably in the world, that it is inescapably an agricultural act, and that how we eat determines, to a considerable extent, how the world is used. --Wendell Berry

Find the shortest, simplest way between the Earth, the hands and the mouth. --Lanza del Vasto

Our food, our sustenance, can not come to us but that others die. The pleasures of eating mindfully, however, come in part through knowing how the 'other' lived and died and whether or not the gift of our continued life has caused unnecessary harm. --Food, Faith and Sustainability

Pounds of grain and soy used to produce 1 pound of food from:
--Food, Faith and Sustainability

In California, the number of gallons of water needed to produce 1 edible pound of:
--Food, Faith and Sustainability

Dietary Guidelines for Americans

Eat a variety of foods.
Maintain healthy weight.
Choose a diet low in fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol.
Choose a diet with plenty of vegetables, fruits, and grain products.
Use sugars only in moderation.
Use salt and sodium only in moderation.
If you drink alcoholic beverages, do so in moderation.
--Green Kitchen Handbook

Eight Steps to the New Green Diet

1. Eat organic food.
2. Eat locally grown food.
3. Eat seasonal food.
4. Eat a variety of food.
5. Eat low on the food chain.
6. Eat whole food with adequate fiber.
7. Avoid processed food.
8. Reduce packaging.
--Green Kitchen Handbook

I found that when I started to eat wild foods I became more observant of the natural cycles around me. When utilizing wild foods I automatically become more part of the natural process, and start eating with the seasons. Foraging becomes so much fun from season to season. I came to love a particular watercress patch in the spring, when I lived in Pennsylvania, and I looked forward to the hickory nuts in the fall. --Green Kitchen Handbook

If you find a fullness that fits, it's because the empty kept you looking. --David Wilcox

Most of us spend our lives as if we had another one in the bank. --Ben Irwin

Try not to become a man of success but rather to become a man of value. --Albert Einstein

It is the nature of extreme self-lovers, as they will set a house on fire, and it were but to roast an egg. --Francis Bacon

Industry, perseverance and frugality make fortune yield. --Benjamin Franklin

Make yourself as happy as possible, and try to make those happy whose lives come in touch with yours. But to attempt to right the wrongs and cease the sufferings of the world in general is a waste of effort. --James Weldon Johnson

In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility. --Eleanor Roosevelt

Question Your Paradigms, your perceptions of reality. --Dan Robinson

Two roads diverged in a wood, and
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
--Robert Frost

Success is getting what you want; Happiness is wanting what you get.
--Ashleigh Brilliant
I am one. I cannot do everything -- but I can do something. I will do what I can. --Attributed to Helen Keller

Ready, fire, aim. Do it! Make it happen! Action counts. No one ever sat their way to success. --Tom Peters

Remember your motivations. How many people would drive Cadillacs if no one looked when they drove by? --Unknown

Waiting for the right time may work, or it may not. Consider beginning NOW. Start where you are, do what you can, use the gifts you have. --Unknown

Well done is better than well said. --Ben Franklin

The trick is to find work that you would do for free if life afforded you that opportunity. --Michael Levine

Your work is to discover your work, and then, with all your heart, to give yourself to it. --Buddha

Nothing is work, unless you'd rather be doing something else. --George Halas

The biggest mistake you can make is believing that you work for someone else. --Unknown

We may abrogate our responsibilities at any time, but collectively and individually we are always responsible - always. No excuses will suffice or be accepted by those who inherit our legacy. --Michael Katakis

Those who rise to the top are those who can control their hair. --Cecile Andrews

Those who risk nothing risk much more. --Proverb

People waste more time waiting for someone to take charge of their lives than they do in any other pursuit. --Gloria Steinem

Faced with having to change our views or prove that there is no need to do so, most of us immediately get busy on the proof. --John Kenneth Galbraith

The best test of the quality of a civilization is the quality of its leisure. --Irwin Edman

Millions long for immortality who don't know what to do on a rainy Sunday afternoon. --Susan Ertz

The end of labor is to gain leisure. --Aristotle

One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one's work is terribly important. --Bertrand Russell

He worked like hell in the country so he could live in the city, where he worked like hell so he could live in the country. --Don Marquis

By working faithfully eight hours a day you may eventually get to be a boss and work twelve hours a day. --Robert Frost

America has become so tense and nervous it has been years since I've seen anyone sleep in church -- and that is a sad situation. --Norman Vincent Peale

Hard work is the soundest investment. It provides a neat security for your widow's next husband. --Unknown

The first half of life consists of the capacity to enjoy without the chance; the last half consists of the chance without the capacity. --Mark Twain

All paid jobs absorb and degrade the mind. --Aristotle

The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well. --Ralph Waldo Emerson

In order to live free and happily, you must sacrifice boredom. It is not always an easy sacrifice. --Richard Bach

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy - and Jill a wealthy widow. --Evan Esar

In order to get to the fruit of the tree, you have to go out on a limb. --Shirley Maclaine

My inferiority complexes aren't as good as yours. --Unknown

Leisure may prove to be a curse rather than a blessing, unless education teaches a flippant world leisure is not a synonym for entertainment. --William J. Bogan

Those who do not find time for exercise will have to find time for illness. --Unknown

Great minds have purposes, others have wishes. --Washington Irving

It isn't the experience of today that drives men mad. It is the remorse for something that happened yesterday, and the dread of what tomorrow may disclose. --Robert Jones Burdette

We have no more right to consume happiness without producing it, than to consume wealth without producing it. --George Bernard Shaw

Once in a while you have to take a break and visit yourself. --Audrey Giorgi

One of the greatest necessities in America is to discover creative solitude. --Carl Sandburg

Knowing others is wisdom, knowing yourself is Enlightenment. --Lao-tzu

A happy heart is better than a full purse. --Italian Proverb

You only live once. But if you work it right, once is enough. --Fred Allen

If I am incapable of washing dishes joyfully, if I want to finish them quickly so I can go and have dessert, I will be equally incapable of enjoying my dessert. With the fork in my hand, I will be thinking about what to do next, and the texture and flavor of the dessert, together with the pleasure of eating it, will be lost. I will always be dragged into the future, never able to live in the present moment. --Thich Nhat Hanh

Never eat more than you can lift. --Miss Piggy

He who sleeps in continual noise is awakened by silence. --William Dean Howells

The difficulty in life is in the choice. --George Moore

On the whole, the happiest people seem to be those who have no particular cause for being happy except that they are so. --William R. Inge

In putting off what one has to do, one runs the risk of never being able to do it. --Charles-Pierre Baudelaire

Forget mistakes. Forget failures. Forget everything except what you're going to do now and do it. Today is your lucky day. --Alfred Sloan

One must eat to live, and not live to eat. --Jean-Baptist Poquelin Moliere

Health is the thing that makes you feel that now is the best time of the year. --Franklin P. Adams

The preservation of health is a duty. Few seem conscious that there is such a thing as physical morality. --Herbert Spencer

Ours is an excessively conscious age. We know so much, we feel so little. --D. H. Lawrence

We must have a pure, honest, and warm-hearted motivation, and on top of that, determination, optimism, hope, and the ability not to be discouraged. The whole of humanity depends on this motivation. --Dalai Lama

Wholeness invokes balance. --Mary Jane Ryan

Seek above all for a game worth playing. Play as if your life and sanity depend on it, because they do! --Robert de Ropp

Healing is embracing what is most feared; healing is opening what has been closed, softening what has hardened into obstruction, healing is learning to trust life. --Jeanne Achterberg

I'd rather be a failure at something I enjoy than a success at something I hate! --George Burns

I am not bound to win but I am bound to be true. I am not bound to succeed but I am bound to live up to what light I have. --Abraham Lincoln

Inspiration follows aspiration. --Rabindranath Tagore

If you pay attention at every moment, you form a new relationship to time. In some magical way, by slowing down, you become more efficient, productive, and energetic, focusing without distraction directly on the task in front of you. Not only do you become immersed in the moment, you become that moment. --Michael Ray

Awareness in itself is healing. --Fritz Perls

It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters in the end. --Ursula K. LeGuin

Our truest life is when we are in our dreams awake! --Henry David Thoreau

For those who are awake, the cosmos is One. --Herakleitos

Our first teacher is our own heart. --Cheyenne saying

You can't get there from 'not here.' --Richard Moon

The salvation of the world lies in the human heart. --Vaclav Havel

The only way out is through. --Robert Frost

Just to be is a blessing. Just to live is holy. --Rabbi Abraham Heschel

Be lamps unto yourselves; be your own confidence. Hold truth within yourselves. --Buddha

However young, the seeker who sets out upon the way shines bright over the world. Both day and night the person who is awake shines in the radiance of the spirit. Meditate. Live purely. Be quiet. Do your work, with mastery. Like the moon, Come out from behind the clouds! Shine. --The Buddha

There are three kinds of friends in the world. An ordinary person sees only who you are; for that you don't need a friend. Then there's a friend who sees in you what you can be. And then there's the real holy Friend, and the presence of this Friend you are already. --Reb Shlomo Carlebach

In human relationships, as mutual love deepens, there comes a time when two friends convey their exchanges without words. They can sit in silence sharing an experience or simply enjoying each other's presence without saying anything. --Father Thomas Keating

I must conquer my loneliness alone. I must be happy with myself, or I have nothing to offer. Two halves have little choice but to join; and yes, they do make a whole. But two wholes when they coincide. That is beauty. That is love. --Lillian Darr

No one else can tell you what your life's work is, but it's important that you find it. There is a part of you that knows - affirm that part. --Willis W. Harman

The minute you begin to do what you really want to do, it's really a different kind of life. --Buckminster Fuller

You don't get to choose how you're going to die or when. You can only decide how you're going to live. --Joan Baez

Most are engaged in business in the greater part of their lives, because the soul abhors a vacuum and they have not discovered continuous employment for man's nobler faculties. --Henry David Thoreau

Love is that flame that once kindled burns everything, and only the mystery and the journey remain. --Angeles Arrien

As human beings, our greatness lies not so much in being able to remake the world... as in being able to remake ourselves. --Mahatma Gandhi

Everything we do - our discipline, effort, meditation, livelihood, and every single thing we do from the moment we're born until the moment we die - we can use to help us to realize our unity and our completeness with all things. --Ane Pema Chodren

There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle. --Albert Einstein

We become victims of the great disease of technological society - meaninglessness. --Doris Janzen Longacre

Working because you want to is the best sort of play. --Robert Heinlein

Life is occupied both in perpetuating itself and in surpassing itself: if all it does is maintain itself, then living is only not dying. --Simone de Beauvoir

If we do not change our direction, we are likely to end up where we are headed. --Ancient Chinese Proverb

Gratitude Evaporates Frustration. --Joel Rude

Whatever you can do or dream you can do -- begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now. --Goethe

The most common regret of the terminally ill is, I made a living, but I never really lived. --Elizabeth K�bler Ross

A first-rate soup is more creative than a second-rate painting. --Abraham Maslow

Everything I ever did that was worthwhile in my life, I always caught hell for. --Former Chief Justice Earl Warren

When work is a pleasure, life is a joy! When work is a duty, life is slavery. --Maxim Gorky

The one quality people share is that they know how to express their uniqueness, they sing their own song. --Salli Rasberry

Creativity is the best antidote to loneliness. --Gary Krane

What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us. --Oliver Wendell Holmes

Happiness is not a destination. It is the attitude with which you choose to travel. --Yogi Arit Desal

The greatest part of our happiness and misery depends on our dispositions and not our circumstances. --Martha Washington

Your body is the ground metaphor of your life, the expression of your existence. It is your Bible, your encyclopedia, your life story. Everything that happens to you is stored and reflected in your body. Your body knows; your body tells. The relationship of your self to your body is indivisible, inescapable, unavoidable. In the marriage of flesh and spirit, divorce is impossible. --Gabrielle Roth

Lasting change happens when people see for themselves that a different way of life is more fulfilling than their present one. --Eknath Easwaran

Eating with the fullest pleasure - pleasure, that is, that does not depend on ignorance - is perhaps the profoundest enactment of our connection with the world. In this pleasure we experience and celebrate our dependence and our gratitude, for we are living from mystery, from creatures we did not make and powers we cannot comprehend. --Wendell Berry

There is an amazing thing that happens when you begin to simplify your life: a lot of those once valued but restricting beliefs... start to have less influence on you. You begin to realize it's okay to relax. And to do nothing. And even to go to bed early just for the ease of it. --Elaine St. James

There are few ideas in the world of thought which contain so much spiritual power as the idea of the Sabbath. Aeons hence, when of many of our cherished theories only shreds will remain, that cosmic tapestry will continue to shine. --Abraham J. Heschel

9-Q4902 Watch for the 12 warning signs of good health

1. Regular flare-ups of a supportive network of friends and family.
2. Chronic positive expectations
3. Repeated episodes of gratitude and generosity
4. Increased appetite for physical activity
5. Marked tendency to identify and express feelings
6. Compulsion to contribute to society
7. Lingering sensitivity to the feelings of others
8. Habitual behavior related to seeking new challenges
9. Craving for peak experiences
10. Tendency to adapt to changing conditions
11. Feelings of spiritual involvement
12. Persistent sense of humor
-- Utne Reader Almanac

The meaning of the Sabbath is to celebrate time rather than space. Six days a week we live under the tyranny of things of space; on the Sabbath we try to become attuned to holiness in time. It is a day on which we are called upon to share in what is eternal in time, to turn from the results of creation to the mystery of creation; from the world of creation to the creation of the world. --Abraham Heschel

The Sabbath is not for the sake of the weekdays; the weekdays are for the sake of Sabbath. It is not an interlude but the climax of living. --Abraham Heschel

The work on weekdays and the rest on the seventh day are correlated. The Sabbath is the inspirer, the other days the inspired. --Abraham Heschel

9-Q5145 [also ref. 2006 & 2322]
To laugh often and love much; to win the respect of intelligent persons and the affection of children, to earn the approbation of honest critics; to appreciate beauty; to give of one's self, to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to have played and laughed with enthusiasm and sung with exultation; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived--that is to have succeeded. -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Bitterness only consumes the vessel that contains it. --Rubin "Hurricane" Carter

Genius is 10% inspiration and 90% perspiration. --Thomas A. Edison

Imagination is more important than knowledge, for knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world. --Albert Einstein

Return to Table of Contents

10. Faith, Spirituality

Personal prayer
Biblical characters & symbols

#100's | #1000's | #2000's | #3000's | #4000's | #5000's

God whispers in our pleasures but shouts in our pain. --C. S. Lewis

There is this mysterious energy that wants us to keep growing. --Michelle Cassou

When you come to the edge of all the light you know, and are about to step off into the darkness of the unknown, faith is knowing one of two things will happen: There will be something solid to stand on, or you will be taught how to fly. --Barbara Winter

Only when one is connected to one's inner core is one connected to others. And, for me, the core, the inner spring, can best be re-found through solitude. --Anne Morrow Lindberg

Be still and know that I am God! --Psalm 46:10. Take a few minutes each day for meditation and prayer, with or without devotional material. Be silent, be still, be open to what God may be telling you.

But seek first God's kingdom and God's righteousness and all these thing will be given to you as well. --Matthew 6:33.

God gives us strength enough, and sense enough, for every thing he wants us to do. --John Ruskin

We are not sent into world to do anything into which we cannot put our hearts. --John Ruskin

If we do not radiate the light of Christ around us, the sense of the darkness that prevails in the world will increase. --Mother Teresa

We can now recognize that the fate of the soul is the fate of the social order; that if the spirit within us withers, so too will all the world we build about us. --Theodore Roszak

Half an hour's meditation is essential except when you are very busy. Then a full hour is needed. --Francis de Sales

We must accept finite disappointment, but we must never lose infinite hope. --Martin Luther King, Jr.

Everything that is done in the world is done by hope. --Martin Luther King, Jr.

The quintessential revolution is that of spirit. Without this, the forces which produce the inequalities of the old order will continue to operate. --Aung San Suu Kyi

10-Q1303 [also ref. 3801]
It's all a question of story. We are in trouble just now because we do not have a good story. We are in between stories. The old story, the account of how we fit into it, is no longer effective. Yet we have not learned the new story. --Thomas Berry

Nothing is more dangerous to the advancement of God's kingdom than a dead religion, and that is just what Christianity has become. Do you not realize that it is possible to kill Christ with such Christianity? With our Bibles and our prayers? With our satisfaction and self-love? --Christoph Blumhardt

Albert Einstein was asked one day by a friend 'Do you believe that absolutely everything can be expressed scientifically?' 'Yes, it would be possible,' he replied, 'but it would make no sense. It would be description without meaning -- as if you described a Beethoven symphony as a variation in wave pressure.' --Ronald W. Clark

Forgiveness is not an occasional act. It is a permanent attitude. --Martin Luther King, Jr.

True Godliness doesn't turn men out of the world, but enables them to live better in it, and excites their endeavors to mend it. --William Penn (1644-1718)

What the theology of justification by faith meant for a church in need of reformation in the early 16th century is precisely what the theology of nature must mean for a church in need of reformation in the 21st century. --Paul H. Santmire

By ethical conduct toward all creatures, we enter into a spiritual relationship with the universe. --Albert Schweitzer

Some people, in order to discover God, read books. But there is a great book: the very appearance of created things. Look above you! Look below you! Read it. God, whom you want to discover, never wrote that book with ink. Instead He set before your eyes the things that he had made. Can you ask for a louder voice than that? --St. Augustine of Hippo (354-430)

What is a charitable heart? It is a heart burning with a loving charity for the whole of creation, for men, for the birds, for the beasts... for all creatures. He who has such a heart cannot see or call to mind a creature without his eyes being filled with tears by reason of the immense compassion which seizes his heart; a heart which is so softened and can no longer bear to hear of any suffering, even the smallest pain, being inflicted upon any creature. He will pray even for the lizards and the reptiles, moved by the infinite pity which reigns in the heart of those who are becoming united with God. --St. Isaac the Syrian (685? - 758?)

Listen, God loves everything you love, and a mess of stuff you don't. --Alice Walker, The Color Purple

The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult and left untried. --G. K. Chesterton

I've come to bring you stuff... stuff abundantly. --The Overconsumer's Bible

The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world's deep hunger meet. --Frederick Buechner.

To choose what is difficult all one's days as if it were easy. That is faith. --W. H. Auden

We know that love, compassion, nonviolence, wisdom, and truths are cultivated in the quiet. --Journey into Freedom

Materialism is not fundamentally an economic problem, but a cultural one... a spiritual issue. It runs to the depths of our souls, and, for this reason, needs to be understood less in terms of budgets or fiscal cycles and more in terms of where we locate the sacred, of where we search for meaning and transcendence, and of how we think about justice, equality, and the future of our world. --Robert Wuthnow

An inability to stay quiet... is one of the most conspicuous failings of mankind. --Walter Bagehot

The winds of grace are always blowing, but it is you that must raise your sails. --Rabindranath Tagore

Mindfulness is the practice of aiming your attention, moment to moment, in the direction of your purpose. It is called mindfulness because you have to keep your purpose in mind as you watch your attention. Then, whenever you notice that your aim has drifted off, you calmly realign it. --Frank Andrews

Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men. Our hope for creative living lies in our ability to reestablish the spiritual needs of our lives in personal character and social justice. Without this spiritual and moral reawakening we shall destroy ourselves in the misuse of our own instruments. --Martin Luther King, Jr.

God, Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can. And the wisdom to know the difference. --Reinhold Niebuhr (also attributed to St. Francis of Assisi)

You are the light of the world. --Jesus

There comes a time in the spiritual journey when you start making choices from a very different place... And if a choice lines up so that it supports truth, health, happiness, wisdom, and love, it's the right choice. --Angeles Arrien

People living a practical life, who are very unselfish, very dedicated, probably experience God deeply without knowing it or seeing it. Because they go out of themselves and into the world around them in the people they are serving, they encounter this absolute, this One, though they may not name it explicitly that way. I believe that religious experience is far more common than people imagine it. They think only monks and nuns have it, but I think everybody is open to it in some way and most people get glimpses of it. --Father Bede Griffiths

The best reason for listening to and learning from the poor is that this is one way God is revealed to us. --Doris Janzen Longacre

An authentic spirituality does not cater to culture; it calls culture to accountability. --Joan Chittister, OSB

God save us from the christs we create in our image. --Bryan Sirchio

For when one considers the universe, can anyone be so simple-minded as not to believe that the Divine is present in everything, pervading, embracing and penetrating it? --Gregory of Nyssa

God is the poetic genius in each of us. --William Blake

If we want sincere harmony, peace and joy in our lives, we can have them, but we must be willing to do the work. We must make maintaining an awareness of our spiritual natures first in our lives. Our inner world is the architect of our external world. We don't lose faith in the goodness of life because we become angry and depressed. We become angry and depressed because we lose faith in the goodness of life. --Susan L. Taylor

Silence of the heart is necessary so you can hear God everywhere - in the closing of the door, in the person who needs you, in the birds that sing, in the flowers, in the animals. --Mother Teresa

That is God's call to us - simply to be people who are content to live close to him and to renew the kind of life in which the closeness is felt and experienced. --Thomas Merton

A devout life does bring wealth. But it's the rich simplicity of being yourself before God. --1 Timothy 6:6

When the heart is pure and simple it cannot help loving, because it has discovered the source of love which is God. --St. John M. Vianney

Seek God in the simplicity of your heart. --Saint Bernard

The first peace, which is the most important, is that which comes within the souls of people when they realize their relationship, their oneness, with universe and all its powers, and when they realize that at the center of the universe dwells the Great Spirit, and that this center is really everywhere, it is within each of us. -- Black Elk

The trouble with some of us is that we have been inoculated with small does of Christianity, which keeps us from catching the real thing. --Leslie Dixon Weatherhead

10-Q5173 The Golden Rule:

* Judaism: What is hateful to you, do not do to others. This is the entire Law; all the rest is commentary.
* Christianity: In everything do to others as you would have them do to you, for this is the law and the prophets.
* Islam: No one of you is a believer until they desire for their brother or sister that which they desire for themselves.
* Buddhism: Hurt not others with that which pains yourself.
* Hinduism: This is the sum of duty: do nothing to others which if done to you would cause you pain.

NOTE: See MAIN page for Sources/Credits.

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©Creative Commons (originally ©2001 Alternatives for Simple Living)

Collection compiled, edited and prepared by Gerald and Peter Iversen.

ALTERNATIVES for Simple Living, 1973-2011
Gerald Iversen, Alternatives' National Coordinator, 1995-2007
Founder, 2011, Simple Living Works!

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