Thursday, April 23, 2009

All or Nothing

As I try to finish up packing and have boxes stacked all over the place but at least nearly empty closets, I think about the story I heard back in college of Diogenese of Sinope who was a Cynic and thought we needed almost no worldly possession. He supposedly lived in a large tub with few other possessions, perhaps happily and by choice. The story I remember is that the young Alexander sought out the old philosopher asked, "What can I do for you?" Diogenese said "Stand out of my sun." Alexander moved aside and muttered, "If I were not Alexander I would wish to be Diogenese." All or nothing appeals to certain kinds of people.

At the moment I'm thinking there would be satisfaction in having -- well, not nothing -- but very little. It IS possible but in society as it is and with all I've experienced, I know that all or nothing really would not be satisfing to me. But perhaps with this move I'm effecting, I will gain a bit more balance. Lots of things, most especially previously read books, are disappearing from my surroundings. I will live a bit simpler and perhaps strive to live more simply going forward. That, in fact, seems a part of the natural progression of lives as they are lived in our society. Older people move to smaller homes, with less busy work keeping up their former lives. Feels right to me. Let a little more Diogenese into my life.

1 comment:

Helen Conway said...

Don't you think that we hold on to things to deal with fear - like how dreadful would it be if we had no money and no new books so we hold on to old stuff in case we need them?In relaity it is not going to happen and if it did there is always a library!