Here’s another article from a Zen blog that’s more about a minimal lifestyle than aesthetics.
As a designer who loves minimal aesthetics, the process of pealing away to the bare essentials is always an interesting read. Let’s read more about the ultimate minimalist, Ghandi
1. Accumulate little
Gandhi believed in possessing little except the clothes he wore and some utensils for cooking and eating. He used to give away or auction any gift that was ever given to him.
It may not be possible these days for us to get down to less than ten possessions like Gandhi did, but start cutting down to bare basics. Recycle, give things away, or auction your unwanted possessions.
We tend to spend a lot of time and energy looking after our possessions. By having fewer things to possess and look after, your life naturally becomes simpler.
2. Eat simple food
Gandhi never had a problem with being overweight. He followed a strict vegetarian diet and frequently cooked his own simple food, which was locally produced.
He ate this simple food from a small bowl, a reminder to eat moderately, and at the same time he ate mindfully, often accompanied by prayers. So eat simply and moderately.
3. Dress simply.
Gandhi wore simple clothes that conveyed his message.
There is this anecdotal story of the time when Gandhi met the King of Great Britain in London and he wore his simple wrap around cloth. A journalist asked Gandhi, “Mr Gandhi, did you feel under-dressed when you met the King?” Gandhi replied, “The King was wearing enough clothes for both of us!”
Though it may not be practical to weave your own cloth and make your own clothes, you can simplify your life by dressing for comfort, not to impress. A simple hairstyle can shorten your grooming routine. You could even go as far as Gandhi and Leo Babauta and shave your hair off.
4. Lead a simple, stress-free life
Gandhi never got stressed. He meditated daily and spent hours in reflection and prayer.
Though he was a world leader and idolized by millions, he continued to lead a simple life with few distractions and commitments. He would even interrupt his political meetings to go off and play with children.
And despite all his needs being taken care off, Gandhi still insisted on doing his own simple things. He advocated self-sufficiency and simple work. So don’t take life too seriously — remember to take time out to play.
5. Let your life be your message
Though he was a prolific writer and powerful speaker, in private Gandhi spoke very quietly and only when necessary. He was also very punchy and concise in his writing. He preferred to let his life do the talking for him.
By living a simple life, Gandhi was able to devote his life to his chosen higher purpose. He was totally focussed on his commitment to his people and the world. Even if you don’t wish to be another Gandhi, your life will be much simpler and happier by following his life lessons.
“If one has wealth, it does not mean that it should be thrown away and wife and children should be turned out of doors. It simply means that one must give up attachment of these things!” ~Gandhi
note: the author of this article makes a point to “take up the 100 thing challenge and see if you can get down to owning less than 100 or even less than 50 things.” on his list was a “minimalistic desk”.
above: one less desk by heckler design