I have often been asked why I have chosen the path I am currently on. That is, why have I chosen to give up a normal career; a home; stability; etc, all to lead what most consider a vagabond life. Well, I always answer that question with a simple statement: It is complicated, yet not. You see, for me, I have realized where the real joy in my life comes from, or maybe more importantly, where it doesn't come from.
The joy I gain from exploring nature, capturing it with my camera, seeing new and fantastic places and meeting wonderful people, all are worth more to me than the life I had before. Finding ways to give is now way more important to me than finding ways to consume. You see, it is now that I finally feel as if I am living. Not constrained by societies notion of what a life should be, but instead, waking up each day and just being. Out of that comes great and wonderful things, not the least of which is simple and pure happiness. I smile every day, all day. I say hello to everyone I meet, waving to cars and complete strangers. I feel as if the world around me has grown exponentially, when the reality of it is simply that I am NOW, for the first time in my life, seeing the world around me.
I meet people all of the time that can't fathom what this is like. They have no concept of what it means to give up perceived security for absolute insecurity. All the while, not realizing that it is they that live a completely artificial and insecure life. Stress, unhappiness, broken relationships, dependence on material goods and the ever present Ego, all drive their world and their sense of never being able to achieve the happiness they are so desperately searching for.
Coming full circle, back to how do you answer that question, I point you to this site. Here you will find descriptions of others, who like myself, have opted for a different way of life. I encourage you to visit their sites and read their stories. Connect with them and what they are doing and what they are being. Contribute to them if you can. I mean, seriously, most folks spend more money in a day on so many frivolous things. Why not go to one of their sites; click on their 'Donate Now' buttons and simply buy them a cup of coffee. Send them $2.50 (a little more than a normal cup, but hey, PayPal takes a cut) and absolutely make a difference in their lives.
For I garuntee you one thing. If you go and read these stories, and those of others, you can't help but be inspired by what they are doing. It will have a profound affect on you and your life. If nothing else, you will begin to see that each of us really does have a choice about what we do and how we live our lives. We each have a choice that is different than that proposed by the mainstream media. You have a choice to be happy each moment of your life. You see, in the end, all you have to do is make that choice. There is nothing else to it, simply choose to be happy. Right now, for in the end, that is all there is and ever will be, just NOW.
P.S., my Starbucks card is almost empty, so I will gladly take your coffee donations as well; If you like I will even take your peanut butter, oatmeal, raisins, rice, couscous, and lastly dark chocolate bars ....
Peace & Love,