This week's Newsweek has an article by Raina Kelly entitled "Freegan Ride." As Kelly explained, the term freegan is a cross between "free" and "vegan" and a freegan is someone who believes in reducing consumption, recycling and reusing. I can relate to that but the freegan lifestyle is a bit extreme for me.
For a month, Kelly lived the freegan lifestyle, relying on freebies, eating organically and reducing her carbon footprint in our great Earth. Freegans practice dumpster diving, but because of legalities, Kelly didn't do that. Check out the blog she kept called "Freegan Girl."
I'm in agreement we consume too much stuff, I mean, how many sets of dishes, dust-collecting knickknacks and excessive packaging do we need? When I went to Afghanistan last year, it really clicked with me what's important in life and prompted me to write this article on being a responsible tourist.
I also think how much we have here in the U.S. and how little "stuff" other places of the world have, yet, they seem happy. We take for granted the simplest things, like soap and in Kelly's article, she mentions how the cost a beauty bar of soap could feed a small family in a third-world country. What are we lacking that we need to hoard stuff to make us happy and content? I wonder if the slow down in the economy is going to reduce what we purchase.
And does anyone feel guilty indulging in the excess? Sometimes I do. While I appreciate the thought, I feel guilty about receiving items with excessive packaging or are not practical or consumable.