Life-based activities are things we can do because we are alive. They include, for example, appreciation, empathy, friendship, love, art, music, dance, sport, parenting, looking, listening, smelling, touching, tasting, thinking, meditating, scholarship, service, etc.
Rather than diminishing with use, life-based activities tend to become stronger and more rewarding through use.
While industry is always eager to sell material accessories, life-based development tends not to require much material resources, and is not likely to inspire organized conflict. Quite the contrary. By developing human potentials, we increase our personal satisfaction and simultaneously reduce our territorial and material needs, thereby reducing the threat we might pose to others.
The more we develop our skills and abilities the more we can help others to do the same. Sports, music and other creative activities give pleasure to both participants and observers. As we develop our own inner calm, we can help others find calm in their lives. As we increase our understanding, we can help others to understand.
The satisfaction derived from life-based activities is far greater, proportional to the material required, than from inessential material consumption. The prospects for the future improve when we place more value on what we can do with our lives, rather than on the quantity of the goods we consume. If the material accessories can be avoided, a shift to life-based activities would go a long way to ease environmental distress and enable the restoration of ecosystems health.
Exerpt from: Life, Money and Illusion by Mike Nickerson
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