The tiny life is indeed freedom: freedom from long-term mortgages, freedom from unnecessary possessions, and freedom from the both the expected and unexpected headaches larger living brings.
But it is not only freedom from, it is also freedom for: freedom to have more discretionary income to use wisely or to save; freedom for economies of scale; freedom for more focused energy to harness one’s will and talents with less encumbrance.
Sometimes our possessions come in the way of our self-actualizing.
Just as sadly, have we reached a point where we have allowed our possessions and the size of our homes or dwellings or that of others to define who we are and determine our self-worth, let alone those of others?
Perhaps the tiny life will bring us more into contact with those who do not allow the amount or type or “size” of one’s possessions blind them to the inherent dignity and self-worth of everyone.
“It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”
How to reshape suburban sprawl? If you think about it the demands of today are high. People want their McMansion on decent sized lots (which they think is 1/3 an acre, but that’s for another day). I live in Charlotte, NC where our outer beltway is over a hundred miles long and it doesn’t even begin to encircle Charlotte’s suburb. If you have errands to run, in a single day, I constantly drive 100 miles just for errands! How can we fix this?
Enter the Inhabitat / Dwell REBURBIA competition, by sending up to 5 images and a statement about your design proposal. You can submit as many entries as you like, but each individual entry should be focused on one singular design problem/solution (i.e. a McMansion farm rehab, a bicycle transportation hub, a piezoelectric, energy-generating freeway paving system). Entries will be judged on clarity of idea, usefulness of design, and visual/aesthetic appeal of renderings.
go to http://www.re-burbia.com/ to check it out!
So why embark on “the tiny life”?
The answer is found in stewardship– the wise use of one’s time, energy, fiscal and other resources.
Are you wisely using the space in which you live? Which room or rooms do you live in the most? What happens to the others? Are you bothered by all the space within your dwelling that is least occupied?
“Tiny” is the efficient use of space. Admittedly, there is much less space to “expand” one’s life—one’s possessions and one’s decorative sense are two examples. Where do we really live, though—in our dwellings or in our hearts and relationship space?
But “tiny” also means less money expended to maintain a larger space that has become for many of us an idol. In 1963, my parents took on a 25-year mortgage on a new, two-story house with four bedrooms that cost $17,500. That same home today can sell for close to $300,000.
How scales of economy have changed! “Tiny” addresses the buying power of present dollars as much as it reflects the desire not to buy into the myth that bigger is better.
Bigger is not necessarily better. For most of us fascinated by tiny living, the exploration of all things tiny imparts hope.