Minimalism: The Millenial's Guide To Opulence

Friday, 05 June 2020



Minimalism: The Millenial's Guide To Opulence

Rifa Deka | September 07, 2019 13:37 hrs

We’ve all heard the saying, “Less is more.” The ‘Minimal’ is more visually appealing; it is aesthetic. What is ‘Minimalism’? Why is it so appealing? Is it because we’re all looking for ways to de-clutter our lives?

Throughout history, we humans have fought to free ourselves. First, to free ourselves from tyranny, next to free ourselves from oppression, then to free ourselves from the societal norms but today, this generation fights for a different kind of freedom through ‘Minimalism’. Freedom or lightness from purposeful limitation is the new ‘in’ thing.

As our world continues to grow more and more complex with each passing day, minimalism offers a stress-free life with less distraction, less clutter, more freedom and most importantly, more time. These are things people search for more desperately today than ever before.

The modern concept of Minimalism makes one look at all worldly possessions as tools. Once we start to see these things as tools, we can slowly watch the fondness or attachment that we have towards that materialistic substance fade. If we observe the teachings of Buddha closely, we will find that Buddhism, in fact does preach Minimalism.

The reduction of physical and materialistic possessions may be minimalistic to an extent, but it is not minimalism in itself. Minimalism is when we list down things that add value to our lives and keep these things, while ridding ourselves of everything else that does not add any value to us.

In the 21st century, we love owning materialistic things – a fancy car, a big house, branded clothes, expensive jewellery and status symbols to display our nominal value. What about intrinsic value? It is in search of this intrinsic value of ours that the new generation has adopted minimalism. To calculate the true worth, of what truly adds value, an escape from all other clutter.

In a world where everybody is a part of a rat race, of trying to prove their worth through materialistic possessions, minimalists look for ‘freedom’. In a world where everybody wants to have followers and have numerous relationships, minimalists keep a small but tightly knit circle. This does not mean that they do not have relationships, it simply means that they know who the ‘tools’ are and who truly add ‘value’ to their lives. They know whom to keep close and whom at bay, whom to make a priority and whom to let go of.

Minimalists are always in search of ways to free themselves, looking for freedom from the fear of ruining things, freedom from fear of losing someone or something dear to them, freedom from isolation and emptiness. Minimalists conquer this fear by looking at things through fresh perspectives. When things become tools – to satiate hunger, to reach a destination, to get the job done, that is when they know they’re out of the rat race, and that is what leads them towards the road less travelled by.

So many people understand today that less consumption leads to utilizing fewer resources which in turn equals to exhaustion of earth’s resources at a much slower rate. There are so many other reasons behind why minimalists do what they do. Living on tighter budgets has become a lifestyle for some in this age of stagnant wages and ever increasing rate of unemployment. People have begun to re-evaluate their purchases; they have learnt to differentiate between what is essential and what is not. People are tired of carrying the load of debt on their shoulders and have now decided to break out of this vicious circle. They are aware that wastage is not an option in a world where poverty, malnourishment and income inequalities still exist.

Technology has a huge role to play in the minimalist movement. We once had a radio transistor, a calculator, a wall clock, a calendar, a television set, a personal computer, notepads, telephones, pagers, so on and so forth. The inherent necessity of keeping all these physical items in our home is now a thing of the past. Today, one smart phone does it all! If this isn’t minimalism, then what is? Besides, how can one explore the world if one’s belongings don’t fit into one single backpack?

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