outhouseI have ignored the fundamental essences of life for many decades. Oh, I have participated in all of the human functions – eating, drinking, relieving myself, and washing up. Yet these natural and marvelous functions of being alive have been compartmentalized into activities that actually serve to keep me separate from life rather than integrating me into being a vital part of it.

The above thoughts arose as I flushed the toilet after my usual morning ritual. It’s automatic, isn’t it? You flush it away with hardly a second thought. This morning, however, I was struck by one of the many changes that loom as Nancy and I contemplate a lighter, freer, and simpler future. In a tiny house or trailer, flushing away waste becomes more than a mindless motion of the hand and arm. It needs to go somewhere and that somewhere will become my responsibility in a more direct manner than ever before. I will have to deal with my own s–t.

We want to place ourselves in a position where we feel more connected to the fundamentals of life. In a tiny/small house everything will be up close and personal. Water will be conserved out of necessity. Shopping will be unavoidably concise and frugal. Cleaning up will be done by hand rather than by pushing the button on a dishwasher. Clothes will be washed by hand or by an occasional trip to the laundromat. Then, there won’t be all that many clothes in the first place. And, of course, the actual s–t will have to be dealt with. All of these are simple acts that are natural and appropriate. In fact, in a world that has lost its connection to the Earth and its collective mind they may actually be healing and renewing.

For sure, there will be new disciplines ahead, but they will not be onerous disciplines. We will try to make each small change be congruent with our deepest values and beliefs: living an appropriate human experience in harmony with nature, and working for the healing of the Earth and all the life She sustains. My conditioned mind will label the cultivation of each new habit, “inconvenient,” but in fact each step into direct and connected living will be freeing, joyful, and long overdue. It’s a delightful journey. I am so glad to be taking it with my wonderful spouse, whose spiritual practice is setting the tone and leading the way.



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