Saturday, June 13, 2020

The Decision to Leave Came in an Instant [The Abundance of Less]

Chapter two of The Abundance of Less is centered around Osamu Nakamura. One of my favorite excerpts reads:

"The decision to actually leave," he continues, "happened in an instant. I looked at my life, and I knew that I didn't want to wake up one day and find myself an old man filled with regret that I hadn't seen the things of the world...Of course, there are two kinds of regret I could have faced: I knew it was quite possible that I might end up stranded in some foreign country, miserable, without a

ny money, and knowing that I had given up my job. But when I compared that possible regret against retiring at sixty-five years old, having known nothing except working at my job -- that was when I knew. The decision, as I said, came in an instant."

Couturier, soon after the above passage, notes that "In the world system of increasingly discrete labor...the act of disentangling oneself from the whole might, in hindsight, appear quite radical." So, it really is a heroic act to live a truly individual life as disconnected from the invisible social pressures that are all around us.

I've written a thread on r/MindBodySpirit about this book which you can find here. Please comment if you can.

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