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You are here: Home Resources Suggested Books, Curricula, and Videos By Topic Simplicity


Building awareness of the detriment of consumerism on the environment and society

Affluenza: The Cost of High Living
An excellent video - lively, engaging, and humorous, it highlights environmental, social, community, and spiritual costs of consumption.
Amish, The; A People of Preservation
Authentic vignettes of Amish origins, farm life, childhood, school, worship, recreation, courtship, barn raising, horse transportation, and the impact of tourism.
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life
Author: Kingsolver, Barbara. The author and her family venture away from industrial produced food and vow to eat only locally rural raised vegetables and what they can’t buy locally or grow, they learn to live without. This book shows how to put the kitchen back as a main part of family life, but also how to eat greener.
Break Forth Into Joy! Beyond a Consumer Lifestyle
This video helps us take a critical look at our lifestyle choices and the shape our lives have taken. It helps us realize how our obsession with buying and owning effects the earth, other people, and the human spirit. By sharing feelings, thoughts and practical ideas from a variety of people who struggle with life in a consumer society, this video calls us toward a lifestyle that is more fulfilling and joyful.
Brother Sun, Sister Moon
St. Francis of Assisi seeks communion with the natural world by renouncing his family riches to seek his own destiny unencumbered by material possessions.
Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future
Author: McKibben, Bill. McKibben writes about how us, as consumers, need to consume differently regarding food and energy use. He shows how more is not necessarily synonymous with better anymore. McKibben also writes about how local areas need to become more self sustainable and gives worldwide examples.
Dream of the Earth
Author: Thomas Berry. Explores human-earth relations and seeks a new, non-anthropocentric approach to the natural world. According to Berry, our immediate danger is not nuclear war but industrial plundering; our entire society, he argues, is trapped in a closed cycle of production and consumption. Berry points out that our perception of the earth is the product of cultural conditioning, and that most of us fail to think of ourselves as a species but rather as national, ethnic, religious or economic groups.
Escape from Affluenza
Producer: John DeGraaf and KCTS/Seattle and Oregon Public Broadcasting (1998). Escape from Affluenza, the sequel to Affluenza, helps viewers move beyond costly consumption. Includes a guide for group discussion. To order, go to Bullfrog Films' website.
Fighting Goliath: Texas Coal Wars
An important tool for educating and inspiring activists, business leaders, policymakers, lawyers, ranchers, teachers, doctors, students, and everyday citizens to get involved in stopping the rush to build conventional coal-fired power plants that use outmoded, polluting technology.
Having Enough in a Have More World; Lifestyles For a Living Planet
Speaker Vicki Robin, New Road Map Foundation, challenges us to reduce consumption and define what is enough for each of us.
How Much is Enough?
Alan Durning of Worldwatch Institute speaks on the effects of our excessive consumption on the world environment.
Hutterites, The; To Care and Not to Care
The Hutterites are a society in which faithfulness to Christ's teaching is more important than self-advancement or worldly comforts. They live strict communal lives based on the teachings of the Bible, while farming over a million acres in Canada and the United States using the most advanced farm equipment.
Living More with Less
Author: Longacre, Doris Janzen. Longacre provides a pattern for living with less and a wealth of practical suggestions from around the world in chapters on money, clothing, homes, transportation and travel, celebrations, and recreation.
More Fun, Less Stuff
The challenges and regards of a new American dream.
Plenty: One Man, One Woman, and a Robust Year of Eating Locally
Author: Smith, Alisa & JB Mackinnon. Vancouver BC author decides to eat food grown within 100 miles of home for one year and tells about this challenge.
Radical Simplicity
Author: Jim Merkel Many people feel the need to change their own lifestyles as a tangible way of trasnforming our unsustainable culture. Radical Simplicity is the first book to guide you toward a personal sustainability goal, and then offer a way to lower your footprint to be more equitable among all people, species, and generations.
Serve God, Save the Planet: A Christian Call to Action
Author: J. Matthew Sleeth. J. Matthew Sleeth was living the American dream as a medical chief of staff—until the increasing number of chronic illnesses he was witnessing gave him a new environmental awareness. In this book, Sleeth shares his family’s journey to simplicity, stronger relationships, and richer spiritual lives, and relates a prescription for sustainable living.
Simple Living: a Six-part Reflection for Small Groups
Author: Susan DeWitt, Linda Haydock, Wes Howard-Brook. Each booklet focuses on a different facet of simple living: getting started, walking gently on the Earth, time, money, technology, and community. The sessions are presented in a context of prayer and ritual, with consideration of both the personal and global effects of our choices.
Simpler Living, Compassionate Life: A Christian Perspective
An Earth Ministry publication that explores issues of voluntary simplicity from a faith and environmental perspective. This an effective tool for individuals and groups.
Simplicity as Compassion - Chee Yoke Ling
For use with Simplicity as Compassion Curriculum, by Michael Schut, produced by Earth Ministry.
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