I was inspired to write this article when I heard these three things to live in a sustainable lifestyle from a scientist. This happened when I attended the international workshop on the Role of Academy Science in Climate Change and Sustainable Development sponsored by National Academy of Sciences and Technology, Philippines.
The workshop was attended by international scientist on various fields and expertise on climate change, sustainable development, economics and urban development to name a few.
I was also honored and proud to met the National Scientist Gelia Castillo – a social scientist. I just knew her in books and then finally in that conference, I accidentally had a chance to take a photo with her.
Now, lets go back to my main idea in this post.
I do agree to the idea of the plenary speaker in that conference.
Sustainable development should not be a slogan per se. Many organizations both public and private are using the term sustainable development.
You can read all definitions of sustainable development in the Internet, but the point is it seems that the term sustainable development is just merely a slogan.
Maybe because this sounds appealing to the funding donors to support for programs and projects in sustainable development.
No wonder why the trend today is on sustainability – sustainable water resource management, sustainable living strategies. Every now and then we heard the word sustainable and its becoming a mundane.
To this, I agree that sustainable development should not be a slogan itself but a lifestyle.
Sustainable lifestyle is what we are aiming today. Advances in science and technology have given mankind a leap towards the future, but sometimes there are loopholes that needs to be taken care of.
Everything is invented for the good of mankind, but its latent function are more detrimental to mankind. For example, on the consumption of foods.
A lot of foods nowadays are processed by big industries for the convenience of customers. This convenience has put humans in the path to perdition because not all foods are healthy. For this reason, many people prefer organic foods. However, there are still debates on this in the agriculture science as to whether the food can be considered as organic or not.
And there is also the issue of GMO’s.
It doesn’t mean that a farmer is growing organic crops, the product is already organic. How about the inputs that were used in growing and producing the crops, is it organic?
In this sense, the more advanced our society, the more risk we have.
But this doesn’t mean that we will not eat at all. That is why our goal is to have a sustainable lifestyle.
Its utilizing our resources today for the benefit of all without putting our society or lives in peril in the near future.
So, the question is how to live a sustainable lifestyle?
According to Prof. Shamsher Ali, AASSA Vice President you have to answer yourself this three questions when making decisions on buying goods.
It doesn’t mean that when given the access to all resources you should use everything all at once.
Imagine if you are in a mall and surrounded by many clothes and shoes that you would love to buy. Granting that you have money to buy those goods, would you buy as many as you can?
Or if you are having a hard time to decide whether to buy new pants or not?
What would you do?
According to him, ask yourself these three simple questions to have a sustainable lifestyle.
Remember sustainable lifestyle is all about changing our behaviors and attitude.
So, when buying something ask yourself:
1. Do I need it?
Its plain and simple, if you need it, then buy it, if you don’t, then don’t make it hard for yourself to worry about it. Many people are confused about needs and wants. Sometimes people used this alternatively, especially if in their life they have the abundance of resources.
I remember an author once wrote,
“The cup most difficult to carry is not the cup that is empty, but the cup that is full to the brim. It is this that needs to be most carefully balanced. Affliction and adversity bring disappointment and sorrow; but it is prosperity that is most dangerous to spiritual life (Ministry of Healing, 211.3).
If you have answers to the first question, ask again the second question.
2. Do I badly need it?
Do you badly need it?
Then go, buy it.
Lastly, ask again the third question.
3. Can I live without it?
I read a quote from Facebook it says,
You don’t need everything in life. You only need the basic things. If you can find an alternative to what you need, the better.
Its simplicity that matters if you want to be live a sustainable life.
The wise man once said;
This is all that I have learned: God made us plain and simple, but we have made ourselves very complicated. Ecclesiastes 7:29
If you have the answer to the top three questions, then you can make your own decision to practice and live a sustainable lifestyle.