Monday, August 20, 2012

Green Living - Solidarity and Inner Peace

Green LivingGreen Living
Going green is included in just about everything these days. There is green food, green clothing, green homes, green energy, green gadgets, and just about anything in existence being classified as green. What this means is that the products are sustainable and make a small imprint on the earth. For example, you might use less oil based products and more plant products because it is sustainable and healthier for humans. This is a great trend that has caught on because of the growth in high educational attainment and in the recent trend of huge price increases in poor quality commodities.  Additionally, the recent gas spike, alone, helped a ton of people decide to go green.
The trend is heavily product focused. You need the right green food because you will live longer and be healthier. You need some hemp fabric because it is so much better for your skin. The list goes on and on. It is great that we have green products, but you can get lost in all the details. We need to remember that being green is more than just buying the right things. It is a way of life that brings solidarity and harmony to one's life and society.
All Living Things Connected
Can you see the happiness of a child compared to that of an adult? How can you feel the joy of a baby or a puppy? The joy of each living thing comes from being connected in a spiritual way. It doesn't always make sense. For example, babies and children have little control over their surroundings and yet they are so happy. What makes sense is that we are learning through our culture that happiness comes from a certain way of life. We might call it the good life. It usually has something to do with a house, an education, a nice car, and family vacations.
Fortunately, there are true green enthusiasts that understand connection to the earth in a different way. In the movie, Into the Wild the main character says that life was the most exciting when he was penniless. This is a true story of a man who gave up all his possessions and burned his money on a quest to connect with God.  
Native Americans have long understood the relationship between connectedness to earth and joy in life. The earth gives to each of us and in return we should give back. Many cultures believe that God rewards Good for Good and Evil for Evil. You do something good and it comes back to you. Hence, do a lot of good things to and for people.
How Does Green Living Connect Us?
First and foremost green living gets you to think about how we all interact in society. It is more altruistic because you main focus is not maximizing every dollar. You focus changes from consuming as much as possible to consuming what you need responsibly and giving of yourself. Many people in this trend will say that one day it just hit them that the only thing they will leave on the earth when they pass on is their legacy. And, how do you leave a legacy? You need to connect with people and make a difference to those around you. You're not going to do that sipping cokes, and watching 35 hours of television a week.
Living Simple and Green
It all starts with little changes. One good thing to do is to sit down and make a list of all the items your regularly purchase and put a w (want) or n (need) by the item. If you are truly honest, the needs are not really all that high. Many of us are struggling because of our wants without realizing it. It's still fine to plan for wants and to have them. The important thing is where your focus lies. Does your focus help you connect (happiness) or disconnect (unhappiness)? At some point, many in the green movement will actually feel a sense of relief from not purchasing items. There is that rush and good feeling from shopping that a lot of people get. However, the more connected you feel, the less your desire will be for shopping. And, in fact, many will eventually feel a sense of true peace without longing for any one thing. Some people in the green movement actually feel sorry for these obsessive materialists. They don't do it mockingly, but sincerely want everyone around them to feel the same connectedness.
Some Green Steps    
The first thing for many of us is that we start to recycle things. We find a certain joy in knowing that we are being good stewards of what we have. Then, the big jump might come from purchasing a green car or a green wardrobe. Some of us might just think it's a cool thing to do.
The biggest step, perhaps, is when you start to simplify your life. It's different for everyone. You might want to drink out of one cup instead of using several every day. You may go through your home and eliminate items not being used. In fact, you may start finding joy in getting rid of things because you realize that the less stuff you have the more easily you can be connected. You begin to feel a sense of freedom in spirit that goes beyond the norm. Your style becomes minimalist and purchases are based on holistic ideals that increase connectiveness. You will no longer crave, but will instead find intense joy in just being alive.  How do you find that joy?
Know Thyself 
Some spiritual teachers believe that the greatest knowledge of happiness is to know thyself. As William Shakespeare said, "To thine own self be true". How can you be true to yourself unless you know who you are? This is a hard question, but on the face of it, there are some certain things I am sure of. I can connect with living things. I can connect with people much better in person than through television. I can connect to natural products much better than man made products. The concept of knowing me comes through serving others.
Consumerism and materialism tend to drive much of our culture. The focus, for many, is on self. This inward focus blinds the true self. In some cases, self concept is stripped away and the void is filled with countless hours of television, food, and shopping. The bigger the void the stronger the feeling of getting more grows because people unconsciously think that the void can be filled with things. It is logical because that is what the culture has taught them from birth. Corporations spend billions of dollars reinforcing the idea that things will make us happy and defining our needs for us.  Many of us erroneously believe that we are immune to all the clever advertising.
Wouldn't it make more sense that we determine our own needs? It is vital that we listen to our own hearts. Don't ignore the little voice inside you! Pay attention to it, follow it, and the voice will get louder.  In time, you will become more connected.
We haven't focused much on product here, but going green is about a lot more than buying the most fuel efficient car, wearing bamboo clothing, or eating organic foods. Green living is ultimately about solidarity and inner peace.        
For further information about green living, please visit Solar Home or another favorite site called Green Energy

Friday, August 10, 2012

4 Unexpected Eco Friendly Green Living Tips

Green Living TipsReady to be surprised by unexpected tips for a better and greener life? Following are 4 tips, please read them while thinking of the positive changes you will have in your life when implementing each or any of these tips. So without any further delay, here are the promised tips for Eco Green Living:
Eco Green Living Tip 1 -
Get rid of your desktop
Have you ever thought that a laptop uses barely 25% of electricity consumed by a desktop computer? Get rid of your desktop computer today and your life will become greener.
If you say to yourself - "can not do that now" and you really do not want to get rid of your desktop computer - you can at least turn it off at night - this will save you a nice 90 dollars a year per computer. 2 computers sum up to $180 a year, if you count in away from home time like vacations and if you are willing to turn off your monitor when you are not next to your computer - this can easily save a $1000 a year.
Eco Green Living Tip 2 -
Upgrade your refrigerator
Have you ever thought that your refrigerator accounts for approximately one sixth of all your energy consumption at home? Upgrading your refrigerator might not be cheap - but considering the electricity savings you can achieve - it will pay for itself! There is a lot of information online about saving money while living a green life while saving money - so look into it! This will help your Eco Green Living.
Even if you decide not to change your refrigerator - you can still save some energy here by adjusting the temperature of your current refrigerator to 37 and 3 degrees.
Eco Green Living Tip 3 -
Throw away your washing machine
Have you ever thought that laundry is your second largest water consumption? While you are at the shop replacing your refrigerator, stop by the washing machines department. Chances are that similar to the savings you will get when upgrading your refrigerator - the washing machine sales will explain you how much of your electricity and water bills you will save after moving to a brand new energy efficient machine.
If you say to yourself - "can not do that now" and you really do not want to get rid of your old washing machine, you can still save up to 80% of the energy your washing machine is using by using cold water to wash clothes.
Eco Green Living Tip 4 -
Find a new house
Your address has a major impact on your eco footprint. A lot of energy is being consumed on transportation when you go to and from work and your kids go to and from school. Move your house and save energy, live green life and have much more quality time with family at your green home.
If you can not afford to move house now - you can live a greener life at your home by doing more: develop a long term home improvement plan that reduces energy resources, improving your life quality and saves money.
I hope you found these steps for eco green living useful and even if you will not change your house - hope this article helped you on your direction to green live. The Internet has a lot of great resources to help you going green - so I hope you keep reading, researching and acting.
Related articles about Eco Green Living: 4 Green Living Tips
About the Author<
Harold Casey is passionate about eco green living, he writes about green living, saving energy, saving gas, saving water, solar energy and more - all to help people live a green life. You can visit his website at Eco Green Living

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Finding The Best Green Living Retirement Homes

Green LivingThe baby boomer generation is well known for being a part of green initiatives and green living ideas. Members of this generation lived through the birth of the technological age and saw multiple wars in which natural resources were destroyed. Thus, focus on green living only seems natural to many in retirement.
However, older individuals often meet challenges when attempting to maintain their green living. Unfortunately, their bodies do not allow them pleasures like tending their green gardens or volunteering in a marathon for cancer anymore. Retirement communities have become increasingly popular with the boomer generation. Seniors no longer dread retirement communities; they provide senior activities, multiple types of housing, senior clubs and sports, and accessible medical attention.
How do you find a green retirement community and continue your green living? What makes a retirement community "green"?
Many aspects of a community and/or building complex make it environmentally friendly or "green living friendly". A green home or complex must meet the following requirements that encompass necessities not only in the way the area is run but how it was built in the first place.
  • Beats the EPA's Energy Star Standards
  • Achieves high standards of indoor air quality
  • Uses building materials that are locally produced or that have been recycled
  • Incorporates water conservation and storm water management
  • Achieves a minimal footprint on the land
  • Keeps carbon emissions low through use of renewable energy or super-efficient building envelopes
Clearly other aspects of green living can be incorporated into a green retirement community such as green transportation and the surrounding area.
Is a Community Truly Practicing Green Living Ideas? Watch out for Greenwashing!
Unfortunately, one of the dangers of searching for green living retirement homes is finding communities that, on the surface, appear to meet all of your environmental concerns but, in reality, simply use the term "green" as a popular advertising technique.
It has become a trend with multiple developers to layer environmental lingo into their marketing strategies and pitches. Terms like "eco-sensitive" don't mean a thing, but potential clients associate its usage with constructive environmental initiative.
This use of companies pretending to be environmentally friendly when in fact they are not is called greenwashing. A sure sign of greenwashing is if the "green" community you are looking at has a golf course attached to it. Golf courses are generally extremely bad for the environment due to the massive amount of pesticides and water that they need for upkeep. Additional warning signs of potential greenwashing include
  • talking about protecting natural resources
  • protecting and having environmental quality
  • incorporating biodiversity
How Do you Check the Community's Claims?
Retirees need to be wary of senior housing that say they incorporate green living; but do not be cynical! A simple way of finding out if a claim is true includes checking LEED certification standards for communal buildings in the potential development.
The LEED stands for Leadership in energy and Environmental Design. Developed by the US Green Building Council, LEED is a non-profit, non-government department that changes the way buildings are designed, built, and operated.
Melissa Rubin is a senior copywriter and Web developer at OTO Networks, a digital marketing company located in Baltimore, Maryland. Her primary responsibilities include SEO, link building and creating content for multiple sites. A preview of a site on which she has worked,, is available with this article.