Over the years I have come to believe that objects and personal belongings self-propagate. I am not sure how they do this but the evidence seems clear. For instance, whenever I clear out my garage or shop, usually with in days, and many times even with in hours, objects begin to once again appear. I consider it miraculous since no one in the family ever seems to know, or at least take responsibility for, the bicycle helmet, skateboard, or other object that is deposited in the middle of my momentarily pristine garage floor. And just this the past week I discovered a George Foreman grill on my workbench. It seems that it walked on its own a distance of some sixty feet from the kitchen and the deposited itself in the middle of my workbench where it then had the audacity to give birth to a broken vacuum cleaner that now sat right beside it.
Truth be known, I am as much a culprit in the crime of accumulating and depositing things where they don’t belong as any other member of my family. I think that one of the reasons we all tend to accumulate stuff is because it can be painful to let things go. Memories and dreams are connected to objects and letting things go means that often we have to let the dreams go too.
Yesterday I confronted myself about a pneumatic motorcycle lift that I have held onto, but I have not used it for over a decade. I realized the reason I was holding on to it was because of the memories of earlier times when I built a number of motorcycles on it, and the fantasy that I may one day want to do that again. I had to face reality and admit that my life has changed and this is something that I will most likely never do again. So, last night I loaded it into my truck and gave it to a friend. But instead of grief I experienced the joy that comes from knowing I helped someone else, and I felt peace with one less thing drawing on my attention.
Letting go of physical objects even helps us let go of emotional baggage. It is a very hard thing to do but having less really does result in having more. Letting go of some things means we are free to grab new things that are now more important to us. Having fewer material objects also means we have less to distract us and that can mean more peace. Having less by giving things away also means we have the joy of seeing others benefit from our surplus. Less really can mean more!