The Abundance of Less: Lessons in Simple Living from Rural Japan

The Abundance of Less: Lessons in Simple Living from Rural Japan

by Andy Couturier
The Abundance of Less: Lessons in Simple Living from Rural Japan

The Abundance of Less: Lessons in Simple Living from Rural Japan

by Andy Couturier


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An evocative study of life in rural Japan, this inspiring book for fans of Marie Kondo proves true wealth can be found by living sustainably among life’s simple but profound luxuries
The Abundance of Less captures the texture of sustainable lives well lived in these ten profiles of ordinary—yet exceptional—men and women who left behind mainstream existences in urban Japan to live surrounded by the luxuries of nature, art, friends, delicious food, and an abundance of time. Drawing on traditional Eastern spiritual wisdom and culture, these pioneers describe the profound personal transformations they underwent as they escaped the stress, consumerism, busyness, and dependence on technology of modern life.
This intimate and evocative book tells of their fulfilling lives as artists, philosophers, and farmers who rely on themselves for happiness and sustenance. By inviting readers to enter into the essence of these individuals’ days, Couturier shows us how we too can bring more meaning and richness to our own lives.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781623171322
Publisher: North Atlantic Books
Publication date: 08/01/2017
Pages: 432
Sales rank: 681,708
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Andy Couturier spent four years studying sustainable living in rural Japan. There, he worked with local environmentalists, wrote for The Japan Times, and studied how Japanese aesthetics can help us develop new forms of writing. Couturier has also hitchhiked across the Sahara desert, been a researcher for Greenpeace, built his own house with hand tools, and taught intuitive writing for more than two decades. He is a student of many different Asian philosophical systems and is fluent in Japanese.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xi

Introduction to the 2017 Edition xiv

Introduction xv

1 An Anarchist Potter and His Underground Teahouse San Oizumi 1

2 A Woodblock Craftsman Discovers Hand Work and the Heart Osamu Nakamura 39

3 Making Time to Stop and Think: Principles to Live by from a Mother and Activist Atsuko Watanabe 69

4 The Exuberant Buddhist Kogan Murata 107

5 Breaking the Trance of "The Next Better Thing" Asha Amemiya 149

6 From Engineer to Children's Book Artist to Cosmological Theorist Akira Ito 179

7 "Sometimes Just Touching the Earth Is Enough" Wakako Oe 223

8 In Search of the Peculiar: A Collector of Fragrances and His Ceramic Menagerie Gufu Watanabe 255

9 A Philosopher of the Rice Fields Koichi Yamashita 301

10 "Where From, Where To?" A Writer and Philosopher Investigates the Dreams of the Universe Masanori Oe 329

Afterword: The Author's Story 369

About the Author 406

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