This post is a part of A-Z Challenge for bloggers, that takes place every year in the month of April. Bloggers take part in this challenge for self-improvement and to overcome the “writer’s block”. Each one of us writes one article every day, starting from the alphabet ‘A’, right up to ‘Z’. My theme for this year’s challenge is – “Life Philosophies round the World”.
As I mentioned in my first blog post of this challenge, Aylyak Philosophy, it’s a pleasant surprise to see how culturally, and geographically different communities believe in similar school of thoughts. So, here’s another life philosophy which is similar to the Aylyak ideology but has it’s own perks too.
What is Buen Vivir Philosophy?
Buen vivir can be loosely translated to ‘good living’ or ‘well living’. Originating from Ecuador, this social philosophy teaches us to emphasis on the community and family as a whole, rather than the individual. People who live a buen vivir life, act with the collective in mind and always consider themselves as a part of the wider natural world and not themselves as the centre of the world. This helps them value simpler things in life, like a good harvest, the well-being of their family and the food in their plate.
In simple words, appreciating and relishing what you have rather than longing for what you could have.
Ecuadorians understand that what truly matters is spending time with loved ones and preserving the environment around them, rather than spending hours in office cubicles in order to get ahead as an individual. Buen vivir is the belief that the good of the community is placed above that of an individual, and a community is made up of nature, plants, animals, and the Earth along with the people around us.
It teaches us to respect the land and the fact that land cannot be owned, rather it should be honored and protected.
Sounds too much work?
Buen vivir doesn’t need major life altering. It just requires a little perspective adjustment towards life. Like slowing down a little, making time for loved ones, putting others’ needs first, being thankful for what we have and looking up from our phone to enjoy the beautiful rains and chirpy birds around. It requires the understanding that “a good life” is often about treasuring memorable experiences, rather than the things we own.
Inculcating Buen Vivir in the Constitution
This social philosophy has inspired the Ecuadorian constitution, which now says: “We … hereby decide to build a new form of public coexistence, in diversity and in harmony with nature, to achieve the good way of living.”
This left me wondering…
So, if we look back, we humans had ample natural resources for a peaceful and happy survival. However, we exploited what we had, in order to achieve what we dreamed of, like better technology, automation, and luxurious amenities. Eventually landing up longing for what we had and lost, i.e. natural resources! Hence, enjoying nothing in the process and living with a feeling of longing more and more. Isn’t that stupidly ironic?
This does not mean we don’t work towards development, rather, work with the community in peace and harmony to bring good and development for the community as a whole, and not just the individual.
This post is part of #BlogchatterAtoZ challenge 2021.