Saturday, 1 April 2017

‘Simplicity’ Made Easy by Jennifer Kavanagh

Jennifer Kavanagh has run a community centre in London’s East End, worked with street homeless people and refugees, set up a microcredit programme in London, and worked as a research associate for the Prison Reform Trust. She currently sets up microcredit programmes in Africa and facilitates conflict resolution workshops for Alternatives to Violence (AVP), both in prison and in the community. Since selling her business, after a year’s travel round the world in 2001/2, Jennifer found that she did not want her flat or most of its furniture, and has felt liberated by letting go of many of her possessions. Although she now lives in central London, her flat is small and quiet: an urban retreat, with an occasional glimpse of the stars. Jennifer finds balancing an active life with a pull towards contemplation provides a continuing and fruitful challenge. As she writes, “Life in the world is about a series of balances: of the life within and the outside world; inner experience and outward witness, plenitude and the void”.

Jennifer Kavanagh worked in publishing for nearly thirty years, the last fourteen as an independent literary agent. With this book, ‘Simplicity’, discover how simplicity can become a way of life. In folk history and religion, from the Shakers to Zen, ‘simplicity’ has generally been considered a good thing. Our own motivation may be to leave a smaller carbon footprint, to express a compassionate solidarity with those who have least; or simply to downsize. Whatever our concern, it is likely that the motivation to live a simpler life will spring from within. Simplicity is a focus on what matters. Reducing the clutter in our lives, whether in material objects, use of time or money, or in our religious practices, leads to an increased clarity of vision and a focus; a view of life and its priorities that is in itself simple. Step by step we can move towards a state in which our attitudes and life are all of a piece, integrated and made one. Simplicity is the outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace.

Also authored by Jennifer Kavanagh ‘Journey Home’, ‘New Light’, 'The World is our Cloister’, ‘Call of the Bell Bird’.

From the ‘Made Easy’ series by O Books, ‘Simplicity’ Made Easy by Jennifer Kavanagh:
Simplicity Made Easy

For talks, workshops and retreats and all other information, visit Jennifer Kavanagh’s website:

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