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+2 votes
Money is the essential aspect of life. How does an Anarchist make an income without playing into or being victim of the system they oppose.
by (560 points)
Thanks. I did search but never saw this in the results.
i don't think much about how to make money (i use 80% less money in 2017 than i did in 1995)....i primarily think about how to live without involving money in my life as much as possible, which has involved a variety of changes to my life....most of them very satisfying and freeing..the most difficult part of it has to do with people in my life (family, old friends) who don't understand me living this way.
could you elaborate on changes? I would love to hear.. my plan is to get enough $ to buy property, and use solar panels, a well, and maybe a water or wind turbine for power, and grow my own food and meat. some may be sold to cover property tax and any other minimal bills but that's the world we live in, any other excess hopefully given away to someone I would want to and benefit from it. does your life look something like this? or more like crimethinc wandering and theft.

thanks, DD. i'll elaborate a little, but i hesitate to say too much mostly because i don't want to imply some sort of blueprint or prescription for living without money. i find it most important to have a mindset of wanting to live more free of money, and keeping that mindset as much as i can has led me to all sorts of things i never considered.

in my earlier efforts to live with less money in my life, i mostly reduced my consumption dramatically....not going out to eat, not buying stuff i don't really need, creating "entertainment" for myself and with others, etc. i also started living in much smaller spaces, and often with other people for varying amounts of time. i don't have a cellphone, i no longer use shampoo or deodorant, etc.

but as i continued this path, i found other ways of doing things....going to really, really, free markets....i've grown fruits and vegetables, done a little fishing and crabbing, picked wild berries, apples, mushrooms....gone to food banks (one in washington state also has an organic garden where i planted vegetables, weeded, etc.), got food that was thrown out by various stores....

and i also find stuff all the day, my mate said she wanted a nightstand, and put her attention toward it, and two days later we saw a pair of nightstands on the side of the road that someone gave away for free....for the last 6 years, i've also found wood to heat the small cabin i live in part time from a variety of sources. i've found sunglasses, jackets, all sorts of stuff.

another important aspect for me is giving away what i have, whether my energy or skills that i have to help someone else, or stuff that i no longer use. this doesn't always happen as easily as i thought, mostly because other people often get suspicious when you say you'll fix their computer for free, or watch their dogs for free, or give them a haircut, whatever....i think that, generally, people feel uncomfortable not paying for something. but i keep offering, anyway. i've had a few people stay with me via the couchsurfing website, and i've stayed some places like that myself. i've experienced so much more joy in feeling like i can freely give and freely receive than i ever did when thinking about or actively seeking more money.

all of this has led me to feeling much more creative, in how i live my daily life, and in other ways, like making some music, short films, etc....and i only wish i could find more people who desire the same sort of life....luckily i have one person, sometimes two.

a couple of good reads on the subject....charles eisenstein's "sacred economics" (and "Ascent of humanity"), mark boyle's "the moneyless man", daniel suelo's blog....that keep me thinking, and more inspired.

like i mentioned, the hardest aspect for me has been the reaction of people in my life to this different way of living....especially because at an earlier point in my life i made an above average income, with a big house, etc.....but a few do see how much happier and creative i feel now.

so much for the short elaboration! :)

edited to add:

i also began spending a lot more time outside every day...i really enjoy staring at stuff as it turns out....woodpeckers, clouds, the moon (i try to watch it rise each day), leaves falling off trees, even cars and city lights if i can find a perch a couple miles away.

i have a similar situation to ba@; my focus for the past 20 years has been to create a life for myself that is as divorced from capitalism and money as i can possibly be, given the current context of the world and my own desires and priorities.

those life changes have been relatively easy for me, simply because i am very clear on my priorities, and i have a certain level of "common sense", skills, and experience. i do not want the life that most (first worlders) want, and - like ba@ mentioned - that makes the life i desire difficult for many (including family and friends) to comprehend.

while my financial needs have been diminished dramatically over time (i get by on about $300 a month most of the time), i do still have needs for cash. so when i need to, i do what i need to do using the skills i have. mostly, i make my cash doing computer programming, which happens to be the easiest way for me to make what i need with the least possible effort. i have no moral qualms about doing work that i despise. as has been mentioned elsewhere, i would do my best not to do work that tangibly strengthens the system(s) that i hate and would love to see gone. though i guess any work for money is in some way perpetuating - if not strengthening - those systems. i don't typically let ideological concerns get in the way of my own survival on my own terms. but my desires for a different world do factor into my decisions, sometimes more than others.

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