The car boot season has arrived! Spring provides the impetus for a good clear-out - maybe it’s the sunshine creeping into corners that we never dare access when energy is low and skies are grey, or maybe it’s just the realisation of how dirty the windows look once the clear light of day shows them up.
What do we gain from a good clear-out? I’ve just been to the dump and already we have more room and feel less cluttered. It gives a chance to simplify our possessions and discern what we really need and what we thought we might need but haven’t actually used. Letting go of things we thought we couldn’t do without frees us considerably from a tendency to hoard. Letting go is good for our spirits and frees up energy. We do have choices - throw away wholesale if money is no object - replace with new - simply bin it? Or recycle what we can - this takes more thought and time: what can go into bins, what has to be taken to the dump, what could be of use to someone else.
I’m all for the three Rs – Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. For me it’s about caring for our beautiful earth and caring for others. Recycling makes better use of the natural resources of the world. The more we can re-use what has already been manufactured, the less energy and raw material we use in creating new consumer goods. I did a search on “why bother to recycle” and was sent to the preston.gov.uk website, which is full of information. For instance using recycled aluminium saves us 95 per cent of energy. This in turn will reduce global warming, which will slow down the rate at which our water levels are rising. How many lives and life-giving businesses will be lost to flooding in villages in the next century, not just in Asia but everywhere. Think about it! Not our business, you might say. Really?
Whatever we do now affects someone else in the future. John Donne wrote “No man is an island entire of itself”. Giving to charity shops and/or table top sales can really benefit other people - saving them money or raising money for a good cause. For many young people setting up a home, buying second-hand is the only manageable way.
Recycling can be a work of love and generosity as well as making us feel better. Let’s do it!