Living Quietly, Busily, Leisurely

A life without cause is a life without effect

~ Barbarella


It’s quietly busy here at Homestead 2.0 in Belize. I’m yet again pursuing a life of leisure. Although I’ve written a few missives about my time here, most recently here and here, the statements about being quietly busy and leisure likely require explanation.

It’s quiet where I live, nearly two miles from the small Mayan village of San Antonio in the Cayo District. Belize is home to only about 370,000 people, making it among the least-densely populated countries on Earth. Adding to — or perhaps subtracting from — the low number of humans, I purposely live on a 57-acre, working homestead in a rural area. It’s a peaceful place in the jungle, with far more fowl than humans on the 57 acres (23 hectares).

It’s busy, too, also by choice. I’ve built a virtual treadmill for myself on which I exercise daily. My days as a teacher continue in presentation halls and also as host to Workaway guests. And I still respond to the endless demands on my time from people unwilling to use an online search engine or familiarize themselves with my expansive body of work. Physical labor and time online are interrupted by loud music, raucous laughter, and dance. I literally dance at the edge of extinction, my underlying sadness overcome by the joy of the moment.

Ergo, I’m quietly busy. And generally quite contented with my life.

My life of leisure is easily explained via definition. In the historical sense, I pursue a life of leisure, as I did during my many years on college and university campuses: I choose the work I do.

I work hard. I rarely play games of any kind, although I seek opportunities to express humor, absurdity, and love. I choose the work I do, which generally includes the kinds of activities befitting a professor: thinking, writing, and speaking.

I recognize and routinely acknowledge my enormous privilege. Relatively few humans get to pursue the work they love in a desirable location. That I’m unpaid for the privilege is a minor concern. That I’m able to survive without a paycheck for nearly nine years, so far, is further testimony to my privilege.

It helps, a lot, that I’m not alone in my quest. A steady stream of intellectually curious visitors, like-minded partners, and financially generous followers provide support in many ways. Most notable is the foundational understanding of the owner of Stardust Sanctuary, my partner in myriad ways. Some incorrectly say she was looking for a knight when we connected, intellectually and emotionally. It’s clear she was instead looking for the sword I helped her find.

The sword is the one carried by every true educator. It it used to remove ignorance and hubris. It exposes evidence, thereby acting as an agent of truth. My partner and I use Homestead 2.0, aka Stardust Sanctuary, as an educational facility. Here, and throughout the world by many means, we facilitate learning. Facilitating learning is our mission. Educating is our shared purpose.

I ask myself at least a dozen times daily whether my actions match my purpose. Am I pursuing excellence? Am I doing what I love? Am I doing it well? Am I acting respectfully, lovingly, to those around me?

Quietly and busily I pursue a life of my choosing. My life of purpose has had significant effects.

I’m aware it could be worse. Indeed, I’ve great motivation for living in the here and now: I’ve no doubt that it soon will be much worse.