We all know what the word hippie (or hippy, as I like to write for some reason) conjures in our minds eye; long hair, peace, drugs, campervans, flowers and the lingering smell of patchouli. However, I’ve come to realise firstly, that this is a very old definition of the hippie lifestyle, and secondly, that I may be becoming one. Albeit slowly, and with the help of technology.
I don’t know about you, but with David Attenborough’s documentary and outspoken fight to save the planet, the increasing use of eco-friendly plastics, recycling, and the abundance of vegetarian and vegan food around, we are all becoming more hippie and better acquainted with what we can do to help save the environment, the planet and ultimately ourselves everyday of our lives! This is a brilliant thing and we need to keep going. Just watch this quick trailer below for a little motivation.
I use the term Modern Hippie to mean someone like myself. I am a lover of technology to help me daily, from blogging, to photos, to staying in contact and general Googling for help, much like the scrapbooks, cameras, letters and encyclopedias of old. Only it’s handily in my little tiny phone I take everywhere. People like me are conscious of the world and it’s plight, recycle, grow food, re-use things, aim to be self-sufficient as much as possible, buy eco-friendly products, and generally care about the place I live, this earth.
If you Google the term it’s a bit of a disaster. WikiHow presents the funniest view of becoming a Modern Hippie, with tutorials on not using deodorant, what music to listen to, what to wear, how to think politically, and that you should “Go for days or weeks living off a limited amount of supplies and the wilderness” (yeah, don’t do this willy-nilly, it’s a bit… well… silly!). Hilariously enough, WikiHow also tells you to be an individual as a hippie. So, I follow all your rules and then try to be individual about it, huh? Just a bit confusing, I think!
But taking the idea of being eco-friendly, more natural/organic, and saving money, the animals, and the world bit by bit we all can be considered modern hippies. The only difference between the old and the new is I believe a better understanding of why and how we do these things. The science of saving the planet.
We can forego the harsh chemicals and deodorants but replace them with natural and eco-friendly alternatives, as found in many shops now. We can double check the facts and find out exactly why a particular herb helps with something and not simply hear about it and believe it, technology is wonderful in the right context! I can check how to naturally grow better carrots and tomatoes, how to build a box out of old wood, how to sew and dye old clothes, all because I have technology with me. This is part of being a modern hippie.
Despite my course in Biology, a science subject one would assume was far away from the hippie lifestyle, I think it works. I am a scientist now, one with a conscience. It isn’t about being alternative, rejecting science or being different, it’s about saving the planet. It’s not a fun dress up day, a week long ‘phase’, it’s a proper livable lifestyle.
I make my own cheeses (a post to come if anyone is interested!), J brews his own wine, we dream of building our own house, I’m vegetarian, we want to grow our own food and have our own chickens for eggs, goats for milk, a smallholding as it were. J makes garden furniture out of old motorbike and car tyres, I’ve used reusable sanitary towels and will again, I wash my hair infrequently with shampoo, we use eco-friendly cleaning products – ones that are refillable at the local health shop, we forage for fruits and berries (used in winemaking and cooking), I buy second hand clothes and dye or repair my own, purchase used equipment, kitchen plates and bowls, household items and decorations, and we recycle as much as we can. I’ll have my own campervan when I pass my test and we’ll live a modern hippie lifestyle.
I feel justifiably qualified, even before our life together has properly begun in our own home, to state I am a modern hippie. What do you think about this term? Would you use it, and do you see yourself as a modern hippie?
I have lots of content in my brain to write about around this subject soon, including Cheese Making, Vegetarianism, growing our own food, eco health and beauty, children and eco lifestyles (when we have them) and others. If you’d like to have a post about any of these or anything else let me know, I’m keen to write the either way but it’s nice to get some enthusiasm!
Thanks for reading.