The Art of Simplicity
From The New Book of The Art of Living
by Wilfred A. Peterson
Published in 1962
“Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity!” wrote Thoreau. “I say let your affairs be as one, two, three and not as a hundred or a thousand.”
The art of simplicity is simply to simplify…
Simplicity avoids the superficial, penetrates the complex, goes to the heart of the problem and pinpoints the key factors.
Simplicity does not beat around the bush. It does not take winding detours. It follows a straight line to the objective. Simplicity is the shortest distance between two points.
Simplicity does not elucidate the obscure, it emphasizes the obvious.
Simplicity solves problems. Listen to the testimony of Charles Kettering, a genius of modern research: “The Problem when solved will be simple.”
Simplicity discovers great ideas; a swinging cathedral lamp inspired the pendulum, watching a tea kettle led to the steam engine, a falling apple revealed the law of gravitation.
Simplicity is a mark of greatness. “To be simple is to be great.,” wrote Emerson. Only little men pretend; big men are genuine and sincere.
Simplicity has given all the big things little names: dawn, day, hope, love, home, peace, life, death.
Simplicity is eloquent: it is the Twenty-third Psalm and the Gettysburg Address.
Simplicity uses little words. It practices the wisdom of Lincoln, who said, “Make it so simple a child will understand; then no one will misunderstand.”
Simplicity deepens life. It magnifies the simple virtues on which man’s survival depends: humility, faith, courage, serenity, honesty, patience, justice, tolerance, thrift.
Simplicity is the arrow of the spirit!