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Living More with Less Paperback – November 15, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Living More with Less 30th Anniversary Edition collects the wisdom and experience of those who live with less than a consumer culture says we need. With stories, reflections, and advice from people around the world who are making changes to their daily habits in response to climate change and global poverty, Living More with Less 30th Anniversary Edition is a vibrant collection of testimonies, old and new, of those who are discovering the joy of living with enough.
--Valerie Weaver-Zercher, editor

This book was decades ahead of its time, and is just as relevant today as it was thirty years ago . . . It is like a cookbook for life.
--Shane Claiborne, author of The Irresistible Revolution, speaker, and activist

This timely revised and updated edition is exceptionally wise, urgently necessary for the sake of saving our planet, pertinently and personally practical . . . Who could not but rave about this book!
--Marva Dawn, author of Unfettered Hope; Being Well When We're Ill; and Keeping the Sabbath Wholly



This book was decades ahead of its time, and is just as relevant today as it was thirty years ago . . . It is like a cookbook for life. --Shane Claiborne, author of The Irresistible Revolution, speaker, and activist

This timely revised and updated edition is exceptionally wise, urgently necessary for the sake of saving our planet, pertinently and personally practical . . . Who could not but rave about this book! --Marva Dawn, author of Unfettered Hope; Being Well When We're Ill; and Keeping the Sabbath Wholly

About the Author

Doris Janzen Longacre was associated with Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) and its worldwide ministries, In the Name of Christ. She served as dietitian of Hesston College from 1961-1963, as MCC hostess of the Language Study Center in Vietnam from 1964-1967, and in another MCC assignment in Indonesia in 1971-72. Just before completing her second book, Living More with Less, Longacre passed away after a 39-month battle with cancer.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 252 pages
  • Publisher: Herald Pr; 30th Anniversary edition (November 15, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0836195213
  • ISBN-13: 978-0836195217
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #293,086 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Writing in 1979, shortly before her untimely death, Doris Janzen Longacre "knew then what many people are just now discovering: living with less can bring more joy and contentment than living with a lot." Unfortunately, in the thirty years that have passed since the first edition of Live More With Less, most of our culture's trends have gone exactly against this philosophy. The go-go years of the 90s and early 00s led only to more and more consumption, larger houses, more clothes (did you know that census data shows Americans bought 75% more clothing in 2005 than in 1995?), and on and on.

With the changed economic climate of the past couple of years, perhaps there is no better time than now to read through and act upon the many good thoughts in this challenging book. Christians in North America especially should find much to ponder, pray about, and then act upon, both personally and as congregational groups.

This edition includes large sections of the 1980 text unchanged, but adds in a large number of essays and comments from Mennonites and others with suggestions for living "more with less" even, or especially, in the 21st century. Here you will find idea starters, suggestions, and examples of how many Christians around the world have been able to "live more with less" and have found great joy and fulfillment in the process.

Definitely something to be considered for anyone seeking to live out their Christian faith winsomely and wisely.
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Format: Paperback
I remember Doris Janzen Longacre's original volume, published in 1980. At that time I was a young mother who had been raised by frugal parents, so the ideas in this book attracted me. But it's more than a treatise on how to live simply. The author sets forth five life standards by which we should abide. In today's world, the standards call us to heed their guidance more than ever before.

This new version is updated with many contributors' suggestions for living in harmony with our neighbors and creation. The original life standards of Do Justice, Learn from the World Community, Nurture People, Cherish the Natural Order, and Nonconform Freely are expanded and enriched. I think every person can and should find ideas to implement to make our world better. The book contains much information that will prove useful when thinking through changes in lifestyle.

Get a copy for your home and your church library and ask your public library to purchase it too. Living More with Less has the potential to help transform our daily lives, which will then affect the rest of humanity.
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Format: Paperback
Living More with Less
30th anniversary edition
Doris Janzen Longacre
Revised and edited by Valerie Weaver-Zercher
© 2010 by Herald Press, Scottsdale, PA 15683
244 pp. plus notes, ppbk.

Rising from Mennonite culture and the Bible, the concepts in this book shows us many ways to escape the clutches of materialism and honor God in preserving His creation.

Doris Janzen Longacre wrote the first edition of this book thirty years ago, with a good response from readers. This edition has updated articles and ideas for a lifestyle that can escape the trap of materialism. Jesus called materialism thorns in our souls.

Part One introduces the legacy of Jantzen's writing and gives a retrospect for today.
Part two, The Life Standards, tells the theology behind living more with less and offers five life standards. Chapters discuss justice, making do, learning from the world community and the importance of nurturing people. One article talks about cherishing the natural order. Jantzen has written on `nonconforming freely'--enjoying the life of more with less.

Part Three, called Living Testimonies, discusses our use of money; our homes; home keeping with less; gardens, farms and markets; cooking and eating; clothes and bodies; transportation and travel; recreation; technology and media, and even churches and meetinghouses that embody the principle of living more with less.

A well-written and challenging book.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This was a good read but I would've preferred the original writings of the author only. Had I noticed the additional added content prior to purchase, I would've rethought buying. It seemed to me like it was a "toned down" version of the clear, forward message the original author, Doris, was trying to convey in her included excerpts. I walked away not feeling quite the urgency I had hoped because of the lack of directness and excessive filler. I wanted red meat and felt like I got chicken ceasar salad. None the less, it is a good book for today's contemporary crowd that doesn't want to fully commit to sudden or dramatic changes but subtle long term inclusions.
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Format: Paperback
In 1980, before "sustainable living" and "green" became trendy buzz-words, Doris Janzen Longacre wrote Living More with Less as a practical guide for a simple and healthy lifestyle with the future of the planet and the plight of mankind in mind. It isn't a book written to make one feel guilty for having more than those in third-world countries, but rather helps the reader determine what responsible living can look like. When those of us who have much choose to live more simply and not waste the resources at our disposal, it can create a ripple effect that helps those who are in need. Whether it be how we obtain our food, what energy sources we use, or even how we dispose of trash, it all makes a difference.

The book is divided into three sections: The Legacy of Living More with Less, The Life Standards, and Living Testimonies (essays from various authors about their own experiences of adopting a "more with less" lifestyle). It was this last section that was most interesting to me, addressing the topics of money and stewardship, homes and homekeeping; gardens, farms, and markets; cooking and eating, clothes and bodies, technology and media, churches, strengthening each other and organizing communities, among others.

I enjoyed the section on homekeeping in which the author challenges the reader to consider what is most important - making a home pretty or making it functional according to the needs of the occupants. She doesn't suggest that pretty doesn't have a place but rather points out that if that is the starting place, then we end up at the mercy of the magazines instead of first asking who we are as a family and what is the purpose of each room. Then, the decorative choices can be made with sustainability, the environment, finances, and functionality in mind.
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