A Bohemian Manifesto

A Bohemian Manifesto

Years ago, my chosen life-partner and I had a dream.  Off-grid, permaculture, away from the city, and basking in our own afterglow of happiness of life, and enjoying travels to experience the beauty of life and our earth wherever we find it, and the process of growing old together.

I was a little slow on my transitions and plans.  My personal self-evaluations and growth were stunted by not being able to see clearly through the “life cataracts” that blur the meaning of happiness in our hearts.  My goals have always been there, but until recently in life – there has been only lethargic TRUE movement towards those goals.

No more.

I’ll link to a few videos that I have taken the opportunity to watch.  The concepts are nothing that I didn’t already know and believe.  The difference, is that in my heart – I know that there HAS to be a change of direction in my actions and activities to make true movement towards my happiness within.  Seeing the goal, allows me to create the means for my journey.

My stated goals below are intentionally broad at the moment.  End goals, and the means by which they are achieved, and the journey to get there are all separate things – yet blend together to be what we call “life”.

Your mileage will vary from every other person’s mileage on this planet.  What I do, works for me – and I glean ideas from others, that allow me to vary my life experiences without getting stuck in a rut.

Set a “life purpose” for myself.   Mine is simple.  As I feel it should be.  I’ll state it here – because I feel that others could benefit by doing a self-evaluation of their own life path to come up with their own life-purpose.  What I have as a life purpose, is not necessarily what anyone else should have.  But it’s MY purpose.  For me – it is simply – “To become one with the creative divine within”. What does this mean?  Easy.  To live my life so that my actions expound the unconditional Love (yes – with a capital “L”) found with an open-heart.  To live with compassion towards others, and to serve in a selfless manner when and where I can.  I have found that to this point (so far) – when I live my life towards my “life purpose” – the little grungy details seem to fall into place.

Realistically – I raise my head up, and look around to see where I am at in life.  I don’t like what I see that I have surrounded myself with.  Huge city, mortgage, consumerism-based living and spending (and the associated debt), and really not much closer to happiness and joy within than I was 5-6 years ago when we made our original goals of a “Bohemian Lifestyle”.

My “awakening” happened recently.  While I have been studying and practicing a particular spiritual path for the last 1.5 years – I recently took the opportunity to visit a spiritual retreat that was created for the purpose of “seekers” to search within, serve, and to grow spiritually.

When visiting this place, I was thrown into awareness of how little is REALLY needed to survive as humans.  Food.  Shelter.  Clothing.  That’s *IT*.  More can be considered to be indulgent.

Do we *really* need to eat out 3-4 times a week?  Why do I need another _xxxx_?  Heck, another?  Why do I need _xxx_ at all?.  (fill in the blank with ANY of our consumer-oriented spending habits that we have been taught is good for us).

It’s time to downsize.  I am SO fortunate that in my life – I have learned to do “okay” with a low income.  One of my attachments in my current life, though, is the “crap”, though, that pollutes my space.     I can only be accountable to myself for my life changes towards my goals.  A focus on ridding my life of my debt will be a huge weight off of my shoulders.  I had that weight lifted years ago – however, I slowly put it all back onto myself.  Time to reverse that!  A cluttered space indicates a cluttered life.  Clear my space; Clear my mind; Clear my heart.  that’s my mantra lately.

Live smaller now, to allow myself to live bigger.  (scroll down – there’s more!)

Live my life with a focus on gratitude and thankfulness.  The weekend I stayed at the retreat – I was able to both serve to help feed community, as well as helping to physically serve every one of the people that came through – by adding a portion of the cooked and blessed food to each plate for each person as they walked through.  When EVERY one of the 200+ people in the food-line looks you in the eye to tell you “thank you” or to offer a greeting/thankful comment from the path that they are on – it hits home – that I am assisting and joining forces to serve the basic needs of someone.  And by whatever path that they have walked in this life, they are truly, and heartfelt in their gratitude for the food that has been prepared for them, and offered to them for their daily sustenance.  That same gratitude is in my heart – and heretofore shall be experienced in my actions.  Not to please anyone outside of myself – but to fulfill the happiness that comes to myself when I help others.  No-one but myself needs to know my joy – but the smile on my face as I serve as I can – shall be but one of the outward showings of my gratitude.

(again – scroll down – there’s more to read!)

 

 

Live my life with a smaller impact on the Earth.   This falls right into place with reducing as much as possible the consumerism that we have grown up with.  Being taught since birth that we need “this” or “that”.  That we need to get a high-paying job so that we can have more things in life to spend that money on.  When the decluttering of one’s space happens – it opens space in my life to be filled with the true happiness activities.  When the bloated consumerism is  put to bay by our open and TRUE loving heart,and the actions of our lives support the goals of the Heart – then we naturally do our part to have a smaller footprint on our planet.  We *thoughtfully* step with each step in our life, and make our choices of living in a manner that benefits our future generations.

(again – scroll down – there’s more to read!)


I have my own ideas and plans on achieving these directions in my life.  Talking and theorizing, though, are a completely different thing from truly LIVING and TAKING ACTION – to walk my talk.

It’s time to walk.  There’s work to be done on me – and only *I* can do that work.  I have recently named my ‘home” by an Indian tradition.  “Parivartana kē Bīja Dham”  The name does not apply to the physical home that I live in – it is the name I place on the home in my heart.  “Parivartana kē Bīja Dham”  (loosely) translates to English as: “Home of Seeds for Transformation (or Change)”.  The transformation that occurs as a movement of life, based on a realization and work of personal ethics for myself.

That’s MY packet of seeds to plant, nurture, and grow in MY heart and MY life.   My “Parivartana kē Bīja Dham

Namaste’

Storage Building – Used as a Tiny House – Backyard Apartment

Storage Building – Used as a Tiny House – Backyard Apartment
Storage Building – Used as a Tiny House – Backyard Apartment

Over 10 years ago, I started, marketed, worked, built, and completely ran (with an occasional helper) a company dedicated to building storage sheds in the Dallas metroplex.  The photos below are one of the larger buildings that I built – that was later renovated to be a back-yard apartment.  The construction photos below show the process up until the point that the city approved the building as built per their issued permit for a “portable building /outbuilding /storage shed”.  All rules and laws were adhered to by me for the construction of this building.  After the permit / inspection approval… the homeowner contracted with “someone” for some additional upgrades to the structure.

16×20 Organizer – Built by Rex Smith

At Customer’s Request:
  • Upgraded all siding to HardiPanel siding
  • Upgraded to 5 skids instead of the standard 3 skids
  • Plastic sheet vapor barrier laid in advance of building the building
  • Ridge vent as well as end-vents installed on front and back
  • Primed and painted body of building as well as the trim
  • Pressure-treated ramp
  • Anchor kit (per Garland city ordinance for buildings under 400′ Sq.)

Unofficial Upgrades:100_1904

I can also attest to the fact that after this building was built, interior was finished out with electrical outlets and a breaker box for the building.  A few windows and a window a/c unit was installed, and a proper French-door for entry was installed.   The interior walls (and roof-line) were insulated, and drywall paneling was installed, and taped/bedded… I’m pretty sure that the homeowner was using the building not for “storage” but as a rental “apartment”.  A total of 320 square feet – this is rather large for a “tiny house”.

  • The Empty Yard
  • The Empty Yard
  • Here's where the shed will go
  • Here's where the shed will go
  • Vapor barrier laid out, and lumber staged
  • Spliced 4x4 PT Skids
  • Floor Framing in place
  • Deck laid, walls framed & sheathed, and rafters staged
  • Rafters being assembled
  • Walls up and set square
  • Walls up and squared
  • Walls up and squared
  • Hanging the rafters
  • Hanging the rafters
  • Hanging the rafters
  • Rafters hung
  • Rafters hung
  • Rafters hung
  • Rafters hung
  • Roof sheathed, tar-papered, and shingling begun
  • Roof sheathed, tar-papered, and shingling begun
  • Roof sheathed, tar-papered, and shingling begun
  • Roof ready to trim and install ridge vent
  • Roof trimmed.
  • Complete after painting
  • full screen slider
  • Complete after painting
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Back to Basics

Back to Basics

In the beginning (2009) it was more a whimsical idea that we had daydreamed about.  We put our desires and intentions out to the universe and a year later started a business, Bohemian Utopia.

Now, in the beginning Bohemian Utopia was nothing more than us purchasing free-trade, hippie wear and reselling it at weekend fairs and festivals.  We drove all over the state of Texas and learned a LOT about vending.  It was exhausting work with minimal, if any, return on investment.  Moreover, we were limited in where we could sell because we did not make the items we were selling.  After about four months and the onset of the hottest summer in Texas history we scrapped it and went back to our regular means of income.

Several years later, and both of us on our own paths in life, we again seek, journey through, and create our own personal Bohemian Utopia for ourselves.  Truly – personally reinvented.

At the end of 2014, and entering 2015 I have shed a great many things – and will continue to do so on a personal and physical level over the next several years. Things that were (and may be) detrimental to my spirit will be dropped – I and am now on a mission of re-discovering myself and my life passions and skills.

My perception of what is important and what is needed is clearer than ever before.  I have adopted the practice of gratitude and it has returned to me in the form of peace.  I have become more mindful of my thoughts and feelings and denounced stress as an option in my life.   I have set a “life purpose” for myself – and have learned to recognize universal abundance and practice the law of attraction so my needs manifest easily.  I have challenged myself each day to live more frugally and realized I do not want for much.  I have chosen humble work that is close to the earth or within my community, farming, beekeeping, construction work, and doing odd jobs for honest, well intended people.  I have grown to view myself as a viable, creative force of nature and seek to share who I am with others in hopes they will recognize the same qualities within themselves.

Bohemian Utopia – Live Free! Embrace your Freedom to Be!

Rex