Of Monks and Marie Kondo

Heidi Deddens

If you've been around Netflix this year (or a bookstore in the last four years), you've probably come across Marie Kondo, the infectiously gleeful Japanese tidying guru and mastermind behind The KonMari Method™ of home organization. Along with a host of other new minimalists, Marie Kondo has gained an audience with an unlikely message in our consumerist society: there is joy in owning fewer things.

Living with less has been a facet of some religious traditions for thousands of years, but this article by Heidi Deddens highlights how the ethos of self-help and self-promotion that permeates the new minimalism is a strange innovation that would've confounded minimalists of old, particularly Christian ones.

Read "Minimalism and Monasticism" over at Comment to find out what Marie Kondo and the desert fathers do and don't have in common. You can also read some other engaging articles on the new minimalism in Comment's Winter 2018 issue.

Pouring Coffee