A while back, I wrote about Mark Boyle (aka The Moneyless Man) and his year-long experimentation of living life without money in the UK. It seems that this phenomenon is catching because a recent article on Yahoo Voices featured a Berlin couple and their 18-month-old who live entirely on the goodwill of others.
Raphael Fellmer, along with his wife, Nieves Palmer, and their young daughter, Alma Lucia, stopped using money as a form of activism. They wanted to point out that overconsumption leads to unnecessary waste which eventually leads to environmental destruction. By foraging food from grocery store dumpsters and acquiring free lodging by housesitting or couchsurfing, the family of three has most of their basic needs met.
The young couple and many others are finding it increasingly easier to live without currency by bartering, skillsharing, cleaning, and creating urban homesteads in which they grow their own food, harvest rainwater, can and preserve food, and sew their own clothes. The resources that they need to survive are acquired through free stores (much like a thrift store but where nothing has a price tag) and websites like Freecycle.org and Craigslist.org.
So, this poses a question that I’d love to hear the answer to. Could you see yourself and your family living without money? Are you the type of person that is resourceful and not afraid to trade your tools, skills, and expertise with other people in your community? Are you a Do-It-Yourself dude or diva? If you are, there’s a good chance you could survive a money-free experiment the way that Mark Boyle and Nieves Palmer and family have.
Daniel Suelo has been living without money since 2000. The book, The Man Who Quit Money, highlights his cashless lifestyle. Dwelling part-time in a cave outside of Moab, Utah, Suelo acquires everything he needs through his own efforts. There’s no bartering where he is concerned. He lives off the land in the most literal sense, often eating road kill because it’s what’s readily available.
Other men and women who have tried living without money around the globe include:
- Heidemarie Schwermer, the inspiration behind the film Living without Money.
- Joseph Garner who lived a month of money-free living thanks to Craigslist and created the film Craiglist Joe documenting his experience.
- Mike McIntyre who hitchhiked across America meeting generous people who offered him rides, food, and shelter. His book titled, The Kindness of Strangers: Penniless Across America, chronicles everything he encountered along the way.
We know that you can live on a tight budget but could you completely live without money? It’s a challenge few are up to but one that provides freedom beyond compare.
Charissa is into frugal living and saving money.