Mark Sundeen

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since Apr 30, 2013
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Recent posts by Mark Sundeen

Great story link, Jeff. Thanks!
7 years ago
Jeff, I don't know who--if anyone--is joining Suelo's group, or how they would respond to a life threatening illness. Ultimately it's the thing people, including myself, are most curious about. As I put it to Suelo: are you actually willing to die for this belief system? He has said that he would accept medical care if it was freely given by a doctor or nurse. He has also said he wouldn't want to be a burden to society and thinks that when his time comes, he will accept that. There's no saying what he will do when push comes to shove. Although he has lived without money happily for 12 years, he has made no vow or promise to do it another 12 years or 12 days. One thing I can say about him is that he honestly doesn't seem to be afraid of dying, which struck me as different than most Americans and Westerners that I know. Thanks for the question!
7 years ago
What I learned from working with Suelo was not, as I expected, that money was bad and that we should feel terrible for ever using or having any. Suelo is not a scold, and he doesn't live this way as if wearing a hairshirt. When people say, Don't you miss having money? he says something like: Does a bird miss having money? In other words, he doesn't feel like he's suffering, or going without. Instead he feels MORE FREE than ever, because instead of doing what was expected of him, he followed his heart, which was telling him to follow the teachings from Buddha, Christ, LaoTze about freeing yourself spiritually. When people ask him advice, he doesn't say quit money, or even use less money, he says, spend the time to learn what your heart wants, and follow it. So that I think is what has influenced me most about him. What I never wanted to do in this life is to work at something I hated just for money. I've been blessed to be able to work at what I love--writing, currently--and find that enough money follows so that I don't have to go out and do something else. (I also teach writing part time, and that's also something I enjoy). I've dedicated most of my life to doing things that pay poorly or not at all, and hanging out with Suelo gave me confidence to pursue those things more, to not worry if what I like isn't someone else's idea of success, and to have faith that if I follow that right livlihood, the finances will work themselves out one way or another. Great question, Kelly. Thanks!
7 years ago
As for your second question--do i feel compelled to give something back--Suelo doesn't believe in barter, either. His giving up of money is a way of being free of not just monetary debt, but all other types of debt and obligation. So he would be uncomfortable if I said, "Thanks for giving me your life story for this book, and in return, i want to give you a piece or land" or something like that. I don't think he would accept it. His goal is to give freely with expectation of getting something in return, and to accept freely without obligation to pay back. So, no, I don't feel compelled to do anything for him. That said, he and I became close friends during the writing of the book, and even more so during our two-month book tour. And if I ever found out he needed help, I'd be quick to offer it.
7 years ago
I'm still in touch with him and will likely see him this summer in Montana. He is trying to start of roaming community of like minded people. Here's what he posted:

Community Forming
Suelo Posted On 5/29/2013, Last Updated On 5/30/2013
A wandering moneyless tribe! Sharing in community my experience living without money for 12 years. To be launched at the 2013 Montana Rainbow Gathering. We are accepting folks willing to give up all money, and also looking for communities we can be of free service to on our migratory path and to network with.

Two-fold mission:
1) Practice gift economy by not having, accepting, or using money, freely giving and receiving, offering free services to individuals, towns, organic farms, intentional communities, churches, ashrams, monasteries along its migratory path.
2) Raise awareness by activist example, (eg, challenging concepts of private property and returning stolen lands to native people’s stewardship, reducing stress on the environment and ending dependence on corporate trade and exploition of "third world" populations).

Prerequisite to join us: give up all money to your name, not taking or using it, to fully grasp the meaning of walking by faith (courage).

It is to run by consensus, to be ecumenical, to practice and bring to light the forgotten principles of the world's spiritual traditions (giving up possessions, doing for the sake of doing rather than for future reward).
Email Address: freemeansnomoney@gmail.com
7 years ago
Turns out, that's the topic of my NEXT book: that is, how can a family live sustainably, ethically, frugally. Watch for it in 2016
7 years ago
Daniel Suelo, the subject of the book, has not had health insurance for those 12 years. He doesn't go to doctors, but has remained healthy, which he attributes to lots of exercise, eating relatively healthy, and most of all, not worrying. He told me that if he spent all his time worrying about how he might get sick, he would likely be out of emotional balance, and would be more likely to become sick! As for me, I hear you about the fear. I personally am afraid to let my insurance go, too, for fear I'd get sick and lose my house, or worse yet, my parents would lose their house to pay my bills. Ultimately what this book is about is that fear: how has this one person managed to live in a scary world without being afraid.

By the way, here's how Suelo himself responds to that question: https://sites.google.com/site/livingwithoutmoney/Home/10--what-happens-if-you-get-sick-or-injured
7 years ago
Thanks for having me, and fire away with the questions. One clarification: I am not the man who quit money. I'm just the guy who wrote a book about him. The subject of the book is Daniel Suelo who has gone moneyless for 12 years now.
7 years ago
a. 2 or so
b. yes in a tent
c. i live in missoula and have flexible work so all of these options are fine.
d. more interested in a stationary rmh
7 years ago