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Decluttering? Give Things Away!

Aug 29, 2022
a cluttered collection of books, a coffee mug, and various collectibles and papers. Photo by daniellajardim, Ella Jardim on unsplash

Photo by Ella Jardim on Unsplash

At all times, contentment and moderation, benevolence and fellow feeling, sacrifice and reliance on the Almighty are qualities that befit the God-fearing soul.

The forces of materialism promote a quite contrary line of thinking: that happiness comes from constant acquisition, that the more one has the better, that worry for the environment is for another day.

The Universal House of Justice, 1 March 2017, To the Bahá’ís of the World

by Christine Muller

Are you decluttering your home? Remember that the production of things requires precious natural resources and contributes to environmental pollution and climate change, and often to human exploitation as well. So, when you don’t need things anymore, try to find others who would appreciate them. It’s again a win-win solution—what is environmentally sound is also directly beneficial for humans.

Do you have unused clothing, bakeware or other kitchen items, plant pots, fabrics, blankets, children’s toys etc.? Give them to friends or a charitable organization that will distribute or sell them at low cost. If clothing is torn or stained, you can recycle it. However, getting rid of things should not tempt us to buy new “stuff”.

Useful Resources

The Story of Stuff” (20 minute video)

The Story of Stuff: A Baha’i-inspired Program for Youth” (website)


Christine Muller, Teacher of Music and the Environment

Board Secretary, International Environment Forum

I was interested in environmental issues already at a young age and became a Bahá’í when I was 17, which was the beginning of a life-long study of the Bahá’í Faith. As the environmental crisis was worsening, I began to systematically study climate change at a time when not much information was easily available. I also searched the Bahá’í teachings for a spiritual solution to the climate crisis. At that time, climate change was not known to most people and there were no educational materials available. That’s why I wrote Scientific and Spiritual Dimensions of Climate Change – an Interfaith Study Course, which the International Environment Forum posted in 2009. I joined the Wilmette Institute as support faculty for its Sustainable Development course in 2011 and created its Climate Change course the following year. I also teach a course on climate change for the Environmental Sciences Department of the Baha’i Institute of Higher Education (BIHE) in Iran. I have served on the board of RI Interfaith Power&Light for more than a decade. In recent years, much of my time is spent serving the Bahá’í-inspired International Environment Forum ( as its secretary.  My formal academic background is in music, and I enjoy part-time piano teaching, playing and - when there is time - composing music. A recent composition is Humans on Earth – a Ballad of Our Time for two singers, string orchestra, piano, and percussion. Its lyrics include quotations from scientific sources and the Bahá’í Writings. Christine’s articles on BahaiTeachings.orgSee Faculty Bio


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