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Modern Survivalism Tenet Number One

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  • Modern Survivalism Tenet Number One

    Article is at:

    The survivalist community is often perceived as a bunch of gloom and doom types sitting on a pile of MREs, ammunition and guns in some far out corner of the North West. Of course the survivalist is also typecast as expecting TEOTWAWKI (the end of the world as we know it) to occur any day now, in fact he is actually hoping for it. Honestly it is time for this stereotype to die a deserving death. Modern survivalists are many things but very few are actually concerned about the infamous black helicopters or FEMA Camps. Most instead are simply realists who understand that sometimes things do go wrong and it is better to be prepared than to expect someone else to solve your problems.

    The real key to modern survivalism is the Modern Survival Philosophy which is a group ten key principles that guide the actions of many survivalists. While all are important it is tenet number one that really sets the stage for separating the doomsday stereotype from the reality. Survivalists are generally thought of as people who prepare to deal with disasters, shortages and anything that disrupts society. Modern survivalists do this but they do so in a way that improves their lives even if nothing major ever goes wrong.

    For example many survival minded individuals grow gardens and develop more permanent food producing crops like fruit trees, berry bushes etc. on their property. They generally stick to organic production methods, focus on water harvesting and attempt to maximize production per square meter. This is a classic survival technique designed to remain sustainable if anything hits from simple loss of personal income all the way up to a collapse of US infrastructure. So yes in the event of economic collapse this makes a tremendous amount of sense as a modern survival tactic.

    Now let’s examine the other side of the issue. What if we never have an economic collapse, what if there are no food shortages in the next 30 years and what if the survivalist never even has a layoff to contend with? Flat out for the foreseeable future absolutely nothing goes wrong. If you have your property landscaped with sustainable organic food producing crops are you not still better off?

    Consider that by setting up sustainable and productive organic agriculture that your property value will be increased if for no other reason than environmentalism is a huge movement right now. You will spend less money over the years on buying food which can be saved, invested, used to reduce debt, etc. Further your health will be improved by eating high quality fresh produce not to mention the exercise you get. Of course the list of benefits from having a solid sustainable editable landscape on your property is exhaustive and could go on a lot further but hopefully this begins to make the point.

    Let’s examine more briefly a few more common things that survival minded individuals do and consider what benefit they have to us even if nothing ever goes wrong.

    One key to modern survivalism is debt elimination. In the event of a disaster from personal up to global those in less debt are better suited to handle what comes their way. Yet even without any type of disaster having low to no debt will result in a much more sustainable and rewarding lifestyle.

    Having firearms and the training to use them is useful in anything from a garden variety home invasion to a true societal breakdown and it can be the difference between life and death. Yet if nothing goes wrong the armed citizen is still more confident and makes decisions based on reality vs. fear.

    Storing extra food is “Survivalism 101” and there are many things that can go wrong from a personal up to a global level where such stored food is potentially life saving. Yet by following the mantra of “store what you eat and eat what you store” modern survivalists actually spend less money via a classic method known as “capital deferral”. This is accomplished by purchasing what will be used anyway at today’s prices to beat inflation, much the way Southwest Airlines does by purchasing fuel contracts while prices are lower.

    This concept simply continues though just about every facet of survivalism. If you put in solar panels and/or wind generators and you are ready to handle a black out no mater what the cause or how long it lasts. Yet even if nothing goes wrong and you pay less for you electric bill and increase your property value.

    Learn to “live off the land” with hunting, fishing and foraging and you will be more likely to survive a disaster but if nothing goes wrong you are enjoying the outdoors, getting exercise, saving money and eating better quality food all at the same time.

    This formula is practically bullet proof as long as you keep the first tenet in mind as you make lifestyle and purchasing decisions, again that tenet is,

    “Everything You Do Should Improve Your Position in Life Even If Nothing Goes Wrong”

    This keeps you from using survivalism as a convenient excuse to blow money and go into debt, which would violate one of the other tenets anyway. For instance fishing is a great way to add another low cost protein source to the household if done with practical and modestly priced equipment. Yet if you go out and purchase a 25,000 dollar bass boat and fancy equipment you will never get an ROI on your production. Now if you want a nice boat, this is America, there is nothing wrong with that but if you want to be a survivalist, save your money and buy what is adequate with cash. One is version is an expensive hobby, the other is a way to improve your lifestyle.

    It is really a simple core guiding principle, each time you are making a decision about where to spend time, money or resources you simply ask the question, “Will this action improve my ability to live a sustainable lifestyle if we have a disaster or even if we don’t”. When the answer is yes you make it part of your survival planning. If the answer is no, that doesn’t mean you don’t do it, it simply means it is a luxury not an investment in an asset that provides for your future and hence you prioritize it accordingly.

    There is a fundamental reality that most Americans are living beyond their means in an unsustainable way. They are one or two paychecks from poverty, consuming food that is unhealthy, working far to hard for far to little and above all many are miserable. Yes miserable! They work at a job they hate, drive on a commute they hate even more and give up the best parts of their lives simply to earn enough money to pay the interest on their debts. They then retire with a social security check that keeps them just to the south side of the poverty line and by the time most 30-40 somethings retire they won’t even get that.

    The modern survivalist simply realizes that is not good enough, that life is precious and as humans we have a fundamental liberty that many choose to sell for far to low of a price. The good news is you have a choice, you can choose to walk though life with a credit card at the ready or you can choose to live a life that can be sustained in both good times and bad. It all starts with asking the simple question, “will this choice improve my long term sustainability”, on a daily basis. Simply asking that question will put you on the path to becoming a modern survivalist.
    "If Howdy Doody runs against him, I'm voting for the puppet." - SkyOwl's Wife, 2012

  • #2
    Very well said. Even though I recently lost my job, I have zero debt. Sold my expensive home 2 years ago thank goodness and my vehicles are paid off and my CC's are clean. This has helped me gather what I need without stressing about those other things. I am not panicking any longer about 'what may be', I know I can survive anywhere and have the means and knowledge to do so. Getting layed off may have been a blessing in disguise in certain ways.


    • #3
      You are in a good place financially!

      Aye, it was a good article, thought the Colonists would like it too.

      Here's a good FR thread, that I enjoyed, also:
      "If Howdy Doody runs against him, I'm voting for the puppet." - SkyOwl's Wife, 2012


      • #4
        Thank you for the great post. Some times after reading post on these sites I feel like I am doing something wrong. I have not built a bunker or a compound or stocked a BOL or stocked a warehouse full of ammo and MRE's. We are trying to simplify our lives in that we are going back to the old ways of living with the land and off the land. Providing for our selves and being self-sufficient. We like many others got a late start on this life style and now have some bills to pay down but now we look at every thing we purchase differently ie. do we really need it or just want it and will it make our lives more sustainalbe? If not we don't buy it. And the truth is should some thing bad happen, between gardening, livestock, hunting, trapping, foraging and all of the other preps we have made we should be ok. And a side note is we feel good about what we are doing and our life style.


        • #5
          This is pretty much what we do. I think that most preppers do this. I, like many have balked at the word "survivalist" because it brings up the image of guys who have war induced PTSD, wear cammo, live in a tunnel/bunker surounded by a zillion rounds of ammo and living on spam and beans.:eek:
          That's not really fair to survivalists, but I think that is what most people think.

          I am a prepared person, who realizes that "doo doo happens".:D We are simplifying our lives, getting what we can to reduce our living expenses. In 10 years, hubby retires and I don't think we will have much income (yes, there is SS, 401K, pension. BUT we all know that won't cut it anymore)

          Very good post!


          • #6
            Excellent Post Wife! Thank you. Truely! I got paid on Wednesday and paid my bills, which aren't many put a little in savings (not in the bank mind you) and got gas. It's gone. I did purchase a few items for the "shelves" but not much. The costs are rising, sneaking up each day. It was a little scarey this morning when I hit my knees and realized that I need more than what I can realilistically can do. My garden this year needs to sustain me more than ever before. I have casually done my gardening each year with not much thought of "survival" in a life or death situation. To be truely honest I"m a little nervous that I cannot do enough. I have tried to talk to my family to get some help with things like stocking and the garden and they're all happy that I'm doing a "family Garden" but no one seems to want to help with the financing of it or the work. Some things you just don't want to do by seed. This is going to be an issue for me I think. But I will keep on going no matter what. I am just a little discouraged today. but it's Friday and that's a plus no matter how you look at it! And.....Monday is a holiday!
            Your opponet got stronger today, did you?
            {{unswydd-Of One Purpose}}


            • #7
              Unswydd -- Don't be discouraged. I have less than 1/4 acre, mostly shaded, and have had to struggle with finding enough ground to plant anything!! That being said, I will have plenty of squash/tomatoes/cukes to satisfy our family. Not enough to sustain our family through the winter, by any means.. lol. But enough to give me the opportunity to learn canning this summer, and practice other means of preservation. My point is, I cannot do what I want right now, that is plant a massive garden and put away enough to feed the town, but I can take advantage of what I have and use it to further the cause. For me, changing to a new lifestyle will be challenging at best, and I think small steps will grow strong roots. Your posts are an encouragement to me... Have a great weekend!


              • #8
                I would remind you all of something you know somewhere deep down. If TSHTF, in a worst-case scenario, chaos will very likely ensue very rapidly and be a cascading calamity.
                1. The Gimme-Folk (GF) will empty the stores immediately by hook or crook, they "deserve it" dontcha know.

                2. Shortly, those slightly prepared will run out of supplies and then, they too, will be GF. The stores will already be empty, so prepped people will be the only targets available.

                3. Some very prepared people will have been "visited" by the GF and will now be either dead or also GF.

                4. Then throw in 20 million illegals moving south, trying to get home. They will slash and burn to take what they want on the way. They will be the most prepared for night/stealth movement, it's how they GOT here, more than likely.

                5. The FedGov or LocalGovs will declare martial law. In places small enough or lightly populated enough that the Govs can enforce it, you WILL be compelled to "share" your supplies. You will very likely be a hoarder (criminal) if you don't.

                So, what to do? Give up? HELL no! It WILL take luck to survive, and will very likely take a blend of all of the plans we've read about here.

                Psychologists have long known that "day dreamers", those who think about situations and what they'd do in this one or that one, do absolutely the best in sudden-chaos or emergency situations. That means that Colonists will be most prepared to survive in this chaos. We have been "day dreamers" about all of this. Chins up and keep prepping and continue to be DAY DREAMERS!
                "If Howdy Doody runs against him, I'm voting for the puppet." - SkyOwl's Wife, 2012


                • #9
                  Yeah - what Wife said! Just by planning, you are ahead of the curve. You try and do things, just not enough to make you happy. Keep working at it, it will come along. Save seeds and until THE day, you can buy. Practice with a small garden so that you understand all about gardening and canning and drying. Every little bit helps.