Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Metrospiritual

Gwyneth Paltrow is one. So are Angelina Jolie and Leonardo di Caprio. Chances are your bikram yoga teacher has the major characteristics and so does the guy who makes your fruit smoothie at Jamba Juice. Donna Karan is totally in on it. The salesperson who helps you find the right Botanical Kinetics moisturizer at Aveda is probably one, along with your eco-tourism guide at Costa Rican surf camp. Richard Gere may be the proto-one and Uma Thurman was pretty much born into it. What is influencing Hollywood stars and Wal-Mart shoppers, fashionistas and Filene’s basement-dwellers alike? It’s called metrospirituality, and chances are you already know or even lead the life of a metrospiritual.

Do you go out of your way to buy organic food? Have you thought about the fung shui in your home? Have you tried yoga, belly-dancing, or surfing recently? Are you attracted to traditional crafts from other cultures or have you started knitting? Do you own a Prius or have you thought about buying a hybrid car? Are you a tea connoisseur or an organic wine- and beer-drinker? Is there a certain aromatherapy scent that brings you comfort, especially in candle form? If most of your answers are yes, then count yourself among the growing numbers of metrospirituals—the kinder, gentler post-Yuppies who want to treat the earth and native cultures with respect, connect with their inner source and inspiration, test their bodies and expand their minds with ancient physical practices—and do it all with serious style.

Jim Twitchell, a professor of English at the University of Florida and author of many books about consumer culture, including "Adcult USA:The Triumph of Advertising in America" (1995), attributes the demand for luxury goods to a need for salvation or epiphany through consuming. Throughout history, Twitchell argues, "The primary deliverer of sensations was the church. That’s where you went to have an epiphany. … The sensations of luxury mirror the sensations of epiphany—the ability to give the consumer the sensation that I’ve come to the end of the line, I’m saved, I’m there, I don’t have to wrestle any more." The metrospiritual takes luxury-buying to a new level--reaching outward for connection to the planet and to each other. According to Sharon Lee of youth-trend forecasting firm Look-Look, "There’s lots of desire to be spiritual and have more meaning than a commercial, purely secular lifestyle provides. And there’s a smorgasbord of product offerings that have gradations of spirituality woven into them." The words you see and hear again and again on the many products that help define and support the metrospiritual lifestyle—like Fresh’s Crème Ancienne which is made by hand at a monastery in the Czech Republic--are "calm," "enrich," "renew," "inspire," "experience," "connect," "heal," "ancient" and "conscious," for starters.

Virtue is a key feature of the metrospiritual lifestyle, and those in the fold expect it not only of themselves but also from the companies to which they give their business.

To read more click on the link
Also take a quiz to find out if you are metrospiritual. Here were my results:
19 - 27
You are almost metrospiritual but you need a few more notches on the hipness meter before you can consider yourself a true metrospiritual. Your values are in line with metrospiritual thinking, but your lifestyle choices don't always match up. Either that, or you just can't afford a hybrid Lexus.

3 comments:

Becky Gaddis said...

Bethany,
I like organic because I don't want to eat pesticides although I can't buy it all the time because it's more expensive.

Here's my score...

10 - 18
You may lead a spiritual life, but your interests are more 1969 than 2005. You prefer an earthy lifestyle to the city chic way of life that metrospirituals follow. Metrospiritual values like preserving the earth and using natural or organic products are probably important to you, but you're more conservative about the way you reveal these values.

MOM said...

I, like Becky, am a 17 - apparently more 1969 (when my first child was born!!! ) than current time!.... doesn't surprise me much. I consider myself organic interested and recycling maniac but not too commercially oriented. I don't wear label clothing and could care less where I buy my clothes but recycling is important and I play with fung shui!

Iz said...

19 for me...guess that's why we can be friends. ;) Miss you, Bethany. Love reading this blog!

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