Dr. David Shi is President Emeritus of Furman University and author of the leading multi-volume text on American history in print today. The Simple Life is his classic history of the "plain living and high thinking" tradition in America, the inner life of the American experiment represented by the Innermost House Foundation. Dr. Shi traces the tradition of intentional simplicity from its origins in ancient Iranian, Hebrew, Chinese, Greek, Roman and Christian traditions, through the American colonists, Jefferson, Emerson, Thoreau, Muir, and more. There is no single book that introduces the historical context of our work so well or so compellingly. Dr. Shi establishes the ideal of reflective simplicity as fundamental to the inner life of most philosophical and religious traditions, as well as being, from the beginning, a deeply provocative American ideal.