For the most part I think there are two basic trains of thought individuals have when you tell them you live in a tipi, or other methods of alternative housing. A: they think it's crazy, stupid, barbaric, undesirable, uncomfortable and reserved for the marginalized in society. or B: they think it's pretty cool, and they're interested in knowing more about it, the hows and whys. For the people in camp A, it's most likely that you won't change there minds, and you're better off not trying, for people in camp B, here's my why.
For a while now, maybe a year or so, I've been thinking of ways to live more unconventionally. for me that means cheaper, lighter, smaller, simpler. Anything from tiny houses to tents. I'm of the mind set that it gets to the point where the stuff you own ends up owning you. It's crazy to think of all the things people in developed countries see as necessities for everyday life. How things like indoor heating and cooling and plumbing are no longer comforts, but necessary and if you think of living without them you're putting yourself in danger. humans survive and adapt, we haven't lost that ability, only the knowledge of how.
With that said, I am by no means roughing it, sacrificing all comfort and exposing myself to a life of masochism to prove a point. I don't have electricity or indoor plumbing, but I have access to it on a daily bases. I'm not living in a tipi to see how much I can endure. I'm living in a tipi because when I'm able to minimize the noise around me I'm able to enjoy the noises I do hear. I'm living in a tipi because it's what I want to do, as much as some people want to live in multi-million dollar mansions. I'm not giving something up, I'm gaining the life I want to live. I'm taking control, and questioning all of the things I'm supposed to want and need. I'm rejecting the idea that you need to aspire to own a home with a 30 year fixed mortgage and get a job you hate so you can pay it off. I'm rejecting the idea that the more stuff you have, the more money you make the more successful and happier you will be. I think I'm lucky, very lucky. The things I want don't require me working my whole life lusting after some arbitrary monetary currency to obtain them.
I just want to enjoy the world around me, why separate myself from that world with four walls, a floor and a ceiling, when I can live in a cone made of 12 sticks and a canvas cover with a whole in the top?