Thursday, 29 December 2011

Take a Technology Sabbatical

by Elya (See all authors)

It's been a long time since I've posted on the forum. In the past two weeks I have come to the realization that I cannot be on the computer alone with internet access, despite filters and other means of prevention and discovery. So I unplugged my internet connection and my wife's computer is off and locked, so when I'm home alone I have no access.

For the first couple of days it was torture. After a week, when none of the earth shattering emails came through to tell me I'd won the lottery, I realized most of the emails were junk anyway and I was not THAT important that I had to be on call 24/7 to anybody. In fact, I realized walking in the door one day that I was immediately pulled toward going to check my emails. It made me realize that even without looking at inappropriate things, I was still addicted to the box, screen and messages. I was not living in serenity; I was imprisoned by the pull of the computer.

Today when I walk in the door, I am free of these shackles, comfortable being alone and cherish quiet time to read, play the flute, study, eat, etc. When I stay busy and have a plan toward a purpose in life that I want to achieve, it provides me with a mindful reminder that when I live in the present moment I cannot act out on my bottom line behaviors.

I predict in 2-3 years there will be a cell phone, IPad, IPod, Technology, etc. addiction that will take over our society. It has already begun in our shuls, schools, homes and work. We as a society are encouraged to MULTI-TASK or die. And this stress producer, coupled with APPS coming out of nowhere for everything, will keep us occupied and stressed out 24/7 if we don't take a break and relax mindfully.

After all, how much news, weather, traffic, talk shows, entertainment and politics do we really HAVE to know to survive in our daily lives? Take a technology sabbatical with your family and you'll find time to talk to your kids, your wife, eat together, play together and let G-d take care of your livelihood.

Life is possible without 24/7 access. You just have to realize when you're powerless over being control of every facet of your life 24/7, and freedom is just a plug away.