The pace of time…..

Ticking away the moments....

Despite the many time saving devices, instant communication and technology that allows us to do things NOW, we often complain of not having time, the pace of everyday life and the speed of the years flying by. The paradox is the more labour saving, time saving devices we have the less free time we seem to have for ourselves.

Remember a time before email, mobile phones, Blackberry and iPhones? Remember when we were content to wait 3 working days for a letter to be sent by mail or when we left the office on a Friday and that was where the work stayed – not coming with us on a laptop or being messaged on a Saturday morning when at your kids football game. Remember when we had to wait for Thursday’s paper to see what was on TV for the week or Friday’s Gig Guide to decide what we were going to do on the weekend?

Is this what we mean by the ‘good old days’ and what our parents mean when they say the pace of yesteryear was slower more measured and relaxed? Yes, we can turn the technology off but do we dare – even for a day?

There’s no denying the immense benefits that instant communication provides to us. Its influence on us is a result, not a cause – the result of an unseen accelerating process taking place within ourselves, a recalibration of our own expectations.

We still have 365 days a year, 7 days a week, 24 hours in a day and 60 minutes in an hour. That hasn’t changed in the last couple of thousand years.

We can accept the effect of technology with its instant communication, the technical metallisation of so many human activities that previously required at least some physical presence, or any of the other advancements of life that are being brought about by the new technologies.

These are, more often than not, good things but we need to consider how much of this progress is accompanied by the fact that we need less and less conscious attention to perform their activities and lead our lives. Thereby the feeling of the perpetually increasing speed of life.

Will we, like Neo in The Matrix, wake in an artificial cocoon to find that life is just an illusion? It’s as if each of us lives in a personalised prison that feels like home, living separate deluded realities linked by collective karma into one ‘reality’.

The effects of advancing technology, for all the promise it offers the world has, to many people, placed the instant satisfaction of desire above the art of living. To be present, truly present, is to have conscious attention. How many forms of technology are within your grasp right now?

Does electronic communication replace the physical? Our family car was a place of discussion, laughter and sharing. Now only silence as my three children, iPod’s firmly in place are texting, twittering or in my sons case gaming on his Nintendo.

It is not, therefore, the pace of change that is the source of our problem of time. It’s our reaction to it and the way we allow it to seamlessly influence our lives. Enjoy the many benefits technology provides us but also know when to take life ‘off line’, slow down and smell the roses.


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