Madame Blossom's Book of Poems

Sunday, January 29, 2012

information or distraction

Edward Hallowell, a psychiatrist, was quoted in the book (page 81) 'The Lost Art of Reading - David L Ulin', as saying, "We have a generation of people who... are so busy processing information from all directions they are losing the tendency to think and feel. Much of what they are exposed to is superficial. People are sacrificing depth and feeling, and becoming cut off and disconnected from other people."

I hate to think that my blog would be a source of distraction without meaning, in these internet world of information, where information itself is a source of distraction, with no real benefit. Mostly short, some sporadic, without any real conscious intent to contribute in a positive way, but just as an internet way of saying 'I was here!'.

However, I'm not of the opinion that something important or relevant, must consist of 7000 words at least. Rasulullah SAW, did not say words of advice on specific events that could produce a book - most of it ARE short information - but they are RELEVANT information that if pondered upon and/or acted upon will make us a better person.

I remember how a priest turned Muslim (Dr Jerald) answered the question of one nun, who attended the talk about Early Christianity. The nun asked him to comment about the phrase in the Bible (John 30:10) 'I and the Father are one' with regards to Jesus (A.S.)

His answer was short. 'One. One in what? In body? In mission? In vision?' Then silence.

I felt awed. It was a short answer that demands the questioner to think. Sometimes there is no point, in making a point, if the questioner will not think. The answer was a question that the nun needed to ask herself - about what she truly sincerely know and believe in - in those words.

The problem with current information is not really that it is short - shorter than a book. The issues are that :

a) there are so many information out there, and most people don't bother to be choosy about what they read or take in.
b) they are taking it in like snacks, without much thought, and it does not satiate the intellect. They don't give themselves time and space to absorb, to think, to change/act, before they go on to the next information.

Books help to prolong the time spent to absorb an idea or information - throughout the time the person is reading the book.

So what is my take on the vast information available? Firstly, to be choosy about what information we feed our minds with - must be beneficial to us or our community. We also need to give ourselves time and space to absorb that information, to think and to decide, what we will do about it.

If we receive an information, for which there is nothing we can do to make improvements in any way at all, then, that piece of information is useless.

Did you just finish reading this post? Don't read anything else just yet.

Stop... and ponder first.


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