E-sabbath

Do you ever get worn down by being always available via a PDA, Blackberry or a plain old cell phone? Do you marvel at how some people thrive in this high-tech 24-7 connected world? How do they do it? One young man suggests an old idea for managing himself in a high tech world.

“I send and receive hundreds of text messages a day,” says the University of New Hampshire freshman Griffin Kiritsy in a Reader’s Digest December 2007 article. Kiristy feels totally natural being electronically tethered to friends most of the day. A text message is a virtual shoulder tap among his peers; his cell is more of a long-distance intercom than a telephone. Websites aren’t just information sources; they’re gathering places. Hopping on his Xbox 360 and playing Madden NFL against a teen at home in Australia-and trash-talking him on the console’s headset-is Kiritsy’s idea of unwinding between classes. He’s on the Net for four hours a day, often generating hundreds of instant messages in a half hour while “talking” to several friends in separate, simultaneous conversations.

But never on a Sunday. “Once a week, I shut off my phone and don’t use any electronic gadgets,” the 19- year-old says. “I read, play sports, relax and just recharge.” Come Monday, Kiritsy is back to his studies-between instant messaging and posting comments on friends’ Facebook pages. After all, there’s no point in being obsessive.

The Sabbath (or Sabbat) is a weekly day of rest and worship that is observed in the Judeo-Christian faiths as well as other religions. The term derives from the Hebrew shavat, “(to) cease.” In the Biblical account, the term was first used in Genesis for the last day of creation, when God ceased from His work of creation to rest and recharge. After all there is no point in being obsessive about creating the world.

Working Journal Entry: What possible benefit might people in your life experience with 24 hours of no Internet or one day of you not creating something for business? Is one day a week without being electronically connected something you do now or something you want to consider in 2008?

 

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