by Zen Gardner
Everyone experiences fear. It’s a jarring emotion that gets amplified by the reptilian fight or flight side of our human make up. The problem comes when the prompt is deliberately manufactured and therefore non-authentic, which is why the manipulators use it so frequently and to such an extent. Fear interferes with conscious awareness, clear thinking, true knowing and in turn conscious behavior and makes for a highly manipulable state of being.
It’s not only toxic and debilitating, but fear is contagious as well as addicting.
This lower level vibration of fear has many esoteric derivations and origins. Whether people are aware of the underlying spiritual nature of our Universe or not, it is profoundly real. Where we get these fear impulses is a subject unto itself that anyone on the path of truth comes upon, but we each experience these influences. One of the most profound realizations that comes from understanding fear, besides its use as a social engineering tool, is that fear is an intrinsic energy source for parasitic controllers and entities, both human and non-human. Understanding the archonic agenda as revealed by the Gnostics is essential for grasping the bigger picture.
They feed off of our energy. That realization is a powerful motivator to not give it to them. Fearing their machinations is falling into a voluntary slave mentality and literally a form of worship.
It’s time to fearlessly stand up straight and tall and starve this parasitic beast of our energy.
The Fear Syndrome – Separating Real and Unreal Threats
Society is built on fear, primarily a fear of not having enough, whether it’s money, food, protection, safety or even love. Scarcity is a very powerful tool and being used as a global weapon against humanity on a massive scale. Food and water shortages are being engineered worldwide, while the economic flow of financial resources are similarly being dried up. These are very real attacks upon humanity as are the other crippling programs such as tainted and genetically altered food, geoengineering, electrosmogging our planet, and the ongoing drug wars on the world’s populations by mind and body altering pharmaceuticals.
It may not seem to be such a nice place to live right now, but we’re here, and for a purpose. Clearly it’s not a time to fear, but it is a time to take action to both expose these programs as well as mitigate their effects upon as many as possible through information sharing, practical measures and other proactive means.
We need to separate real threats from imagined ones, including the realm of psycho-spiritual attacks and influences. Those are only as real as we allow them to manifest. We do this two ways. We might straight up succumb to the lies these influences always transmit, which only brings on more spiritual and physical servitude and power to these would-be controllers. That, or we can simply be fascinated by these dark energies and thus empowering them through our attention and therefore intention. The world’s fascination for horror and vampire films as well as gratuitous violence via “action” movies, television and murderous video games exemplifies this. The now known widespread phenomena of satanic ritual sacrifice and abuse and the elite culture of pedophilia are very clear evidence of how these entities operate. They are fundamentally vampiric, and all of this social engineering is to generate more energy for them to feed on.
Turn it off at the source – you. With that will come cutting off the TV and other channels of transmission which in turn will help identify other levels of this program, including EMF mind control technology. The ultimate level it needs to be monitored is ultimately the spiritual source, which amply this vibration and direct these programs into unawakened minds straight into the traps being used on the material level.
It may seem to be a lot to do but ultimately getting fully conscious will transcend anyone outside of this entire realm of their matrix to where it all becomes very simple.
What If? Don’t Worry, Be Conscious
Fear can manifest in a host of ways. Worry is one of the most subtle. Most don’t attach worry to outright fear, they think it’s just a mild concern. Fear is too strong of a word in their minds, which is actually a form of denial and very dangerous. Worries lead to unconscious thoughts and actions. Now if it’s a genuine concern that’s one thing, and needs to be handled, but these wrongly minimalized worries are dangerous and need to be either let go of, or taken care of.
Worry is sometimes brought on by ourselves by not acting on what we know we should be doing, or not doing. However, most worries are completely futile distractions and a total drain. As Mark Twain famously said; “I’ve had many worries in my life, most of which never happened.” These worries can hang around our heads and hearts like cling-ons just waiting for opportunities to collect or amplify a negative vibration. They’re sometimes not easy to deal with if they require some personal resolution regarding something specific we’re avoiding or feel we’re not prepared to deal with. We’re each learning to avoid, overcome and transcend induced fear, and it’s all well within anyone’s grasp.
The elites and those fully entrenched in and using this parasitic control system live in constant worry and fear, and they should. Not only are they foisting it on others and hence bathed in it, but the very real ultimate outcome of their demise and facing the consequences of their actions looms over them like a dark spectre. Why else do they feel the need for bodyguards, armed motorcades and heavily fortified dwellings? All of those with hoarded riches, as well as power, are continually afraid they’re going to lose it.
Why? Because they will lose it all, and pay a lot of other overdue karmic bills at the same time.
The Illusory Fear of Death
Another aspect is how we all rehearse what we would do in different situations. Is it worry? I think it’s only natural to our human condition to a large extent but it can be dangerous. How will we handle facing very serious health issues, or the death of a family member or our closest loved ones, or even our own “death” and transition to the next world?
It’s only a problem if we dwell on these thoughts or we come from a standpoint of fear. It’s not fear unless we haven’t transcended those issues consciously. When we come to realize what we essentially are, fear of death loses its grip. That wondrous realization of our inherent freedom and eternal nature and the reality of infinite possibility is much of what empowers this magnificent awakening humanity is undergoing. When we come to realize what we essentially are, fear of death loses its grip.
Death worship has become a societal meme. You can see it in the news, art and the entertainment industry. The truth is this has been embedded into the human fabric from our engineered inception. Just look at the world’s religions, all fixated on death. This in turn imposes not just hierarchical dependence, but shifts the focus from being here to preparing for some sort of afterlife, crippling the ability to live here fully in the moment or respond consciously to the world around us. Death fixation is an extremely strong fear-based disempowerment tool.
We can’t give our energy away, nor can they compel us to. It’s all a bluff, no matter what rages about us.
Kitty recently succinctly commented, “We can’t die. We are eternal and just passing through. The fear of death is the greatest of all the control systems, it is this fear that stops us living fully and joyfully and holds us back . Once we realise this there will be nothing to control, we can be fully human and totally divine just as we are meant to be.”
Transcending is Practical
Awakening to the realm of full on conscious awareness is the key to transcending these lower level vibrational influences. They then become increasingly evident for what they are and we can deal with them intelligently from an enlightened standpoint. When these negative vibrations arise you can then tell them apart from a real threat that needs immediate action. When we see an influence is invading our minds or simply pestering us we can either simply shun the vibration, or take spiritual action to repel such an attack if need be. But don’t give them your energy via fear, fascination and undue attention.
These outside attacks do happen. And we’ll see more of this as these last throes of the dark agenda do their best to subvert humanity into a subservient, subjugated and suppressed state.
They can come as panic attacks as some are experiencing, or a sense of dread and feeling trapped. Some can come across outright spooky is you’re sensitive or have the qualities of an empath or psychic, as many of us do. Again, these are nothing to fear. They cannot touch you, only induce fear if you let them. Some can be directly addressed and told where to go, or you may have tapped into other spiritual technologies or even outside help of some sort which is available. But ultimately it is our individual stand and remaining consciously fearless that takes care of everything.
Whatever the source, they are all based on fear, and ensuing servitude if we comply.
Fear and Hate – Both Negative and Entropic
Hate is akin to fear. Hate is that extreme directed backlash in reaction to an influence someone perceives to be a direct threat to them in some way. The extreme manifestations are ever present, from the Zionist genocide in Gaza and on-going Ukrainian massacre, to the hate propaganda being continually ginned by the corporate, agenda-driven media. On a personal level it’s a reptilian brain reaction/protection mechanism and one of the most corrosive and destructive emotions. And they prey on this element.
Both fear and hate are entropic – they break down the beautiful complexity of the natural flow and structure of life in order to release the energy within, leaving a used up, over-simplified and dead husk in its wake. This released energy is food for the temporal and spiritual parasites and the reason their ugly forces are exerted on humanity, and the living earth. You can feel it during violent events, strong expressions of fear and hate, and even at sports venues. The energy released and dissipated is being absorbed by the parasitic forces.
Fossil fuels, atomic energy and weapons of war are all entropic. So is the electromagnetic warfare and geoengineering madness being waged on our planet. All to release energy and create a homogenous, disempowered and easily controlled environment for the parasitic few, both here and in other dimensions. Fear and hate are two of their main tools to cause this same entropic effect on our spirits and society, and are mainstays to creating the negative herd mentality of the worst and most debilitating sort.
Keep the Peace – Not the Fear
We’re each learning to avoid, overcome and transcend induced fear, and it’s all well within anyone’s grasp.
Peace is precious and our inherent right. No matter what the conditions. While the media floods the airwaves with fear in all forms and our very culture is saturated with it along with the accompanying violence and death, our spiritual home is a place of peace. And love.
We need to see through the media storm and all the accompanying garbage they’re emanating, and avoid getting contaminated by it. It’s spiritual fly paper and one thing can easily lead to another if we get on the wrong track or vibration, taking in useless, toxic information or seemingly innocuous so-called entertainment. They’ve loaded it all up with hitchhiking energies so we need to be extra vigilant.
Stay free and keep the peace that comes from consciously aware knowing. A secure confidence in the rightness of all things essential. That’s where our hearts need to be centered.
Especially in these troublesome times.
For ourselves, our loved ones, and all of humanity.
Much love, and peace to you,
by Dr. Ahmed Yousef – Gaza
The blatant aggression against the Gaza Strip we are witnessing affects anyone who has a heart, as Israel’s destruction and barbarism are unprecedented and worse than any I have seen in my life. The horror of today’s attacks is incomparable with any of the raids and wars against the Gaza Strip over the past 50 years. The bombing raids being carried out by Israeli warplanes on the Gaza Strip, as well as the missiles being launched on the homes and farms of innocent civilians, are the latest by the “death industry” of the rogue state. With the war crimes it has committed, as well as its international law and human rights law violations, Israel has gone beyond any international condemnations, reactions and denouncements issued against its non-stop aggression. The latest of such condemnations by the UN were stated in the Goldstone Report after Operation Cast Lead in 2008/2009.
If this is the sad aspect of the human suffering of the Palestinians, then the bright side of the people’s steadfastness and resistance in this battle with the occupier has been highlighted in a level of deterrence and retaliation we haven’t seen before. The resistance has shown its engineering and planning strength and its capabilities, in stark comparison to the surrounding countries.
The Palestinian resistance, Islamic and national factions alike, have demonstrated that they are the glory, dignity and pride for all of us. Those who underestimated and sometimes mocked the resistance must apologies for the blood of our honorable martyrs and the wounded, as well as our brave prisoners and all of those who made the effort to prepare for this historical battle with the occupation.
I once heard Ahmed Jabari, the military commander of the Qassam Brigades, may God rest his soul, explain in one of the movement’s meetings before Israel’s 2012 war against us exactly how prepared the fighters were and the resistance potential in terms of armament and military capabilities. “We have now accomplished 80 per cent of what we wanted and, God willing, we will have the rest of our military equipment in the next stage,” he insisted.
His words now have important connotations and significance. Jabari and his colleagues excelled in their preparations for the battle. Today, in the field, we are witnessing the embodiment of what was promised: “We are patient in war, and true in meeting the enemy.”
During its preparation period that followed 2012?s “Operation Pillars of Cloud”, and the signing of the ceasefire agreement, and now in the armed conflict currently being fought, the resistance has demonstrated its intelligence gathering skills and fight-or-flight responses. We have reached the stage whereby, “if you are hurting, they are hurting just as you are”. The time when Israel could attack us without any cost to itself is long gone; the blood is coming from the same wound.
Today we bear witness that the Palestinian resistance groups have raised the status of this nation and restored some of the people’s wounded prestige. Everyone at all levels and in all groups is cheering for the resistance and hopes that the fighters will not lay down their arms before they have achieved victory and changed the equation of the truce and the blockade. We are not asking for impossible conditions, just the minimum that preserve our right to live in freedom and dignity. Our people are sick of being in a state of humiliation, poverty and begging for a living. In the past, they said, “Life under humiliation is hell”; we now say, “We are far from humiliation.” Netanyahu must understand that the Qassam and Al-Quds Brigades, as well as the Mujahedeen, Al-Aqsa and Abu Ali Mustafa Brigades are now laying down the law, and that the blood of the Palestinians is not a card that can be played by the extremist Zionists in their struggle for power and rule in Israel. They must also know that they will not enjoy security, safety, comfort and stability while our people are suffering from the occupation and the siege.
If today the Palestinian resistance rockets are reaching and intimidating all Israeli cities and towns, and the warning sirens are heard from Sederot to Nahariya; Yad Mordechai in the south to Ashdod, Tel Aviv, Herzliya and Haifa in the north; then in the near future, the resistance will have deterrence weapons that will challenge all Israeli accounts and concerns.
War on Gaza: Facts and Memories
Throughout all the wars I’ve witnessed since my childhood, and I am over sixty years old, I have never seen such pride, courage, confidence and bravery as what we are witnessing today, especially since we are living under non-stop Israeli raids, with shelling from artillery and warships around the clock. Even more dangerous than this, not a night goes by without a bloody massacre claiming the lives of women and children, in addition to the barbaric occupation policy of demolishing homes over the heads of their inhabitants.
In 1956, I was only a six year-old child but I remember the fear and panic in the streets of Rafah following the attack by the Israeli army in the Gaza Strip during the tripartite aggression against Egypt. Known by the world as the “Suez Crisis”, in which both Britain and France joined with Israel in the attack, it drove me to leave my house aimlessly, panting behind the masses of people who left the refugee camp to run towards the Mawasi area next to the beach for safety. I witnessed thousands of people trying to get away from buildings which were all prone to being bombed by the Israeli army from the air and land.
I spent three very difficult days away from my family during the Israeli invasion of Rafah city and its overcrowded refugee camp. People were crying and very sad. Family members had been separated due to the hurried evacuation of the camp, and the people suffered for several days without any food or drink, under the open sky, facing threats and death. Everyone returned to the camp when the situation calmed down somewhat, looking for their children and relatives. I was the eldest child in my family so they were doubly worried; I saw the pain etched on their faces.
On 12 November 1956, the Israelis massacred 124 men and boys in the Rafah refugee camp. Known as Al-Amiriyah School Massacre, the victims were herded into the school under the batons of the soldiers. Those who survived the beatings were met with a hail of bullets and the demolition of the building over their heads. The bloodstains stayed on the school walls for years to remind us children of Israel’s crime. It wasn’t until the following March that the Israelis left the camp and we could breathe a sigh of relief.
The greatest catastrophe occurred in 1967, when seven Arab armies were defeated during a military confrontation with Israel which lasted for six days. We found ourselves once again in panic, fear and grief.
With the “Naksa” setback, all of our dreams of victory and triumph vanished. After anticipating what we hoped would be a historical moment following the longs years since the 1948 Nakba, we awoke to the nightmare of occupation once more. We feared and prepared for the worst, witnessing numerous massacres and bloodbaths in which the Israeli occupation army violated all sanctities and international laws and norms, committed war crimes, and terrorized innocent civilians. In one massacre, the victims were a group of Egyptian reserve soldiers in one of the UNRWA schools near the Rafah railway station; another was committed by the Israeli occupation army against the family of Fatah leader Abu Ali Shaheen (may God rest his soul) in the Shabura refugee camp, where most of his family members were killed in cold blood.
I witnessed the fear and panic that accompanied such massacres; it was evident in the faces of everyone; children, the elderly, women and even men were all scared.
On our way to Egypt to complete our university studies, we witnesses the October 1973 War; the scenario was slightly different. We were, of course, worried at first, and we feared for our families in Gaza, but the tone of talk about the clashes between the Egyptian army and Israel was very different this time. The chants of “Allah is Great” and songs in praise of the Egyptian army gave us confidence that victory was definitely coming, and that it was time for the Arabs to score our first victory against the Israeli army; the Israeli commanders, meanwhile, boasted that their army was unbeatable. Egypt won.
We felt that our hope for the empowerment of our nation and achieving victory was not far-fetched after all; that all that the Arab and Muslim masses were missing was political unity and military cooperation. They also needed a mass movement following the calling of “Allah Is Great”.
With the return of Islamic awareness to the Gaza Strip after thousands of graduates returned from Egyptian universities in the late 1970s, preaching in mosques and institutions led by the Islamic Society and the Islamic University saw the beginning of resistance action against the occupation. The First Intifada broke out in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip in 1987, during which everyone, including the nationalists and Islamists, played an integral leading role which give us confidence in the possibility of rubbing Israel’s nose in the dirt and damaging the army’s prestige. Despite the clear imbalance in the balance of power in terms of preparation and military capabilities, the Palestinian will was there to do something about self-empowerment.
We saw glimpses of pride, dignity and defiance in the faces of the children who threw their stones and we sensed victory. The protests were bold in the face of threats from the Israeli generals. This was the new form of bravery and resistance, during which the children of Palestine lost their fear of the occupation soldiers. In 1988, I was sure beyond the shadow of a doubt that we were facing the generation that will be victorious, and that the occupation was on its way out and we could dream about freedom again.
In 1994, the Palestine Liberation Organization returned to the homeland and formed what it called the National Authority. The armed conflict of the Aqsa Intifada against the occupation in September 2000 was led competently and effectively by President Yasser Arafat. During this time, the Islamic and national resistance forces played the biggest part in teaching the Israeli enemy a lesson in how to deal with the Palestinians and respect human dignity.
With the martyrdom operations and creative resistance acts, in 2005 Israel and its army had no choice but to withdraw from the Gaza Strip in humiliation. The freedom that the territory gained after this allowed the resistance to expand. It was stressed that the adoption of jihad and resistance is not just an option, but a strategy we intend to use in order to achieve liberation and return.
With Hamas’s victory in the January 2006 elections and its formation of the Palestinian government, the work of the resistance factions grew stronger. A major achievement was the kidnapping of an Israeli soldier and a subsequent exchange of prisoners. The resistance also fought two bloody wars in response to Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip in December 2008-January 2009, as well as November 2012. Despite serious civilian casualties, including women and children, the resistance was able to remain steadfast and maintained its heroic position, teaching the occupation a lesson in sacrifice and redemption.
Although the destruction was massive, affecting human beings, animals and trees in the Gaza Strip, the morale of the Palestinians who experienced both wars in Gaza was high; they felt like victors because the occupation did not achieve its objectives and left humiliated with the collective tail between its legs.
The Latest Attack on Gaza
In the battle that we have been witnessing since Tuesday 7 July, many are asking what has changed since November 2012. What prompted the Israelis to provoke a new war after it has been proven time and time again that the “winning point” will go to the Palestinian resistance? The Israeli military, with all of its capabilities, will not win on the battlefield because military confrontations are based on tactics and perseverance as well as surprise plans and capabilities, and not merely having superior military equipment.
In the 1960s, France lost the battle for Algeria after an occupation that lasted 132 years and despite its great military superiority in comparison to the modest capabilities of the FLN fighters. The US super-power was defeated by the Vietcong in the 1970s, and the world witnessed the miserable fall of the Soviet Union in the early nineties, after the Red Army’s supplies and morale ran low in Afghanistan in its battle against the mujahedeen in the 1980s. In October 1983, I visited Afghanistan for a media mission, and I heard from the leaders of the mujahedeen there, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, Abdul Rasul Sayyaf, and Sheikh Abdullah Azzam, that the Soviet invaders would be defeated, that their kingdom would be fragmented and that their prestige would disappear within a decade; that is exactly what happened and the Afghan mujahedeen achieved a great victory.
We learn from history that battles may be won by those with military superiority, but the struggle of the people to gain freedom and independence is what usually achieves victory in the long run. The day has come when the Palestinians have the courage, capabilities, willpower and patience to challenge and fight the enemy; they are able to do what all the Arab armies have failed to do to the Israeli army; and resistance rockets have reached all of Israel’s cities and towns, from the north to the south and to everyone’s great surprise. This drives us to praise the brave resistance and its men.
A great way to a new standard.
Gold in small units, also one gram at time
David Gardner, Guest
We live in a fast-paced, hyper-connected society. While modern technology definitely has its benefits, does being constantly plugged in to technology, and relying on it for almost everything, erode the space for spirituality in our lives? How do we keep spirituality alive in our hyper-connected society?
When was the last time you went a whole day without technology? No smartphone, iPad, laptop, computer, electronic music device, GPS navigation system etc?
Can’t remember? That makes two of us.
In recent years, our lives have rapidly become more technologically-oriented and more connected than ever before in known history.
This obviously has its benefits:
- You might be reading this article on your smartphone after a friend shared the link on Facebook;
- Human rights issues are more widely publicised and supported than ever;
- The open-source information community is advancing human understanding in many areas and providing information on important topics not covered by the mainstream media; and
- You might have discovered life-changing spiritual information on the internet. Without the internet, spiritual seekers of old faced far greater challenges in their search for spiritual knowledge.
But are these technological tools that can enrich our lives also being misused? Could the changes these technologies bring in our lifestyles also contribute to the erosion of spiritual values in a way we might not fully realise for another generation?
Are we creating a culture of distraction?
Never in known history have we had such capacity for distraction at our fingertips. While losing hours to smartphone games or obsessively checking the latest status updates on Facebook probably seems harmless to most, our constant use of technology is threatening to create a culture with an epidemic lack of self-awareness.
We are in a world of content creators and consumers, and more information is currently created every two days than in the entire recorded history of the written language. It’s not surprising that if we’re not constantly connected we might feel like we’re missing out on something important. There is even a name for this type of anxiety; it’s called Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) and a recent study revealed that 56% of adults who use social media experience it. The irony is, by immersing ourselves in technology and distraction we are missing out on the most important thing of all – our life going on around us!
Absorption in technology and a lack of environmental awareness is becoming so chronic that traffic accidents due to driver distraction have doubled in recent times. Fights are being started as people on smartphones get in each others way.
An officer with the Seoul Metropolitan Police said, “We’ve seen a rise in reports of disputes on metro trains, and most of them started with a smartphone. People who are distracted by their smartphone are becoming a serious risk to society. (ref)
It’s even got so bad that people have been known to fall off piers, walk onto train tracks or fall into shopping mall fountains because of it. And shockingly in a recent event on a crowded train in America, passengers were so zoned-out that when someone pulled out a handgun and spent time waving it around, scratching his face with it and choosing a target, no-one realised there was a gunman on the train until a shot was fired and it was already too late.Constantly distracting ourselves from the present moment is obviously dangerous physically, but it also has devastating effects on our spiritual development.
If we are so caught up in our own little bubbles of virtual reality that we’re not even aware of what’s going on around us, how can we begin to be aware of our inner world of thoughts and emotions which are much more subtle? If we can’t be aware of what’s going on inside then we can’t begin to change and we will be at the mercy of boredom and painful inner states, which is the main reason why we’re so prone to distracting ourselves in the first place.
Without awareness of the present moment which has been understood in many spiritual cultures to be a cornerstone of self knowledge, can we even begin to develop spiritually, let alone notice the beauty and wonder of the world around us?
Hi, my name is Almost Everybody, and I’m a technology addict
I once knew a lady who checked her email so frequently at the major university where she worked that the IT department contacted her because she was slowing down the entire network.Video gamers become so absorbed in computer games that they can forget to eat or sleep.
In the most extreme cases, teens and young adults were spending up to 50 hours almost non-stop playing online computer games. Psychiatrists had confirmed anecdotal evidence that some wear nappies during long sessions so they won’t have to take a toilet break – Daily Telegraph
It’s fairly common now for people to check their email or phone more than 30 – 40 times an hour and when people feel disconnected they can get withdrawal symptoms similar to drug cravings such as mental and physical distress, anxiety, panic, confusion and feelings of extreme isolation.
To top it all off, the average number of texts sent by teenagers nowadays is 3000 – 4000 a month. That’s one text approximately every 6 minutes.
Who would have guessed technology could be so addictive?
What we haven’t been told is that technology uses discoveries from infamous behavioural psychology experiments to suck you in and keep you addicted. We are hard-wired to be alert to novelty, and when our phone dings or we receive a new email our dopamine system is triggered – the same part of our brain that would light up if we were to take heroin or cocaine.
If the pleasure and rewards we get from technology were consistent and predictable we might tire of them, but if we don’t know when or from where our next reward is coming, we will keep checking back again and again. This is called “variable ratio rewards” and it is why poker machines are the most used games at the casino, and why so many people will constantly check for new emails, messages or updates. Add to this the use of technology to feed sexual desires and you have an almost inescapable source of addiction.
Addiction of any kind is harmful spiritually and can cause all sorts of problems. Addictions can cause us to act compulsively, stealing our inner peace. They are a massive drain on our psychic energy and attach us to the physical world. Addiction feeds desire, and the more we feed desire, the more our attention is drawn to it and the stronger the vicious cycle grows.
Technology addiction makes us unhappy and more subconscious
With media consumption expected to average 15.5 hours per day by 2015, you’d think being so connected must be making us more fulfilled and happier. Unfortunately the reality is quite different.If you think of someone who is focussing on growing spiritually you might expect them to be developing qualities like:
- genuine happiness for the success of others; and
Unfortunately, being addicted to technology in a hyper-connected world instils a very different way of living.
The online world is a pretty narcissistic place, where many people compete for the most “friends” or “followers”, the best selfies, or the most “likes” on holiday pictures. In real life only about 30% – 40% of our conversations revolve around us, compared to almost 80% online. This is creating two types of phenomenon.
Firstly, we are becoming less genuine. Rather than seeing ourselves as we are and making efforts to improve, we are starting to fake our lives to create a more likeable online presence. Secondly, this leads to disappointment. If you’re living a normal life and comparing yourself to the high-flying false online personas projected by others, you’re almost certain to be disappointed in yourself.
Researchers have discovered that online usage can lead to the development of envy, depression and loneliness (which is ironic given that we are connected to more people than ever). If that wasn’t enough, it’s also been discovered that there is a limit to the amount of information we can consume, with some neuroscientists thinking we are consuming more information than we can handle. If we overload our brain beyond its limit we can trigger a fight or flight reaction causing the higher parts of our brain related to positive aspects like empathy to temporarily shut down. So too much information can actually make us more prone to acting through our subconscious impulses.
This is your brain on the Internet
Have you ever noticed that the internet functions in much the same way as a scattered mind?If you practice meditation you’ve probably noticed that your thoughts have a tendency to jump from one thing to the next until you end up somewhere quite different from where you started. Webpages follow this same structure by linking from one resource to the next until all of a sudden you realise you’ve been on the computer for far longer than intended and you’re looking at all those funny cat pictures again.
The internet encourages a scattered mind, but we can easily multiply the effect by the way we use it.
Do you have multiple tabs open right now? Are you flicking between them, skimming bits and pieces of information from everywhere without staying focused on one thing? Do you ever use your iPad while watching the news at the same time as cooking dinner?
By splitting our attention we are actively training ourselves to be distracted and it will show in your ability to focus the next time you try to be aware or sit down to meditate.
Is it time for a digital detox?
We don’t fully understand yet what the spiritual repercussions will be for a new generation becoming more absorbed in technology than ever, but the signs are not good.With so many easily available distractions and the capacity for instant gratification at our fingertips, will people even bother investing the time and effort required to activate their consciousness and experience spirituality deeply?
Over-reliance on smartphones and the internet may also lead to the inadequate development of our right brains and a resulting decline in memory and concentration. This is bad news for anyone who may be interested in spirituality as both memory and concentration are vital tools for inner development.
Access to such an abundance of information threatens to make us shallow and impatient as we skim read everything and navigate away from any page that isn’t loading fast enough.
The smartphone, more than any other gadget, steals from us the opportunity to maintain our attention, to engage in contemplation and reflection, or even to be alone with our thoughts. - Nicholas Carr from his book “The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains”
Thankfully it’s not too late for those of us who would rather use technology consciously to help our inner development, rather than be controlled and consumed by it.
The next time you have nothing to do, rather than reaching for your phone or the nearest wi-fi enabled device, try taking the time to practice observing yourself and your surroundings instead.
When you do use technology, use it wisely and purposefully, focusing on one thing at a time, having the self-discipline to focus on what you need to do so you don’t get sidetracked with distractions or spend a longer time on your device than you planned. Seek and digest information that is beneficial, educational and enriches your life, rather than content that is addictive or feeds your subconscious. If you’re looking for spiritual information, try to find the most practical information available, and when you’re done, make sure you put down your device and go practice and experience it – don’t just read about it!
If enough of us value spirituality more highly than distraction, then spirituality has a chance to survive in our hyper-connected society. So before you go do something else on the Internet, share this with someone who needs it and please let me know what they think.
About the Author
David has a deep interest in spiritual development, but has discovered there are many forces in the world working to keep people asleep. His recent interest has been researching the psychological tactics and techniques used to limit people’s spiritual potential, writing about his discoveries at The Conscious Reporter.