My laptop stopped working on Friday.  What a blessing it has been to be offline!  Being offline with technology has enabled me to be more online with LIFE!

Here are some of the things I have done since Friday:

  • Caught up on my sleep.
  • Cleaned.
  • Did some dreamwork.
  • Meditated more.
  • Cooked some healthy meals.
  • Did some morning stretching/light yoga.
  • Made a couple calls to Mom and some long-lost friends.
  • Got up in the middle of the night to look at the moon and stars.

Give me a few more days and I may also:

  • Read a couple books.
  • Take a hike.
  • Write a couple of old-fashioned letters(!)
  • Play Scrabble with a real board and tiles and in-the-flesh friend.

Clearly this computer malfunction has been very good for me.  I have no doubt that it was divinely orchestrated to help me finally break my addiction to Facebook and other technological enticements that keep me from being more present to the “real” world around me.  This week has been like a retreat!

This has made me think of the times a major snowstorm, ice storm, or hurricane has caused us to lose power.  What kinds of things do you and your family do when that happens?

My guess is people do more of the following:

  • Play games.
  • Read.
  • Sleep.
  • Make love.

We probably all know by now that historically there has been a spike in births nine months after each widespread blackout.  I figure one of two things probably happened.  1) With no television to distract, people finally started paying attention to the spouse or partner who had been there all along.  (What a concept, relating to flesh and blood instead of an electronic device!)  2) With no electrical lights to keep people artificially awake and busy, people followed their natural instincts to go to sleep when it got dark.  And once they were in bed – early, for a change, they had the energy for the person who was sharing the bed with them!

This also makes me wonder what people did before the invention of electricity.  Or cars, for that matter.

People probably:

  • Sat around a fire.
  • Told stories.
  • Wrote letters.
  • Played musical instruments.

I loved the movie Out of Africa.  I loved what a premium was placed on the fine art of storytelling.  And in the delightful movie Off the Map, Joan Allen’s character read books to her family by lantern each evening.  And in other period films, a good pianist and singer were highly prized for their entertainment value.  Whereas in the old South, fiddlers, banjo players, and harmonica players were greatly appreciated.

Even thinking about these offline pastimes makes me feel a bit more peaceful.  Wouldn’t it be interesting to voluntarily choose to have one or more days a week in which to put aside electronic devices and rely instead on our natural rhythms and the in-the-flesh company of our families or friends?  I think I might institute that.  Would anyone like to join me?

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