|Do you remember the future scenarios that we imagined back in
the 60's? These sketches usually showed how new gadgets and robot
maids would make our lives so much easier in the 21st century.
Well, for the most part, the gadgets have arrived. Dishwashers,
microwave ovens, the remote control and cell phones have greatly
expanded our "leisure time". Ironically, many of us are working
more hours than ever before. The hardworking 19th century farmer
worked from dawn to dusk. Yet, with electricity, a modem, and
an internet connection it's possible to work 24 hours a day. Technology
has taken the bottlenecks out of so many industrial processes
that running a business three shifts a day is no longer a difficult
feat, but rather is expected. Business systems that run "24x7"
are demanded by a global economy that buzzes along oblivious to
natural cycles, geographic boundaries and holidays.
Our goals and values in the past 30 years seem to have changed
dramatically. A cover story in Newsweek magazine recently described
how two-income families have become the norm. With both parents
on a career track the children have had to make due with "quality
time". The article raises the question of whether the myth of
quality time has deprived a whole generation of time spent together
as a family. In fact, we no longer desire more leisure time, but
rather, we crave more work time. Ads for laptops show people working
on the beach--a cellular modem ties them directly to the office.
Coupled with or perhaps created by our desire to be more productive
is the feeling that time is moving more quickly. The pace of technological
change has software executives talking of "internet years". From
their perspective a "year" passes every 52 days. One software
firm even holds its "annual meeting" every three months.
As with any trend that ripples through the mass consciousness,
you can participate or you can choose a different experience.
Alternate perspectives of time are held by the indigenous people
of the world. The Mayan people experience time in great cycles
("round time") in contrast to our linear time perspective. The
traditions of these cultures vary widely, but common to all is
the recognition that the experience of time is our own creation.
We can anxiously watch it slip away or we can center ourselves,
quiet our mind and experience a timeless stillness. Remember,
we exist outside of the tick-tock, time-driven reality that has
become transparent to us. We are creating that reality, not being
driven by it.
Do you expend so much energy running in "the rat race" that by
the evening all you can do is watch the TV? Feel the rhythm of
your life. Are you creating your pace or are you being paced by
society's expectation of what you should be doing? If this were
the only life you could live, what would you be doing? Are you
creating exactly what you'd like to be experiencing? When was
the last time you watched a sunset? Enjoyed the beauty of clouds?
Looked for shooting stars? Have you chosen to fill your life with
experiences that have meaning to you? Does your daily routine
represent the highest expression of the greatest idea you have
of you? See the book, ReSurfacing®: Techniques for Exploring Consciousness, for exercises that help you take inventory of your life.
Tony Cecala, Ph.D.
Publisher, The Holistic Networker
©1997, Tony Cecala