a space in the sun



deck on 5/2019


I remember the first time I tried to read my iPhone 8+ in the sun. The screen fled the heat.  And now, my deck has become an unfriendly place for my devices. It is just as well since I now realize they do try to steal my attention. Today I read an article by Nicholas Cannarecto about a book by Jenny Ordell called: “How to Do Nothing; Resisting the Attention Economy.”

We stay on line too much. Digital platforms keep us connected for their own profit. But to engage in sensitive, actual human interaction, we need to escape from them. A Greek philosopher, Diogenes, lived simply, naturally, and without shame, rejecting the artificial trappings of society. He engaged with the world, but lived apart.

Facebook catches and kills our attention by eliminating context in a void composed solely of the present. The present lacks content, humanity and sustainable meaning.

We must be able to contemplate, participate; leave and come back, where we are needed: to take the view of the outsider without leaving. Our enemy is in the channels through which we encounter the world day by day.

By standing apart, we may be able to refocus attention on the world, mitigate its social divisions and inequality, hear it and see it in all its strangeness and richness.

Doing nothing means living in accord with nature, community, and careful observation of the world, when we pry open the cracks in the concrete and encounter life itself.


Apparition Apprehend Appropriate

My soul awakens me
At night.

I perceive
A spector-
Unusual sight.


I lay hold of it

An abrupt and fleeting encounter;
An impression that lasts forever.


Obvious, overt, manifest.


I make it my own
Certain, sure


Fully understand
Compassionate insight.

Phantasm embraced!

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