Today I sat on the train and observed everyone around me immerse themselves in their smart phones. Not one person looked up. Not even to look at the beautiful red sun that was shining bright in the middle of winter.
Some may say I wasted my time sitting their not checking my emails or messages. I could have caught up on Facebook gossip or scrolled through Whatsapp group chats, checked Instagram, Pinterest, Skype, Snapchat, Linkedin, Etsy, Twitter, TED, Words with Friends….AAAAHHHH!!
NO. Today I spent the time reflecting, observing, thinking, and just being present in the moment. At first it was a little boring, but then I decided to consciously look for something positive on the train. Before the brief journey was over I had engaged in a smiling game with a baby, got a great idea for a salad from someone snacking next to me, and witnessed a young girl give her seat up for an elderly lady. It seems so simple, but it was happening right now, in the present moment; happiness, inspiration & kindness.
At what point did we feel the need to constantly distract ourselves from reality?
I was reminded of a documentary I had once seen which showed the discovery of an ancient device in Egypt which mapped out the entire solar system to perfection. Historians couldn’t understand how such an ancient society could have had so much knowledge of our solar system. Their only solution? The people of those times spent hours gazing at the sky, observing stars, subtle movements, obscure reactions and understood their universe better than we do now. Have we really regressed that much?
I do blame the invention of the smart phone to an extent, but WE are the ones controlling the phone. We could just put them away! Perhaps we can then remember what it’s like to be present and fully appreciate living in the moment and all the beauty it has to offer.