Time Keeps on Slipping

In 1976, Steve Miller Band released a song called “Fly like an Eagle.”  In the lyrics a phrase is repeated, “time keeps on slipping, slipping, slipping into the future.”  Our present culture has immersed itself into a type of time compression because of technology. Modern societies around the globe multitask at levels impossible to even conceive in cultures previous to ours.

Smart phones, personal computers and communications have allowed humanity to accomplish in minutes what would have taken other generations weeks.  Productivity exists on a level that would astound our grandparents, and it seems society has no problem keeping up with the pace.  As our technology increases we are able to do amazing things in smaller increments of time.  However, as a whole, we’re not ascending to higher levels of intelligence. In fact, studies show that the average human being, though exposed daily to a knowledge base that is vastly more infinite than previous generations, is actually dwindling in the realm of common intelligence.  In some way we all have been conned into believing that artificial intelligence is human intelligence.

A brief example:  I was in a conversation with a young boy of about 14 last week.  As the conversation progressed, we got into a heated discussion about whether or not the computer next to us was smarter than us.  Trying to reason with this bright, straight-A student seemed impossible as he was set on the notion that, because the internet had more access to information, it must, therefore, be more intelligent than humans.

Does time seem to be slipping away?  Like most caught up in this fast paced world, we all feel the pressure of lost time.  It seems there isn’t enough time in a day or days in a week.

What is missing?  Why is it that we are at the technological pinnacle of existence, and yet there has never been a more depressed, sick, stressed, unhealthy, medicated society in all of human history?  What did the ancients have that we do not?

The greatest gift G-D gave to His people is the Sabbath.  This pause in time allows an individual to decompress and reflect on the Divine.  Families stop their frantic goal-driven lives, to light the Sabbath candles and enjoy dinner together.  Statistics show that productivity increases when a person is given enough time to rest.  Luckily, the Creator of the universe understood this concept from the beginning. This wonderful gift is available to all to experience.  But sadly, it’s rarely received.

In his recent book “The Gift of Rest,” Senator Lieberman states, “regardless of one’s religion, or frankly whether one considers oneself religious, there’s a powerful message and purpose to the Sabbath.  The gift of rest is desperately needed in our world today, where people work so hard almost every day, and yearn for meaning and find it hard to locate in our popular culture.”

Take time to consider the Sabbath and it benefits.  Slow down, step out of life in the fast lane for a moment, and smell the roses. In doing so, you will find rest, happiness and discover that time is not slipping away into the future.

©Reuven Atzil

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