Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Learning Diet

I wonder if many of us make the times these days to really take a helicopter view regarding our purpose in life. I know I often promise to do this very thing myself and I often put it off... too busy? Perhaps that’s just an excuse.

One observation I can make even in the flurry of activity that is my life is we have to mind carefully what our minds are grazing on. Much like we would do with our eyes and stomachs at a wine and cheese night or at a buffet-style restaurant, our minds graze; but unlike grazing on food--which occurs on occasion (through the day)--our minds are grazing all the time.

We absorb so much, and not all of it’s optimal for our ‘diet.’ What are we grazing on in the process of our living experience?

The Electronic Invasion

Most of us have a healthy helping of television or perhaps we’re facebook junkies or can’t get enough of the Wii? These are not exactly helpful things in large daily doses. There’s a balance in moderation required on these. A little of each is okay, but it’s not a very fulfilling diet if we live on them. They can however, be a good vehicle toward a little healthy escapism though. Discipline: 1-2 hours per day?

Friends and Acquaintances

Who of us has decent friends? Now, I love facebook. But facebook can falsely allow us to think we have a lot of friends, but it isn’t really that good--there’s very little about it to create any real sense of intimacy with people. It’s fine if it’s used as a connection tool for real face-to-face encounters. It can’t compete with real quality time with friends and family.

Books and Multimedia

There’s so much we can learn from regarding books and multimedia these days, but it’s the matter of being discerning. We can either choose the wrong things to nibble on or we can gorge too much defeating the purpose of learning, as nothing sticks.

Travel etc

Some people travel extensively to learn; some take a particular career path; some others still take quite eccentric paths in life. If the motive is to learn, neither of these is bad, provided what we’re learning is positive, right, just and fair.

The watch point is simply to view our experience of living as a ‘diet of learning’; this requires discipline to create for ourselves the right learning environment involving sufficient sources for insight, challenge and fun.

Copyright © 2009, S. J. Wickham. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

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