THE INTERNET AND THE INNER LIFE

“Life is the center where the material and spiritual forces of the universe seem to meet and to be reconciled.  Spirit is born in life.”  –Edmond W. Sinnott, Science and Spirituality, page 182

 

The internet offers a whole new range of possibilities for reaching out to the world and connecting more directly and quickly than ever was possible in the past.  It is a product of technology, and it can be a help or a hindrance to the cultivation of the inner life.  With the advent of science and technology, there has been a tendency to feel that we now live in a world of machines, robots, and other things mechanical.  Is there room in this kind of world for a deepened spiritual life?  The first conclusion has been that the inner world is no longer as important as it once was, but then we need to look at this question more carefully.

The choices we make are based on our values, and if life is sacred, then we need to provide time for reflection and meaningful decision-making.  There needs to be a balance between facts and values.  Facts give us data about what is going on, but it takes human values to make decisions as to what is important.

The world we now live in seems to be getting increasingly taken up with computers, iphones, ipads, and other things mechanical.  Does this mean that we must give up our thoughts about what matters in life and be told by our technology how we are to live?  Are our religions becoming less important, since they are the source of many of our most important values?  Our services of worship, by whatever name they are called, need to be an important part of our lives; we need the inspiration they provide to guide us in our value choices.

As much as I value the work of Farmers Markets in terms of the foods they provide, I am very concerned that holding them on Sunday mornings takes us away from the time which for most people needs to be devoted to the quest for the awakened spiritual life.  I realize that some faiths do not worship on Sunday mornings, but the vast majority do.  If for some people, other times for worship are provided, then the problem is solved.  But my impression is that many people in our society do not take time to seek the awakened life for one reason or another, and I have to say that no life is complete unless it includes an ongoing time to go within and reflect on the meaningfulness of our personal lives.

In the educational world, more time needs to be devoted to human values for this same reason.  Learning about facts is important, but unless we are equally aware of the values we live by and the sacredness of life itself, we will be as a boat adrift at sea with no rudder to steer our life in a meaningful direction.

Spirit is One; paths are many!!!

-by Rev. Leland Stewart