Essential Distance

One thing I intend to never do again for the rest of my life:

Camp out on the internet and gawk. Lapping-up hot takes about what is unfolding in the world, and allow it to poison my entire sense of the world and existence.

So silly…

There is more beauty in the world than ugliness. It’s simply a matter of how we spend our time and what we’re paying attention to.

For all its benefit, the internet insists on shoving our skulls into fresh piles of shit. It plumps our minds with incidental garbage like foie gras. Perusing the internet is like walking into the grocery store for broccoli and leaving with a shopping cart full of chips and candy. And industry wants it to work this way. “Self-control” to defend ourselves is laughable, as we are manipulated with imperceptible algorithms and enticing hits of dopamine. A puppet, even a self-aware one, is forever vulnerable to tugs on its hidden strings.

I just spent 10 days disconnected from the world. Three of which were in the small cabin above. My only activities: meditation, journaling, listening to a single audiobook, and drawing. All I heard were birds, the wind moving through the trees, the treehouse creaking as it swayed, and a large pack of coyotes at night – excited by some kill.

At the eye of this experience I found complete bliss and peace. Something I’ve been lucky to taste many times before – yet finding it here made all the frenzy of society seem especially repulsive and unhelpful.

I will still maintain some relationship with the internet, but will be taking great pains to stay above the tree-line – limiting my time to very specific resources and sipping with extreme caution – never fooling myself that I am invulnerable to abundant poison.

Further, I certainly don’t want to fan the flames. Which makes me ask – why am I here? On the internet, pouring yet more content into a place that seems to, on balance, be so corrosive?

Well, I will be writing much more slowly and deliberately, challenging myself to be a signpost, reminding people to get the hell off of here as often as possible.

The peace I just found, and still lingers, (frankly, is always available to us, lest we ignore it) is undeniable. And yes, this is true, even despite all of the “problems” in the world and any “apparent” reason to be flummoxed by humanity.

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