Gordon Stewart: When the news goes away
Days away from internet access brings a calmer reflection. Being in touch isn't all it's cracked up to be. Out of touch with bad news brings relief to the body.
If living in the developed world means being on edge all the time, I'd prefer a less developed one - maybe a teepee with smoke signals for communication. Anxiety is real enough without the constant sting of bad news from far away and beyond my small sphere of influence.
Madison Avenue loves my anxiety. It preys on what can only be prayed about. An ad agency is no praying mantis! It loves green but its antennae hunt for the anxious selves who confuse wants with needs, buying the things we do not need if we believe we only exist by having them.
Stillness and being are not their thing. Selling is their game. They don't pray. They prey on well-trained animals, ringing Pavlov's bell for manufactured tastes and smells, while down on Wall Street Monday's opening bell opens the door of hornets' nest.
Like the praying mantis, the non-preying prayers live far from the bells. In touch with what's worth much more than it's cracked up to be: a less bad news world where humans live teepee-lives in touch with the body . . . in the stillness of time.
"Their aim is to confound the plans of the afflicted, but the LORD is their refuge." [Psalm 14:6, The Book of Common Prayer]
- Gordon C. Stewart, wilderness cabin, northern Minnesota, September 3, 2017