So far outside the box you can't even see the box from here.
Monday, April 6, 2015
Into the wilderness
Modern communications are amazing. When I first came to my in-laws place on Table Rock Lake it was a 12 mile drive on twisty bad roads into town. Only there could I get a connection to the Internet. There was a drive through liquor store that sold dial-up connections by the minute. Now I get a strong 4G signal on a mobile hotspot. It's not cheap, but sure beats driving into town.
Besides cell phone connections, there are many devices designed to work with satellites. Everything from full phone service to a simple rescue button are available. Injured hikers and distressed boaters lives have been saved by the new technology. One cannot deny there are benefits.
Progress does not come without down sides. It's difficult to sink into the rhythms of the natural world while constantly checking social media. There has been a spiritual cost. There's a long tradition of people wandering off into the wilderness to quiet the mind and partake in a journey of self discovery. Most of history's great spiritual leaders have made such pilgrimages.
You don't have to be a Bodhidharma to benefit from wandering the wilderness alone. It certainly did me a lot of good, especially during times of great life transitions.
So is that experience lost forever? Is there a middle path? Perhaps it would not hurt to have a fully charged but turned off cell phone in the bottom of one's pack -just for emergencies. It would take some disciple to only use it in emergencies, but consider that part of the quest.
I live in an area of NH known as the Great North Woods. I'm in my dome-i-cile out in the county with my lovely wife and a varying number of family and friends
-part red neck, part hippie but all country. Experimenting and enjoying the adventure of life.