I think smartphones are useful gadgets, but a little restraint is in order. A sample:
I grant that toilets aren’t the sexiest spots in the world – and certainly not the most conducive to cultivated reflection. But along with the shower, they’re one of the last remaining sites for idle minutes.
Unless we’re preoccupied with uncomfortable straining, they force us to sit still, in silence, without doing any work, attending to chores, or otherwise being useful or amused. Some of my best ideas arrive when I’m on the can. (Which might say something about the quality of my ideas. But let’s leave this aside for now.) They arise, not from deliberate, calculated thinking, but from those moments of quiet meditation – the gifts of effluence, we might say.
We needn’t ban smartphones, or bin them – as I’ve argued, they’re useful devices. But this encroachment into the flushing meditation chamber is a sign that restraint is in order. More importantly, it’s a call for liberty: the reclamation of one’s own directions, cadences and inner world.(Photo: ABC)