I've taken a few knocks recently. Nothing major. Always little things, stuff not quite working out, stupid blunders of my own making induced by either laziness or plain not listening. I suppose it happens to everyone, but when it does it's often difficult to see it that way, let alone feel it.
If you know me or have read the blog for any time you know I have a fascination with how technologies are changing the way we think, how they affect our attention spans and how we relate to one another. And I can only reconcile why I find I have a growing interest in this field, by acknowledging these forces are having a growing power over my own abilities to do these very things, and I think is somewhat responsible, in part at least, for some of the blundering!
The constant connectedness of the modern workplace, family and social community at times can be a place in which I thrive, the speed things can be turned around is compelling, the ability to pull together assorted groups of people to get things done that drive innovation, collaboration and ultimately progress is so alluring. But at the same time this is often tempered by a sense that the speed in which we are moving, and the consistency of that speed is somehow degrading some of our more basic human faculties. Those that allow us to hear Gods voice and discern his plan for instance.
I think it can be difficult when you are very aware that you are a product of the generation, because it's so hard to discern if this is the same inner conflict that people of any generation past have also experiences, or is this an issue very much unique to millennialists who are currently living this out?
In talking with YouthWorker friends and youth pastors, it appears that at least for now the next generation seem to be very at ease with the idea of being constantly connected. This of course is bringing with it a level of concern amongst those working with this age group about their future ability to communicate face to face effectively, and their ability to reflect and learn from their personal histories, when they are living so consistently in the present of the latest Facebook comment stream or BBM conversation.
Those of us who can remember what life was like before broadband and ubiquitous mobile phone usage find themselves in a odd, but vitally important position. We live in part very knowledgable about how these technologies work and their intended uses, whilst still holding an understanding about what life was like before they existed or at least we're mainstream.
Could it be that we will be the last generation to ask questions about whether this new world we find ourselves in is healthy, right and true? It's a philosophical question worth addressing: is pushing the boundaries of technology, just because we can, always a sign of progress?
If there is even the faintest possibility that we could be the last to ask such questions, how much greater does that make our responsibility to investigate this area and pass that knowledge on, before it's too late?