Key To Success

What do you do when you come across a key to success in a book you're reading? You ponder over it. Since I read many books and come across many keys, I thought it would be fun to share the ideas that arise as I contemplate a key to success. Reading is not just about absorbing information, it's also about contemplating, allowing the ideas to blossom within, and nurturing a seed tossed in the rich soil of the inner garden.

Location: Denver, Colorado, United States

I got my Master's degree in psychotherapy more than a decade ago. Since then I've studied the human condition with fascination. Over the years, I've learned a singular lesson: your life does not work when you oppose your soul nature. If you want a magical life, you have to drop your inauthentic transactions with the world. You discover your own power when you spend time alone to figure out what you really love to do.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Is The Pace Of Technology Making Us Stupid?

A huge attention span is the hallmark of genius.

The biographies of men like Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla reveal that they were so fascinated by their experiments that they worked almost all day and all night in a state of fascinated excitement.

Conversely, a short attention span is a sign of stupidity.

Our world will never again see the essays of men like Henry David Thoreau, rich in metaphor, similes, and cascading rivers of prose.

It is moving too fast, and its events are being communicated to our bedazzled brain in sound bites and media blitz.

The internet itself, when it comes to the subject of literacy, is a huge paradox.

On one hand, the pace of technology causes the user to quickly grow weary of slow dial-ups and slow loading web pages, our nervous systems responding to 5 to 10 second pauses with the impatience of drivers stuck behind a red light.

On the other hand, the plethora of information, running to billions of web pages, with each search word literally offering a million or more possibilities on a search engine, is staggering.

The word “Henry David Thoreau,” on Yahoo Search Engine for example yields 1,900,000 results.

Unfortunately, those of us who habitually dabble in this new frontier are becoming increasingly less likely to develop solid study skills, which involves developing a large enough attention span to process, comprehend, and implement ideas.

Our hard drives are filled with e-books not read, software files not opened, and digital projects not completed.

Unfortunately, these habits of subject illiteracy are not confined only to this new media of global communication, but spills over to all other aspects of our lives—from channel surfing to grocery shopping, from responding to the question of a friend to designing a new business plan.

Quick is in, and slow is out. Brief is hot, and long is the kiss of death.

The person with the fastest pitch wins the sale.

The faster you move, the more you can get done.

While all this may have its merits, the human brain, the three pounds of spongy mass, which has more circuits than the most sophisticated telephone exchange in the world, is becoming increasingly less efficient.

Our eyes need time to scan and our ears to hear and our brain to sort out the true from the untrue, fact from fiction, and to draw elaborate models of how things are put together and work in harmony.

Sometimes when reading a novel from another century, like Victor Hugo or Honorè de Balzak, for example, where the characters move slowly and ponderously through the plots, feeling deeply the movements of their destiny, in touch with the depths of moral and philosophical complexities, it seems we are evolving to become a different species—a dazzled and bewildered one, where superficiality is the norm, rather than the exception, and where we are almost completely losing touch with what it means to be human.

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Saleem Rana is a psychotherapist in Denver, Colorado. If you're up to the challenge and want to create the kind of freedom and lifestyle you truly deserve - starting now - then get his free book from


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