In an era when the average person is wired to the hilt, on-line and in-touch 24/7, some of the finer points of living get lost in the shuffle, according to Yoav Schlesinger, CEO of Reboot, a Jewish educational organization in the U.S.
“The never-ending stream of information that we’re exposed to on a daily basis and the ever-present glow of a screen can be overwhelming,” Schlesinger told The Times of Israel. “Technology overuse takes an immeasurable toll on our ability to give time to the things that are most important in our lives – friends, family, good food, our communities and ourselves.”
What the world needs now, says Schlesinger, is a “tech detox” program – specifically, a “National Day of Unplugging” (NDU), in which people commit to “turn off” their electronic personas for 24 hours. This year’s third annual NDU is set for this Shabbat, beginning on sunset Friday and running through sunset Saturday.
Although Reboot is a Jewish educational organization, the NDU is open to all, said Schlesinger. “Over the past two years, NDU has reached tens of millions of people internationally and resonated with people of all backgrounds, from Catholic to Hindi, Buddhist and Muslim.” And while all three NDUs have taken place on the Jewish Sabbath, it’s the concept that is important, not necessarily the timing. “Because we come from a Jewish place, we recommend unplugging for Shabbat, but those from other traditions are certainly free to unplug any time they feel appropriate.”
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