KEEPING THE FAITH: Multitasking madness

Published: Thursday, June 6, 2013 at 12:25 PM.

Of course, these big cat masters knew that a dining chair wouldn’t keep the lions from devouring them (nor would the whip). What they knew was that the chair would confuse the lion. The four points of the chair’s legs, bobbing about as they were, tangled the lion’s mind just enough so that the animal could not act on his carnivorous intentions.

Lion tamers realized that the big cats could be kept in a catatonic state (no pun intended) by splitting their attention. By focusing on the multiple moving pieces, the lion could never focus solely on the tamer. This multitasking fragmentation kept the lion from being what it really was born to be. It kept the animal, caged.

What an apropos parallel for those of us living in a world gone mad with multifarious activity — so appropriate it barely deserves comment. With our jobs, families, careers, hobbies, sports programs, deadlines, doctor appointments, ringing and dinging reminders, news reports, buzzing cellphones, and screaming calendars it’s a wonder any of us remain functional.

Our energy is so entirely defused and our attention so thoroughly diverted, that we are essentially incapacitated. With our heads turned down, gazing long and deep into our smart screens, we are at risk of being smashed out of our minds by all the static and interference.

We would do well to hear the words of Jesus for ourselves as he gently but categorically rebuked a dear friend by saying, “You are so worried and distracted by many things, when only a few things are needed.”

We aren’t super-sized computers built and equipped with central processing units. We are human beings, born to laugh and to love; born to take life slowly and deeply as it comes to us; and we are born to be uncaged, set free from the madness of multitasking.

Ronnie McBrayer is a syndicated columnist, speaker, and author of multiple books. You can read more and receive regular e-columns in your inbox at www.ronniemcbrayer.me.



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