Friday, 29 December 2017

Orange or Juice ... Slow Down

I never had time for oranges .. all that fiddling around and mess skinning and eating them just didn't seem worth it -  just pour juice and drink - job done!

This Christmas I "got it" ... by slowing down and taking the time to skin an orange and eat it I came to appreciate how better to enjoy the fruit but also how better to enjoy life as well.

"Live fast, die young." ~ Ed Westwick

Life in the material world is "fast and furious" ...  "faster is the new fast" for competitive advantage and there is a "need for speed" to "move fast and break things" and get ahead in the race.  We live in a cult of speed ... do more, have more, get more, consume more but we only have so much time and the only way for more is to do it quicker to fit more in ... more, more, more .... quicker, quicker, quicker.

I remember hearing an interview on the radio with hearing Frank Bruno where he told a joke that like much good humour works on many levels.

"I'm getting better at sex ... I managed to finish in under a minute" 
~ Frank Bruno

"Speed is fun, sexy, an adrenaline rush. It’s like a drug and we are addicted. At the same time, the world has become a giant buffet of things to do, consume, experience – and we rush to have it all. The modern workplace also pushes us to work faster and longer while technology encourages us to do everything faster and faster.

It’s reached the point of absurdity. You can now do courses in Speed Yoga or attend a Drive Thru Funeral. A magazine in Britain even published an article recently on how to bring about an orgasm in 30 seconds!"  Carl Honoré

"Drive slow and enjoy the scenery - drive fast and join the scenery". 
~ Douglas Horton

Producers of consumer products encourage us to binge for pleasure, while it might make us sick and consume the planet, trumping quality with quantity turns over more stuff and gives the industry a healthy financial turnover and keeps the economy ticking over - there is no profit in the 3Rs (Re-use, Renew, Recycle). Fast-life binge consumerism turns the bucket list into a sick bucket it can turn you into a basket case and kick the bucket.

“It is a mistake to think that moving fast is the same as actually going somewhere.”  
Steve Goodier

Has it always been this way ... I don't think so. I remember how people talked about "the rat race" in the 1960s and The Good Life TV series in the 1970s but the race then had only just begun. In the 1970s we imagined the 21st century as an age of leisure supported by machines and technology. Instead technology has turned us into machines in a rat race on a treadmill going nowhere faster.

"Slow down and enjoy life. It's not only the scenery you miss by going too fast - you also miss the sense of where you are going and why." 
~ Eddie Cantor

Carl Honoré described slowing down as "a cultural revolution against the notion that faster is always better. The Slow philosophy is not about doing everything at a snail's pace. It's about seeking to do everything at the right speed. Savoring the hours and minutes rather than just counting them. Doing everything as well as possible, instead of as fast as possible. It’s about quality over quantity in everything from work to food to parenting." 

Beth Meredith and Eric Storm describe slowing down as "structuring your life around meaning and fulfillment. Similar to "voluntary simplicity" and "downshifting," it emphasizes a less-is-more approach, focusing on the quality of your life. ... Slow Living addresses the desire to lead a more balanced life and to pursue a more holistic sense of well-being in the fullest sense of the word' .

“There is more to life than simply increasing its speed.”
~ Mahatma Gandhi

In "Going Slow" Tom Faber explains that "Ancient Greeks had two words to talk about time. Chronos is clock time, measured in seconds, minutes and hours. It means much the same as the word ‘time’ does now. Kairos, on the other hand, is a trickier, more seductive concept. It is time measured qualitatively, a moment of indeterminate duration in which an event of significance happens. Kairos is often used to describe moments of perfection, where one briefly steps outside of the passage of time. The early proponents of the Slow Movement sought to reintroduce kairos to the world, suggesting that a hasty, meticulously-planned life forecloses the possibility of these moments of perfection.

In typically Greek fashion, both were personified. Chronos was a wizened old man carrying a scythe and an hourglass, a forerunner to the Grim Reaper. Kairos was a handsome young man with wings at his heels, the back of his head shaved so that no one could grab his hair and hold him back. Once the opportunity of a perfect moment has passed you by, it’s gone forever."

Bill Powers discovered "that being “Slow” is not at all Luddite. It means cultivating positive qualities - being receptive, intuitive, patient, reflective - instead of the fast qualities so common today: being busy, controlling, impatient, agitated, acquisitive."

“Slow down, you move too fast, You got to make the morning last” 
~ Simon & Garfunkel  (The 59th Street Bridge Song)

“Life's short enough as it is without rushing” 
~ Terry Wogan

So often "less is more" ... slow down and pay yourself in time and take time to do things properly and enjoy them more. Instead of just going faster all the time try fasting ... try leaving things out and going without. Don't just use technology to go faster but try a technology fast and step away from the computer and the screen and focus on the real world and people around you.

There are times when there is a need for speed and there are times when there is a need to go slow - life is in the balance.

No comments:

Post a Comment