Tuesday, July 08, 2014

there is real life outside...

This morning I woke up with a wren perched on the window sill. It was a brief reminder that we are not in this world alone and that the strange digital world of our own fixation is not all there is. We share this plane and planet with creatures of all sizes and sensitivities and all life has been poised up to this point on a delicate balance.

I went from that moment to fixing my morning beverage, and turning on the computer so that I could check my email and thus enter a state of electronic stupor.

NPR lately has been wondering if people can actually spend more than a few moments away from their electronic devices. Some folks are attempting to take vacations from it all and finding their relationships with the flow of electrons through hand held devices to be both mesmerizing and addictive.

What if we were addicted to real life instead? What if what we read gave us the power to make, fix and create, instead of offering surcease from reality, and what if we were thus led to engage in the creation of useful beauty?

My walk through the Museum of Arts and Industries in Paris was a reminder that craftsmanship and curiosity are the sources from which science arose, and that all that we have now in our modern world was the direct result of observation and craftsmanship. Without craftsmanship and human beings having taken matter and materials in our own hands, much of the investigation of material reality would not have taken place. We have made a tragic mistake in American education.

It should not be about the forced acquisition of knowledge, but should be about the development of craftsmanship that inspires lifelong learning.

But what happens when people cease to care for the real world that surrounds us and invest most of their attentions to the hand-held digital devices? What will we lose, and what will we gain? And we can also ask what will the world and life outside gain if we cease to care about it?

The photo above shows sets of geometric solids from the Museum of Arts and Industries in Paris. Double click on the image to see it in greater detail.

I delivered lids to be laser engraved yesterday, and will proceed with my box making when the engraver's work is complete.

make, fix and create...

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