Often around the edges of websites there is “click bait” with captions like, “Photos from Vegas you can never unsee.” They are usually accompanied by a suggestive shot. We are bombarded with visual stimulation. And it does get into our heads. I’ve heard that we never actually “forget” anything that we have seen or experienced. It’s all in there, even if we can’t call it to mind. That feels true.
Sometimes I feel like my mind is becoming more cluttered than my garage. Like looking for my tape measure on my cluttered workbench, I struggle to recall where an idea or a quote came from, which of the books I’m reading, or which YouTube, or blog or conversation.
I wonder what the long-term effect of all this information will be. It’s not making me any wiser. Mostly just more weary. Processing all that stuff takes mental energy. Feeling like I’ve never got it all sorted creates a low-grade, chronic anxiety. Then there is the haunting awareness of all the stuff I might need to know. What am I missing? It’s overwhelming.
When St. Paul offered this information filter did he foresee the internet, 24/7 “news”, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Instagram, Facebook? Just this alone would surely simplify life. And what would I really miss out on? Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Phil 4:8