Hello everyone and a very Happy New Year to you all! It has been quite some time since my last blog entry. Indeed, it must have seemed as if this co-author of 21st Century Libraries blog had relinquished all connections to the endeavor. To be honest, it seemed as well to myself that this was the case. But as Fats Waller once said: “One never knows, do one?”
Well, I guess you could say that I have been away on a retreat of sorts. About 2½ years ago, I decided that I must take some sort of journey, though I understood this endeavor to be an inner journey, one that would not literally require me traveling about the world. And, unlike Henry David Thoreau, I did not literally go “live in the woods”. I did, however, often go into my quiet little room, sit in stillness under a tree in my yard, walk in parks and observe through my senses, and butter my bread and drink my water with mindfulness. I also chose to stop watching all TV and movies.
I deliberately chose the information sources that would assist me on the path that I wished to follow, a path of awakening, of becoming still, a path of consciousness and awareness. Thankfully, those types of information sources are at present abundantly available, most notably on the Internet. Yet, as the principles of Library and Information Sciences teach us, we must now more than ever in these times, be mindful of the sources of information that we encounter.
And so, as the title of this first post of the year 2016 suggests, it is my intention to share thoughts with my readers about information, and about how we interact with various forms of information when we are aware and conscious in the present moment, a state of being that the practice of mindfulness teaches us. Mindfulness in and of itself is not a goal, rather a means to an end. It is deliberate path offered freely to all who choose it, and one that opens the door to freedom, peace, stillness, and conscious awareness for every human being on the planet.
My blog entries for the year 2016 will be about sharing experiences of wakefulness in ourselves as individuals, and as a collective whole, through information that abounds in our world, and in all sorts of forms–be they in the form of words, images, sounds, or any of the other senses. Authors, artists, musicians, poets, and those from all disciplines and walks of life have and do share their stillness with the collective whole, inviting us to expand not only our individual human freedom, but of humanity as a whole, by harnessing the power of the many. This “crowd sourcing” of awareness, of sharing stillness, enables an exponential expansion of human consciousness on the entire planet. In becoming mindful, and by recognizing the eternal stillness within ourselves and within others, we become co-creators in the most positive sense, contributing to the expansion and evolution of human consciousness.
The alternative to “waking up” is remaining asleep. Remaining asleep means falling prey to available information that would–intentionally or unintentionally–lead us astray, enslave us to tyranny by clouding our thoughts, snuffing out our innate spaciousness, and restraining our innate ability to perceive authenticity. What is more, unconsciousness, remaining asleep, non-alertness during our waking lives, leaves us vulnerable–especially in these perilous times–to the tyranny of those who would enslave us to the will of a powerful few.