The wireless device, a morally ambiguous piece of equipment, has become a tyrant. What Thomas Merton said in 1961 is eerily prophetic: "This becomes a kind of religious compulsion without which people cannot convince themselves that they are really alive, really 'fulfilling their personality.' They are not 'sinning' but simply making asses of themselves, deluding themselves that they are real when their compulsions have reduced them to a shadow of a true person" (New Seeds of Contemplation, p. 85-6). The modern person doesn't live by text alone, but the continuous stream of texts, Facebook updates, and tweets suggest that many, too many, of us believe that WiFi is the very air we breathe.

How many meetings are interrupted now by coworkers glancing at an incoming text? How many romantic evenings are botched by a screen lighting up? How many people must die before we learn to turn things off?

Get free.

Put the thing down for awhile.

Be human.

If you can't, name it for what it is, an addiction, and get help.