If this was a problem in Pascal’s time – more than 300 years ago – it is even more so today. IN a world increasingly driven by the need to achieve, and by advertising, media and social networking, we can physically be in one place but miles away from it in our mind and in the thoughts and aspirations which the images produce. I was reminded of this yesterday, standing in line in a boulangerie – in a beautiful place beside the sea and palm trees – when the man in front of me said “Yes, my body may be on holidays, but my mind is still in the office”. This difficulty to switch off – even in a place of great natural beauty – makes it hard for us to be where we are at this moment, physically, but also in the sense of being with what is the realiuty of our life at this actual time in our history. We find ourselves living in our thoughts, dreams and worries, and strangely sometimes seem to prefer to be there.
All man’s miseries derive from not being
able to sit quietly in a room alone.
Blaise Pascal, French Philosopher.