Posted by: Michael Rickicki | 01/23/2018


Image result for smartphone nyc subway

The other night’s Dhamma talk has been reverberating in my mind and I keep coming back to the way in which my phone and its apps are designed to capture and enslave my attention. My phone has become like a drug for me and I turn to it in any situation where I am not otherwise engaged in something in order to escape the feelings of anxiety, of angst and the simple feeling of being out of place. Growing up, I used music but, having given up that crutch a number of years ago, I now use my phone with the excuse that I’m using it to “stay informed” or “to learn.”

The truth is that my experience of life without it is often painful and confusing and this is a truth I must comprehend if I ever wish to get beyond it. Renunciation without wisdom and curiosity hasn’t seemed to get me very far but I hope to employ these faculties not simply to judge and criticize myself, but to see more clearly what is going on and why I’m doing it.

For the time being at least, I will attempt to stay off the phone during commutes and at inopportune times as well as completely giving it up for the uposatha. Mara could not have devised a better snare and I, for one, don’t like being anybody’s fool.


  1. Indeed friend. I feel you.

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Shillelagh Studies

A hub for the music, culture, knowledge, and practice of Irish stick-fighting, past and present.