What we normally call "fasting"
is a food fast. But we intake other things besides food. We ingest
information, for example. And a fast from information can bring
similar benefits for the mind that food fasting gives the body.
So I suggest you occasionally go for a
whole day or a week or even a month on an information fast: No
books, no movies or tapes, no magazines. And no internet (set
up an automatic response first). Except what is required by your
An information fast has the same effect
on your life as a food fast, but in a different sphere. Food
fasting often changes a person's relationship with food, for
the better. Simpler food tastes better. After fasting, a few
berries tastes like a banquet of the gods. You no longer need
the intense artificial stimulation of sugary, fatty, salty foods.
In fact, you have a new repulsion to them. You can feel their
Something similar can happen after an information
fast. You will be more satisfied with simple information. You
no longer need the intense artificial stimulation of news programs
or the titillation of novels. Simple, useful information feels
like a banquet.
Think about something: You normally ingest
an enormous number of memes
(units of information) more than is good for you. It would
do you some good to go without for awhile. It would be more natural.
Do you think hunter-gatherers got much information? I don't think
so. They spent most of their time interacting with people, doing
physical activities, observing the real world, and thinking
all of which would be good for you. And all of which you will
find yourself doing during an information fast. And all of which
would make you happier.
Memes are competing for your attention.
You can't keep up. You will never be able to keep up. There is
far more than you can hold. It is multiplying out of control,
and you have your own brain's prewiring to seek information combined
with advertisers, program directors, writers, webmasters, and
so on all doing their best to get their memes into your
mind. Give yourself a break. Get some perspective. Take a meme