Raise your hand if you're connected to the Internet or using your computer more hours in the day than not. My hand is up.
Partly that's because my job is online and partly because my laptop has replaced a stereo system and television. Most of my news comes online too as does light reading (though I greatly prefer print for anything longer than a page or two of reading and have no interest in ebook readers). In the decade-plus time I've been a photographer, that too has increasingly involved my laptop. All of that means that there's almost always a computer on in my house, even if only in the background. Not to mention my iPhone. Too much of my life is spent within reach of a computer. I know that and feel that. And it's not fully good.
If that sounds familiar and you want to do something about it, I highly encourage you to check out Shiva Rea's new Yoga Energy Activism Ignites program--which launched last weekend, but continues over several through the end of September. It's not the first energy sabbath/power down/unplug/techno sabbath sort of program, but it's a good one. Rea writes,
Experience a form of activism that is based on taking a retreat. Please join us for a simple, practical and positive response to our current energy crisis - yoga energy activism. From my heart I am inviting you to become a YEA - Yoga Energy Ambassador or just Energy Ambassador ... and if you are inspired, to continue on for the next 6 months till Sept. 21st.
Unplug From Electronics & Electricity, Plug Into Your Self, Your Family, Your Friends
The program encourages us to take an Energy Restoration Retreat, for anything from 3 hours to a full day, by unplugging from social media, computer, your cell phone and instead reading, journaling, being with family and friends in non-electronic activities, practicing longer than normal meditation or asana (which Yoga Downloads, a backer of the project is happy to help out with, suggesting Shiva Rea's Solar/Lunar Flow class) , plus fasting to some degree (eating just one meal, juice fasting, or a fruit and vegetable fast).
You can take the concept further by: Turning off all electronics and appliances (other than your refrigerator--wasting food to save energy is counterproductive); using ghee lamps, soy or beeswax candles, or solar-charged lamps for light; walking or bicycling for transport; and more suggestions on the YEA! site.
Dates From Now Through September
Though at the time of this writing we're a week behind the program--Rea tried to get 1,008 people to sign up for the challenge over Earth Day-Easter weekend--there are YEA! days every other weekend throughout the spring and summer, ending on September 23-27, right around the autumnal equinox, the new moon, and the start of the Hindu festival of Navratri and the Jewish holiday of Rosh Hoshanah.