Fr. Denis Lemieux, a Canadian priest at Madonna House, offers some thoughts on how to stay human when everything around you is an i-something.

In The I-Choice: Staying Human in a Digital Age (2013), he says,

So, the first point in the human use of technology is that we need to use it like human beings. In other words, we have to think about it. We have to be the one choosing. We have to be free about our choice.

So, you can say, “You know, I really don’t want to be on Facebook—it’s a stupid waste of time!” Or, equally, “I do want to be on Facebook—it helps me to stay in touch with people.” Or, “I don’t want an i-pod—I find it makes me a bit too self-absorbed,” or on the other hand, “I want an i-pod—it gives me easy access to so many things I treasure.”

The key thing, as far as I can see, is not the actual decision we make, but that we are the ones thinking it through and deciding. We must not allow ourselves to be manipulated or pressured to go along with what everyone else is doing.

Of course, it’s understood that on the job thing are different—we all have to work with the technology of our trade. As I have said, I wrote this book on a laptop and e-mailed the manuscript to my publisher—quill and ink were not involved in the process. But, away from your job (hoping you have one!) and its proper demands, it is utterly necessary to be free and sovereign in the choices you make.

There is a very basic issue of human dignity at stake here. Don’t allow yourself to be e-bullied. Don’t be an i-patsy, a cyber-wuss. (pp. 38–39)

i-Agree. Relax and listen to what life is really about in the end.


Denyse O’Leary is a Canadian journalist, author, and blogger.

Denyse O’Leary is an author, journalist, and blogger who has mainly written popular science and social science. Fellow Canadian Marshall McLuhan’s description of electronic media as a global village...