We Need Deep People

Superficiality is the curse of our age. The doctrine of instant satisfaction is a primary spiritual problem. The desperate need today is not for a greater number of intelligent people, or gifted people, but for deep people.

Richard J. Foster wrote this 42 years ago in Celebration of Discipline. Unfortunately, it is still true. And amplified by social media.

We can so easily spout off an opinion on some topic without so much as a thought. We see something that appeals to our emotions and hit “share” or “like” without ever stopping to check on the “facts” or statistics. Without even a thought of how we’re being manipulated—by Russian or Chinese trolls, or cynical politicians, or people just intent on spreading hate and discontent.

A woman posted a catchy little video on Twitter last week about what it means to be a woman on the internet. I scanned the thread for a bit out of curiosity. I could not believe what so many men called her (the irony being they were all called out on the video). The least offensive was “whiny”.

I hope these morons didn’t call their daughters these things and bring up a generation of emotionally disturbed women.

Taking a moment to pause, reflect, absorb the message, perhaps they could eventually develop that character trait known as empathy.

Therefore, the reason Foster wrote his book (which I read perhaps 20 years ago when I discovered it, and from which I have taught, and I am still influenced by his thinking). The spiritual disciplines, otherwise known as intentional spiritual practices, lead one deeper.

And we need more, many more, of those deep people.

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