The Quick Fix

A young woman I know, at my suggestion, enrolled in a mind-body course organized by a leading expert in mind-body medicine.  The people in the course suffered from a wide spectrum of ailments, physical, psychological and spiritual.  Some were in pain.  Some were depressed and anxious. Others suffered from hypertension, and still others could not sleep at night. There were people who had destructive marriages and family entanglements.

The course drew on the best in modern medicine, psychology and spirituality, East and West. On this base it developed a series of exercises including meditation and mindfulness (devoting full attention to one thing at a time). Those enrolled were expected to do the exercises religiously in class and at home, and for the rest of their lives after the course was over.  Despite the hefty unrefundable cost of the eight week seminar, half the people dropped out after the first few sessions. Another group attended only sporadically. A small minority attended faithfully, did the exercises and completed the course.  The rest wanted a quick fix.

The information technology revolution has gives us the illusion that there are quick fixes for everything.  I-phones and i-pads communicate instantly, and there are those who are annoyed and even angry if they don’t get instant responses.  One executive carries his i-phone and i-pad everywhere, in the bathroom, in the shower, in bed.  One wonders what kind of relationship he has with his wife and children.  The psalmist writes: “A thousand years are in Your sight; As a passing day, an hour of night.” (Psalm 90:4). This is true of God.  But for human beings it takes time. It is time that is well invested with rich dividends.


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About Rabbi Joseph Schultz, PhD

Dr. Joseph Schultz served as Rabbi for congregations in Brookline, MA, Norwich, CT and Cambridge, MA. Dr. Schultz founded the Jewish Studies Program at Boston University where he was Assistant Professor of Religion and at the University of Missouri-Kansas City where he was Oppenstein Brothers Distinguished Professor of Judaic Studies. He helped establish the Center for Religious Studies in 1996, a consortium of six colleges, theological schools and the University of Missouri-Kansas City, offering an interdisciplinary graduate program for the PhD in Religious Studies. Dr. Schultz was its first director.

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