I am an Occupational Therapist and work primarily with children. Even though my smartphone helps me expedite my work and is highly convenient, I try to limit my use for myself and my family. Though I don’t feel a constant tug towards using it, I still recognize the harm to my family when they see the smartphone as a necessary tool. I purchased a flip phone to use as my regular phone and try to use my smartphone for work related uses. One day recently, I was assessing a young boy from the Chassidish community here in Baltimore. I needed to use a timer for one part of the assessment, and the only one I had with me was on my smartphone. Feeling a little uncomfortable, I asked him if he minded if I used a smartphone as a timer. He shook his head and said, “It’s the yetzer hara. I don’t want to see it. Could you please keep it away from my sight?”
I felt an overwhelming sense of happiness from his response. Instead of feeling frustrated or exasperated, I was warmed to my heart. His sense of clarity was so crystal clear that he didn’t even want to see the device that causes people so much distraction and shmutz. We should all be zoche to have our children not even be tempted by the these devices and see loads of nachas.
From Text Triumphs, a Bi-Weekly TAG Baltimore Column in Baltimore Jewish Home