Out of Body Experience: The Omnipresence of Mankind in the Digital Era


In the 1970s, Astral Projection and OBE (Out of Body Experience) became a big thing, which isn’t all that surprising when you consider that it coincided with a lot of drug experimentation. This illustration to introduce the concept of God being omnipresent, fully present everywhere all the time, was lost on many of my middle school students. They couldn’t quite get past what would happen if your body needed to go to the bathroom while your spirit was floating around Antarctica watching the penguins march. I suggested that it would be advisable to only practice astral projection while sitting on the toilet just in case. While I don’t actually give much credence to OBE, you have to admit it resulted in some of the Beatles best work. Still, my students have a point. If your soul really could float away from your body for a brief jaunt it would be a very disconnected experience. Your body would sit there like a vegetable while your spirit is just floating around eavesdropping on the world, neither having enough presence to actually have an impact because you are literally two places at once.

In reality what I just described above is not all that different from our current cultural phenomenon of social media. Instead of Astral Projection we now have Digital Projection. Our bodies are walking, working, eating, and even interacting with others while our spirits are floating around the digital dimensions eavesdropping on the world. Neither having enough presence to actually have an impact because you are literally two places at once. I’ve caught myself on numerous occasions having a virtual out of body experience detached from what was happening right in front of me because the deepest parts of me were consumed with the digital dimensions I inhabit.

I’m not suggesting that we throw off social media and all the things that divert our attention from what is happening right in front of us. Social media is not evil and will not  be the catalyst to the decay and demise of human society. However, I do find it interesting that we live in the very same tension with one another that we as Christians often struggle to understand about God. “If God is fully present everywhere all at once then why doesn’t he step in more often?” It’s haunting how often that can be said of us. Never has there been a time in human history where more can be known about an individual without actually and very rarely experiencing their full relational presence. We, just like God, can be right there without others in the room sensing and experiencing our true presence. The question we must ask ourselves at any given moment is why we don’t step in more often?

This entry was posted in Christianity, Community, social media, Technology and tagged , , , , , , by Cedric Lundy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Cedric Lundy

As a teenager who struggled with my self esteem and where I fit in my youth group was the one place that I felt like I could be myself. It also was a place where I could discover my true identity in Christ and discover my true value in God. Over time I realized that God was calling me into full-time youth ministry by kindling a passion and desire to provide teenagers the same opportunity and atmosphere I had that served as a catalyst for me to flourish. After a number of years of doing full-time vocational youth ministry in the local church I recognize more fully the importance of being an encouragement and resource to the people who have the most potential for impact in the life of a teenager... their parents. Those are the reasons why I've begun this blog and if those reasons resonate with you then this blog is for you! Student Ministries Pastor of Middle School Ministry at Church At Charlotte. We seek to empower and release transformed followers of Christ by being stirred by God's word, struggling well with life, and serving others.

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