Author Conversation: Three Pieces of Glass: Why We Feel Lonely in a World Mediated by Screens
About the Episode
Dana Allin and Eric Jacobsen discuss the importance of creating a culture of belongIng to defend against the feeling of loneliness in our society. They explore how living in a digital world surrounded by screens affects all aspects of our lives. They discuss Eric’s book, Three Pieces of Glass and look at how being in the midst of a global pandemic which has increased isolation has changed and added to the ideas Eric discusses in his book. Dana and Eric go into detail about the reasons why screens affect the feeling of being lonely and the unique role the Church plays in decreasing loneliness and creating community.
About Our Guest
Eric Jacobsen is the Lead Pastor of the First Presbyterian Church in Tacoma Washington (ECO Presbyterian). He is the author of numerous books and articles exploring the connections between the Christian faith, local community, and the built environment. He has a PhD in Theology and Culture from Fuller Theological Seminary and is a member of the Congress for the New Urbanism.
Loneliness is increasingly recognized as a major public health crisis that is on the rise and impacting people of all ages. Addressing the crisis of loneliness from a fresh perspective, this book introduces belonging as an overlooked but critical aspect of a flourishing Christian life.
Eric Jacobsen shows how three pieces of glass–the car windshield, TV, and smartphone–are emblematic of significant societal shifts that have created a cultural habit of physical isolation. We feel increasingly disconnected from the people and places around us. Jacobsen explains how adopting everyday practices and making changes in our neighborhoods can help us create a sense of belonging and rediscover what belonging in a place looks like. In order to effectively solve the problem of loneliness, we need to recover patterns and practices of community life that encourage us to form meaningful connections with people and stories that are part of the places where we live, work, and worship. To this end, Jacobsen offers four redemptive strategies for living a more intentional and spiritual life.