YES: Speeding up the pace of life brings many disadvantages and problems for modern society, making the advantages of slowing down a comparatively attractive one.
In many of our economic activities and work-lives, excessively speeding up the pace of life has resulted in disastrous financial and health consequences, making the act of slowing down practical for individuals, institutions and entire societies.
In many intellectual and educational endeavors, slowing down helps engage the deep learning centres and processes of the human brain, facilitating the acquisition of complex knowledge which is increasingly vital to modern life.
From a moral and ethical standpoint, slowing down provides opportunities for many to reflect on our personal choices, relationships and decisions in life, which is invaluable in a modern world that compels us to make many decisions hastily and move on to the next stage without due consideration or insight.
As a modern consumer driven society, slowing down the pace of our material acquisitions may yield important and practical benefits, as we collectively engage in the act of reducing, reusing and recycling, thereby investing in our collective environmental well-being.
NO: Modernity thrives on speed and slowing down the pace of life is a regressive rather than progressive act, and would be a disadvantage in many aspects of our lives.
The dangers of speeding up excessively are undeniable but the economic benefits of speeding up moderately are more than comparable and should be encouraged, as they increase the many factors – pace of production, transaction volumes and acceleration of learning cycles – that are integral to economic growth and prosperity.
We live in a modern age saturated with data and information, making the act of slowing down and processing information a less viable one compared to developing skills that speed up our capabilities to process complex knowledge.
Despite our romantic notions concerning the purported benefits of slowing down, the pace of scientific research, technological development and its integration into our lives should be speeded up, as doing so provides us with more avenues and innovations to solve the major societal challenges of our time.