In recent weeks, fears about the power we give to technology and the role it plays in our lives have continued to grow. The steady drumbeat about fear of hackers, bots and neo-Nazi trolls has grown into full-fledged chaos over revelations about massive amounts of personal information harvested on Facebook.

The political ramifications of all of this aside, as a community as a whole, people are increasingly asking themselves if social media and technology has given a disproportionate control of their lives to algorithms.

At the beginning of the month, Farhad Manjoo, technology columnist for The New York Times, wrote about his decision to unplug, at least in part, from technology—opting to gather his news not from social media, but rather from print newspapers. When people looked into his claims of disconnecting from social media, however, it became clear that he had in fact tweeted hundreds, if not a thousand, times over the two months he said he had gone off—leading to the larger question if we even could disconnect.

In the midst of this maelstrom of digital debate, the annual SXSW festival was held in Austin, Texas, celebrating the confluence of technology, digital communications, film and music. I had the pleasure to attend once more and host our annual #openShabbat, an unplugged networking event and Shabbat meal in the heart of the festival. The experience of uniting with hundreds of people from all walks of life to unplug temporarily from the technology that so often tethers us allowed us to forge new connections that we otherwise might miss. Suddenly, serendipitous conversations can take place, unencumbered by the need to immediately like, follow, selfie and share.

It also allows us to reframe our approach to technology as a whole and focus on its true, core purpose. Yes, technology can drag us down, it can become corrupted and used to troll, attack and destroy—but if we connect to individuals and inspire others to do good for themselves and the world, we can find true transcendence in technology.

Glimmers of that transcendence can be found throughout the festival, but perhaps most profoundly—and personally—at the “The Last Survivors: Memories of the Holocaust” panel.

There, Holocaust survivor Pinchas Gutter shared his experience from the war across platforms—spoken, written, filmed and now recreated via an A.I. “Hologram.” Technology as a key to not just preserving our past, but teaching for the future, was on full display.

The panel closed with a teaching from the Baal Shem Tov, that "in remembrance lies the secret of redemption." Its message for the history of the Holocaust is clear to all, but in that teaching lies a profound message for how we use technology today:

Memory is the thread that binds us to each other and to our Creator on high. When we remember the Divine spark within all of us, and the Divine potential for the technology we use, therein lies the secret to redemption. We remember, and thus we transcend.