“The system of nature, of which man is a part, tends to be self-balancing, self-adjusting, self-cleansing. Not so with technology.” E. F. Schumacher
“If we continue to develop our technology without wisdom or prudence, our servant may prove to be our executioner.” Omar N. Bradley
“The world is very different now. For man holds in his mortal hands the power to abolish all forms of human poverty, and all forms of human life.” John F. Kennedy
None of us likes to be out of control nor have things out of control. Yet, our technology has totally gotten well beyond the limits. We all fight for power and freedom along with liberty, but perhaps media and technology has deprived us of all of this. I believe it is manipulating, and has lulled us into an addictive type of need and love.
I use the word love because most of us can’t spend a long time away from our “Stuff”. Anyone with the tiniest bit of techno savvy is seen holding something within their hands. Some people almost appear desperate as they cling to their I- phones, I-pads and whatever. Most people have already inculcated their kids into the habit. A child as young as two might be seen holding a device and pressing buttons.
Can we admit we have gone beyond our limit ? Some people are on computers or some other device right before they go to bed. If one spouse is in the bathroom, they pick their tool up from their nightstand. It can’t be far frm them in case they get a message of some kind. I wonder at the messages, that always seem to be so important, that they can’t let them wait for a better time. There is no privacy. People including bosses, and everyone else, can reach us at any time. Forget about discretion. We can’t escape the ever-ending messages coming through.
Whenever you are in the company of someone who is obsessed with their cell phone, or I pad, or I phone, you find their eyes drifting down to it and then their fingers get busy as they smile. They have totally forgotten who they are physically with, and devote their attention to the device. You, the physically present person, must wait for their return. Some people attempt to hide their focus on their device by softly drifting into another room. It amazes me that they think you don’t notice their movements, nor their lack of attention to the present moment with you.
It is so widespread now, that most of us who are not dependent, just get used to waiting, for these habituated people, to finish whatever messages they are receiving. I know when I am in the presence of these users, I don’t even mention the interruption anymore. I just wait for the interference to end. I still find it annoying, but it is right up there with the waiting time at the doctor’s office. You don’t like it, or enjoy it, but there are no alternatives so you accept it.
I love it when some people think, they are covering their dependent behavior. This appears to be even worse. One can believe themselves now, to be unimportant, as well as stupid. They believe they are fooling us. They keep it on their laps at a restaurant, and glance down now and again. Their smile, when they look down is one giveaway. Other people do a chore, while they peek at their device. They let out the dog, and stand outside, viewing and sending messages.
Some people believe falsely of course, that if they share the message with you, that somehow it makes it okay. You might also get the person who confesses they sent a message earlier, and were waiting for the reply they just received. You have to praise the people who excuse themselves formally, to receive or send a text message. They get up, act important, express a serious look on their faces, and proceed to another room for privacy.
It seems like all of this might be a danger to them. Are they paying attention to their world? They might trip and fall as I did when I attempted to dial a phone number while walking. I had seen it done so many times by others, but unfortunately I am not a good candidate, as I missed the end of the sidewalk and fell on the street. Only my ego got hurt.
I haven’t mentioned those people who text while driving. I place this right up there with drinking and driving. They are focused on typing and reading. I hate to think about those drivers when I enter my car. I know of one accident in which a young girl blamed it on her shoes rather than admit she was sending a text. Her fine was less.
Media promotes Facebook, and other social communities. Now we can share the food we’re making for dinner, and the last time we showered. We have the ability to get one hundred people or more, to commiserate with us, when we are having a bad day. We display the beach area we are visiting, with no care for those who are out of a job or relationship. I know this might be a good thing for some people, but I need more than words on a page.
I need the intimacy of a face, exhibiting care and concern. I like the sound of voices, and seeing expressions change. I like to hear more words than a simple feel better, even if it is only one person, instead of one hundred. Somehow it reaches me more. Some people suffer depression, from all of the wonderful places and things people expound about on Facebook. Your life can appear very dim in comparison. We really shouldn’t compare ourselves to anyone.
In actuality, it is an assessment of who can gain more friends. This doesn’t appear to be a healthy media device, for a downtrodden individual. Now we might be jealous of many more people, rather than the close friend. Confidence and security become things of the past. Competition reigns even for young girls, who are competing with their faces and bodies. What are we valuing in this world? Are we aware of inner qualities, or is that something we laugh at? Has our virtue and our morals gone AWOL?
The tumultuous disruptions, throughout the world, are now able to touch our children within our homes. People with questionable motives, can enter our once safe environment, and destroy our family. There are deceitful people who are bent on lying, and coercing our children. It is difficult to monitor this. These people don’t have to show a face, or it can be a false image. As I already mentioned, faces give emotions.
Another area technology is affecting us, is within the social area of High School. There are students who arenow ridiculed, twenty four seven. Being a teen, they have faith in their ability to handle themselves. The pain and crushing of their spirit, may eventually destroy them. Many are left with fear and or anxiety. Confidence is gone, and insecurity is instilled. I ponder about the perpetrators of such deeds. Because they are wounding with a tool type of device, likely they feel less blame. They are not involved in the full fledged pain inflicted, when one sees hears or experiences it.
I am not sure if the wrong doers are aware, that they are hurting real people. If you call somebody a name to their face, and see their reaction, it might well up feelings of sorrow for your action. When such is not the case upon using a machine, one is deprived of observing the actual pain inflicted. It appears that technology use, releases one of blame, and societal constraints and or restrictions. It becomes a covert operation. It is similar to mob rule where no one is at fault, when people or property are injured. Hiding behind a machine, permits freelance slander, manipulation, influence and suffering.
Perhaps we are becoming desensitized, from sensing any remorse, due to our addiction to technology. We have less time for emotions, when we are busy with our fingers tapping devices. Our minds are focused on how well, and how much we can do with these devices. Little time is given to our altruistic nature. Our minds overtake and rule the heart. Some people are proud of the greatest damage they can accomplish. Perhaps they are bullied in other areas of their lives, and find relief in bullying others on-line.
Our machines keep us too busy to reflect, on what we have done wrong. Instead of man creating machines that are more human like, we are transforming into more of a machine like existence. This is not true of everyone, but it certainly requires our heartfelt thought.
Some homes are now quiet after dinner, because even the kids are using a device. Our language is even suffering. People use short words, to convey a message. I find people using less words, and less sensory adjectives, when speaking with or using technology. We have too many notes to send out, and too many people to respond to. With so many friends, can we understand that we are not gaining a close relationship with anyone? Do we care anymore about depth, or quality of love within our lives?
I have noticed our conversations with our spouses, are shorter and curt. I have observed that we all use less of our sense of sight, sound, and sensory. Our hearts are being deprived of compassion, empathy and love. Some things just have to be felt through the heart first. Technology is awesome, but will man misuse it as his reputation proves. What starts off as a good thing, may devour mankind of being humane.
Do we need a law about restricting the use of our devices? Man wants dominance. Now is the time to gain it by turning our technology off when in the presence of physical people. We have the self-control, to restrain their influence and use. As smart and capable as our devices are, they can be monitored, and they do have on and off switches. Let’s not willingly turn our command over, to a mindless and heartless device’s ability, to overtake our influence and in the process, our humanity.
“Technology is the knack of so arranging the world that we don’t have to experience it.” Max Frisch
“Soon silence will have passed into legend. Man has turned his back on silence. Day after day he invents machines and devices that increase noise and distract humanity from the essence of life, contemplation, meditation.” Jean Arp
“It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity.” Albert Einstein
“The real danger is not that computers will begin to think like men, but that men will begin to think like computers.” Sydney J. Harris