ARE WE BECOMING SLAVES OF MODERNIZATION?

A magnificent morning with a splendid sunrise in a small village. A small old thatched home with a small, yet a neat surrounding .the surrounding space contains plants and a small box like shaped home for hens. The morning alarm is the sound of the “Cock-a-doodle-doo” by the cock in the traditional way of standing on top of its small house. With the wake-up call, the elder lady in the house wakes up and starts cleaning the place, and the smoke evolving from the chimney of the house, as she starts cooking too. The place is well-kept single handed by the lady of the house. She wakes up everyone and simultaneously keeps on her household work too. All gets-up and starts on the daily chores. Kids wake up and start playing with the hen and chicks in the surrounding. They run around in the sand, the grass among the plants touching each and everything in nature. From one corner the father laughs at their play, another corner the mother is scolding them for spoiling the place. Yet, there is joy in the house- a harmony that is untouched by the modernization.

Nowadays, the scenario is totally different. Everyone wakes up with mobile alarms, gone are the days of even the clocks. Instead of God or seeking the blessings from the Lord, all are busy in checking WhatsApp and Facebook even before opening their eyes. There are no conversations, it is just message – binaries flowing everywhere. Every neck is bent down on to the mobiles or pads. Everything has changed.

The other day as I was passing the street near my home, I noticed few kids playing in the rain, with all the mud all over them. There was no tinge of scare or anybody to take care of them. They were like free-birds, enjoying their flight in the mother nature. This lets me think when was the last time I took a walk in the rain, walked around the muddy area and enjoyed the down pour. For a second I felt jealous of them.

Another day, from the balcony of my apartment, I kept watching the kids in the construction site. When our kids were enjoying the bliss of luxury, they were playing with single toys. Now kids don’t need toys they are all clogged to the mobile and iPad screens.

Technology has truly drained the childhood, making them more machine like. One day the whole will be like binaries- 1 and 0  with no one to distinguish the feelings of the heart. The insensibility created by the modernization is affecting the minds. Everyone around us is getting addicted to the facilities and the progression made by the world. Going back to nature and becoming one has become close to impossible.

We are slowly hurting the mother nature, to increase the comfort. But what does this comfort lead us

But what does this comfort lead us to?

Yes, Obesity, laziness, illness, and much more. The world is becoming a comfort-zone for all the illness too. Increase in pollution due to deforestation. There is a huge gap that is developed in the people with regard to income. And more over our culture is deteriorating gradually, unknowingly by our own deeds.

It is time to realize the impact we are creating in the world – distinguish the positive and the negative ones and react accordingly. We need to methodize some ways to preserve the nature, as well as our culture. We need to teach our kids the beauty of living in nature. Let them understand the life in a rightful manner.

WE’RE CHANGING OUR WORLD WITH TECHNOLOGY

Few years back I came across a documentary, “Love Child“. The documentary is based on a heart wrenching incident where a South Korean couple starved their 3-month old daughter to death because they were addicted to an online video game. Do you know what is the irony of the story? In the game they were addicted to, they were nurturing their virtual child while they left their real child unattended.

The game ‘Prius’ allowed them to create virtual characters of themselves as if they have a new life, after certain levels in the game they would be awarded with a child whom they would be parents for. A virtual reality game made them forget their real life’s responsibilities for a 12 hour stretch starving their baby to death. The state in which the child was found by the police in their apartment not only shocked the entire nation of South Korea but many other people around the world were left to wonder how much technology can effect us. 

Parenthood is considered sacred in South Korea, hence it is not culture but the addiction to ‘technology’ which is the main culprit. This is just one story, there are numerous others. 

Advent of internet, advancement in technology are the greatest achievements man has ever made, truly letting us do more in less time. Technology is not confined to internet, mobile, computer or other high-tech inventions, but any invention that can improve our life-style falls under the umbrella of technology, like airplanes, washing machines etc ., 

Majority of our every day tasks have some connection with technology. We cannot step out of our homes without mobile phone – we loose connectivity, we cannot navigate, we cannot even remember important dates without reminders.

It may not have been so obvious during the early stages of the development of technology, but our technology-driven world has taken a toll on today’s relationships. The use, and now dependency on cell phones, tablets and computers that our society faces today has changed the way we live. While there are many advantages of it, we cannot escape the negative effects of technology. 

  • Lack of socializing: We are so engrossed in our smart phones that we barely feel the need to socialize. We are able to talk, exchange feelings with anyone around the world in the blink of an eye making us totally forget what it is to have a fun evening with friends in a patio. 
  • Lack of physical activity: Cars, grinders, washing machines helped us save time but deprived us of physical activity. Video games erased the need of playgrounds confining our kids to play indoors. The second major reason to obesity to over-eating is ‘not exercising’…
  • Loneliness: Reduced interactions with people in office, at home is increasing at an alarming rate making people very busy with their virtual lives. While we are in a party we find it convenient to stare at our mobile, earphones with music on we commute, slowly we will find ourselves to have fallen victim to loneliness.
  • Reduced Empathy: This might sound untrue, but according to psychologists more population is becoming self-centered and selfish, making us less altruistic. Our anger levels have increased, carelessly we say “Get lost” or “Don’t ever talk to me again” forgetting that gadgets can be used and thrown, not people. 
  • Deteriorated Health: Continuous exposure to radiations emitted by screens of gadgets cause harm to eyes. Over exposure leads to head aches, migraines. Wrong postures lead to neck injuries, cervical spine or  even can damage parts of brain.

Aforesaid are very much inter-related. They can effect our family, social interactions and relationships very negatively increasing stress. As we run out of time spending our precious life with lifeless gadgets we cannot engage time into useful activities or even self ! 

At this juncture I want to share something that disturbs me when I hear it from my colleagues and friends – cellphone distracted parenting. As both husband and wife are working, they don’t get time to deal with tantrums of their kids . The most opted resort is to engage kid with a cellphone. Parents take pride saying, “He/She knows how to browse for favorite videos to play them”. Usage of gadgets at such tender age deteriorates brain growth. Studies also reveal that such kids play less with other kids, eat high levels of sugar and grow up depressed. 

Environmental damage, increase of global temperature are warning us of getting deprived of a place to live. Air pollution, water pollution, noise pollution, industrial waste are disrupting ecology. Heard of the word “technotrash” ? Waste produced from outdated or damaged electronics contains hazardous materials gets disposed making the environment unsafe.

I am in no way against technology or down-playing how awesome it is. I love being part of the generation who saw many strides in technology. We know exactly how it is to live with and without technology. Without the current technology you couldn’t be reading this article. While being thankful to technology to have helped us have this seamless  life, it would be wise to not fall prey to it so much that we stop to live, live in the true sense appreciating our relationships, lovely people around.

Technology… is a queer thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other. ~C.P. Snow