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TECHNOLOGY. Good or Bad?
The world is actually changing as you read this! Technology has grabbed us all in one way or another. Debates and discussions ensue whether it’s a good or bad thing. Psychologists, Counsellors and Therapists are faced with increasing numbers of people of all ages who have become addicted to technology and the ‘screen.’
“Time-warping technology, like social media and mobile devices, have changed our perception of our own personal narratives and perception. We live, instead, in the “digital now,” a stream of time that is parallel to the present, but also in competition with it.”
I think though it is not the technology itself that is damaging though it could be argued that it keeps us all passive, rather than engaging more in a fit, healthy and relational life. It’s how we choose to use it that makes it work for us or not. I was caught by this cartoon which suggests an age and attitude gap!
“Your worst fear is a black screen and a lost charger.”
Is having 1500 or 4000 friends on Facebook the same as having 5/10 or more friends in real life that we feel close to and can meet up with and hang out, eating at good restaurants, seeing movies, going on walks and to the newest bar? I actually think that both can enhance our life. I have Facebook friends all over the world that I may never meet but they post fascinating articles and photo’s that I love to read. Also friends I can meet up with are deeply valued and I do feel more connected with them than my online friends I haven’t met. Long term friendships are very special.
“Technology has altered our flow of time … So many of us today have the sensation that time’s arrow is pointing everywhere and nowhere at once. Every digital landmark is an invitation to leave what you’re doing now and go somewhere else and do something else.” Abha Dawesar.
When was the last time you wrote a letter? Most communication is now by email or text. I notice even computers and laptops are becoming redundant with most, particularly younger people doing everything on their smart phones. How much does our work life now impinge on our personal life in the evenings and on weekend’s? We are not allowed to switch off our devices. It’s interesting that France has just brought in a new law that workers can be unavailable after work hours and do not have to stay switched on. Even 10 years ago, we wouldn’t be talking about this. Some of us feel quite anxious if we can’t check our phones and computers for a while and it is easy to become addicted even before we realise it.
I used to say that I was a Luddite which means I wasn’t into new technology. The term comes from 19th-century English textile workers (or self-employed weavers who feared the end of their trade) who protested against newly developed labour-economizing technologies, between 1811 and 1816. They smashed the new machines in protest. I, however have come to terms with how things are and celebrate the wonder of this new world and its opportunities, even though I still struggle to learn how to use it. At the same time, I am very aware of its dangers, personal and political!
So let’s use technology wisely and remember now and then to turn all our screens off and meditate, contemplate, enjoy Nature and’ stop to smell the roses.’
What do you think? How does technology impact you? Has it taken over your life?