Every year before my birthday, I save up some money. I donate half of it to Help Age India and spend the remaining half on myself. I usually like to go alone when I go to spend that money. So, that’s what I did today. The primary idea behind going alone was because I like observing people. Not like a creepy stalker, but just as a curious dreamer. The mall was mainly filled with families since its a holiday for most people. Conventionally, the idea of spending time with one’s family, fills the mind with images of people having meals together, laughing, chatting and updating each other about the happenings in their lives. And that is how it should be ideally. However, what I saw today was contrasting. Families sitting together for meals were either all typing away on their smartphones/tablets or playing Angry Birds. Technology is overpowering us so much that we find it hard now to spare approximately a minimum of three hours’ undivided attention towards our families. I wish I could say my family time was different, but sadly, no. Although we might talk for sometime, ultimately everybody turns to their smartphones for entertainment. This constant dependence on technology is somewhat scary. It is killing real-time conversations and interactions.
Like a black hole, this technological black hole (or Tech Hole) is sucking humanity in, using technology as a bait. We humans do not know when to stop. I can’t remember the last time we all sat with people at a table without touching our phones even once. Slowly enough, this Tech Hole is just growing bigger and bigger. I am not saying that technology isn’t beneficial. That would only be stupid, because it is extremely advantageous. However, we must know where to draw the limit, in order to reap the maximum benefits.
Earlier during festivals, people genuinely engaged in gift-giving. Now, we only receive a text message, or if we’re lucky, a phone call. And of course, the people who voraciously tag thousands of people in a picture on Facebook with ‘Happy Diwali’ or ‘Happy New Year’. Even if people exchange gifts, they only try to out-do each other. If ‘A’ gifts ‘B’ something worth Rs. 1000, ‘B’ would want to gift something worth Rs. 1500. This apparently seals their ‘high’ status in society. Competition in the workplace is understandable, not in such cases. Very few people gift only because they really want to, and I applaud such people. The way festivals are celebrated have become mechanical too, as everything is carefully planned so that a lot of pictures can be uploaded on Facebook or Instagram. Different poses, different backgrounds. Again, I don’t mean everybody does it this way. But the people who celebrate festivals only for the heck of it, please get a life outside Facebook.
Anyway, festivals are meant to be enjoyed to the fullest and so is family life. Family life is highly underrated so do give it the importance it requires. We’re only human so it is okay to have faults. How we improve ourselves is what matters. I am going to try and curb my texting habits and spend more time making real memories, not memories on Facebook. Stay safe, and Happy Dashami 🙂