The Archbishop of the catholic church of England has recently called upon teenagers to reduce time spent on, chat”, websites.
He says that it is leading to teenagers developing false relationships and plunging into depression after they break up.
Few months ago, a psychologist in U.K. had also extorted people to move away from, “chat sites” and interact more with human beings, for improved mental health. Nothing can be further from truth.
As technology is advancing, what we are loosing in fact is the, “human interaction”.
This literally means one human being talking to another face to face and spending some time together. But for a vast majority of urban dwellers, across the globe this has reduced drastically.
In better times before, evenings used to be time for the whole family to sit together and discuss the day, their problems, dreams and aspirations.
It brought them close together. Nowadays, all members are always glued to their favorite T.V. channel or internet site, till time for sleeping. Talking has been reduced to what is utmost necessary or unavoidable.
Before, neighbors were the ones knowing all and all about you, maybe more than you knew. Nowadays, in big cities, people don’t even know the identity of their neighbors.
Social interaction between friends and neighbors has also reduced to, S.M.S. and E-mail. Visiting people or, “just dropping in for a chat”, is now considered impolite and impinging on other’s privacy.
This is a very western idea but fast catching up in cities across the world. I wonder which people initiated it. My only question to them is what privacy one human being needs from another, except while dressing, bathing or sleeping? Every human being has the same kind of activities.
This sense of individual privacy has spread to the extent that parents cannot question the activities of their adolescent and teenage children or offer any advice.
These false ideas of,” individual privacy”, not, “wasting” time in talking has harmed the society in many ways if analyzed in correct perspective.
Depression and suicide rates have been high in western countries after industrial development. It is because of sense of loneliness.
A person needs to talk, to give outlet to his feelings. Seeking the fulfillment of this urge, people are talking to strangers on various internet sites. But this cannot replace the warmth and closeness which actual physical interaction provides.
When loneliness persists, he or she goes into depression. While under stress whether physical or mental, everyone knows how soothing the company of a close one is, even if he or she speaks few words but is there around.
Habit of taking drugs and other addicting substances is the direct outcome of this loneliness.
Increase in juvenile crime and sex experimentation rate is also the direct outcome of less interaction between human beings in various relations. Top celebrities like Michael Jackson and other Hollywood stars suffered from this loneliness and were addicted to drugs.
This shows that money and fame cannot replace warmth provided by human relationships.
Psychiatrists have prospered a lot in developed world and are doing good business in other parts also. Teenage counseling, adolescence counseling, counseling for dating, before marriage, after marriage, during pregnancy, e.t.c. and for what not for what purpose have all these professional counselors come up?
There was no need for counselors had people been interacting with their families. For centuries it was the family members or close friends advising on such matters.
The funny thing is people do not like to talk for free, to their close ones on, “personal matters”, but do not mind talking for hours, that too after giving heavy fees to psychiatrists and counselors.
The self esteem of a person is also boosted up while interacting with people close to him. A lonely person looses his sense of self esteem and self confidence also.
There are plenty of cases where dead people were found in their apartments at the stage where bodies started putrefying.
This is the direct result of lack of interaction between close neighbors. Thanks should be given to bandits of the world because for at least to check their activities, “neighborhood watch”, is a concept generated now.
At least people will come to know of the names of their neighbors.
I am not against electronic or technical development in any way. Only thing is we should be cautious against turning into machines ourselves with development.
Nature has made man a social animal. So retain that tendency and encourage it among others. Again, I am not advising one to put aside work and chit chat. No. But, one should try to spend more of the free time talking with family members, friends and neighbors.
Very soon you will realize how loved, light and carefree you will feel.
It will also be a good exercise for youngsters to learn. They will learn to listen to other’s view points and make them more tolerant.
More human interaction will certainly be more beneficial for human beings as whole.
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