There’s a short documentary-style video on YouTube that discusses the impact technology has on interpersonal relationships (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GJE3XvXgAO8). It got me thinking about how as a society we have become so immersed in technology that the scale is now tipped towards a virtual, isolated world and away from a real world containing emotional connections and intimacy. The net result? Emotional detachment, communication breakdown, scores of failed relationships, the inability to concentrate on a single task, and more.
Case in point…no longer talking face to face, many nowadays sit side by side or across the room from one another and text message or e-mail each other without ever looking up and making eye contact. How many times have you seen individuals play video games on their cell phone at the dinner table? Or, how many times have you waited in line and thought someone was talking to you, only to find out they had their cell phone permanently affixed to their ear and was having a conversation with someone else? It’s not just our kids doing this… adults… including our politicians who are suppose to be representing us are guilty of this too. It’s no wonder brain experts discovered rapid-fire news updates and instant social interaction, such as Twitter and text messaging, actually blunt our values, our social skills, and our ability to interact with others in the real world. Information comes way too fast for our brain to even process. This trend has impacted our conversations too. Thanks to instant messaging … social interactions using cryptic messages such as C U L8TR replace complete, coherent sentences!
Honestly… I’m really not bashing technology, or those who use it. In fact, I have been entrenched in it too having written about technology for the last 30 years. It does work. It does have a place in our culture, in our family lives, and even in our ministries. Technology makes us more “efficient”. It does not, however, make us more loving or more compassionate. Our humanity is meant to be physical in nature, not virtual. Touch is natural; a text message is not. A warm hug, not a 140-character tweet, expresses our love for another. Enjoying a night out and laughing with friends, not hundreds of anonymous followers, bring us joy. As technology continues to advance, as very smart people continue to invent very smart gadgets, there is one thing these very smart people cannot design or create with technology … unconditional LOVE.
Remember … touch a life today “The Little Way” by following the lead and need of others. Also, if you ever thought to yourself, “I wish my customers, knew…”, then be sure to visit White Light Communications at http://www.tothewhitelight.com.