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Last Updated Wednesday December 13 2017 08:28 PM IST

The real world where we don't belong

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Internet addiction (Representative image)

We live in a dynamic world, where scientific and technological developments have grown sky high. Everyday newer technology is taking its place, our lifestyle is changing, and we are unknowingly metamorphosing into hybrid versions of our species. Gadgets like smartphones, iPads, and laptops have become an integral part of our lives. Gaining information and communicating with anyone anywhere in the world is just a child’s play today and can be accomplished by a mere click on the mouse or a touch on the smartphone. However, very often we forget the bitter truth that the gadgets and inventions that have made our life so easy and have brought us closer together have also made us far apart, shut us off from the real world around us, and made us live in a virtual world.

The advent of internet has paved the way to an entirely new world. The World Wide Web (WWW) that was spun by Tim Berners Lee has connected the entire world in a huge network and has brought the whole world closer. Banking, shopping, booking travel tickets, cinema bookings, social networking, interacting with dear ones etc. are nowadays accomplished mostly through the internet. It indeed makes things happen faster and easier, however we can’t obtain everything online.

The virtual world can’t give you many things like the joy and happiness when you receive an inland letter from a dear one far away, the smile of the postman who delivers it, the little chit-chat that you may have with the shopkeeper when you go out for shopping, the life of the common man that you get to see when you roam around the city, the talk that you may have with your bank clerk when you visit the bank, the people that you may meet, the friends that you may get, the love and warmth of relations, and in fact the real world around you. We are so engrossed in this deceptive world that we presume to be enjoying the luxuries of technological sophistication, little realizing the truth that we are imprisoned by technology.

When we look around, in restaurants, buses, trains, parks, everywhere we see people mostly glued to their cellphones, completely shut off from the world around them. People busy with whatsapp and facebook - interacting and sharing with friends online but hardly showing any signs of recognition to anyone around; people typing fast on their keypads while making the simple gesture of a smile to someone right beside them seems so irrelevant whereas the artificial online chats with predefined smileys and emotions and lovely words that doesn't really define the real emotions or feelings seems to be genuine and captivating; people trying to capture the present moments in their cameras to enjoy those moments as their past, rather than living in their present. We see people who don't belong here, people who are physically present in the same spatial dimension, but living elsewhere in an unknown world of their own. We see people who really don't know the real world where they ought to live.

The gadgets which are part of our life today has made us prisoners. We have freed ourselves from our bitter past, from the bondage of slavery, colonial rule, apartheid and dictatorship into a democratic world to enjoy the fruits of freedom; however we are back as slaves and prisoners in our own little worlds that we have created.

(The views that have been expressed are personal)

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