My daughter would not eat without watching her favourite cartoon show. On days she would not sleep without listening to the soft symphonies of nature with birds chirping in the background that I often play on my mobile. When she dozes off and I turn off that music, a guilt stings me. We have transitioned from a generation who would casually listen to the birds singing in our gardens and backyards while doing our daily chores to a generation that experiences it in a secondhand recorded way of bits and bytes.
The truth is inspite of having all the luxuries and comforts of technology, the next generation of humankind is perhaps the farthest from the more powerful and real luxury and charm of pristine nature. There is a whirlwind around each one of us; a whirlwind of 0s and 1s with a thundering vortex of beeps and bangs. The problem is that we’ve got so used to it that we do not realize we are not immune to it. Somewhere along that road, we have stopped listening to the eco beep – the symptoms and alarm of our degrading environment. More so, we have also stopped addressing the vitality of our own entire being.
Rather than working on our inner being, we are working too much on the outside on our planet. Little more done and we will come crashing down with a grim scenario already predicted by the central agencies with no groundwater in the next 20 years in many regions. With species facing extinction, mountains blasted and dissected for commercial projects and catastrophic global warming, the time for words is over now. It’s reached a point where substantial action is required at each individual level.
We have been bitten and bitten quite badly by the snake of rampant consumerism whose venom irrespective of our efforts is spreading slowly. If we introspect our daily habits it comes down to a two-step capsule – use and discard. Every time a new phone comes in the market, everyone wants to devour the latest and discard the well functioning old one. Interestingly, these tech friendly fads have market strategies as their bedrock that drives us to decide unconsciously in almost all the matters. It is an issue we do not want to address. Today, we are relying so much on technology from tracking the time to the security of our bank accounts, that there are too many loose ends that can be threatening.
However, there is another truth we can’t dust of, and that is, we can’t really give up our mobile phones and technology in its various forms. It cannot be done certainly! The tech-world and science have a pertinent place in history as well as in making our daily lives better. They deserve credit, but the point is atleast we should be cautious of becoming the new Don Quixote – living a life of illusion, self created problems and staying stuck in a virtual world bereft of reality.
Alteast, we should not forget the art of living in the moment and connecting with nature. Perhaps, we have forgotten precisely that but time is passing by and a cure is needed because at the end would we have the luxury of an author to correct the faults of his first draft?
I don’t think so.
Published in Hindustan Times on 27.9.2019