If you haven’t already seen it, check out “Look Up” a short film about social media.
“So look up from you phone, shut down the display,
take in your surroundings, make the most of today
just one real connection, is all it can take
to show you the difference that being there can make.”
I am an introvert, who lived without TV for a decade, who lived unplugged from computers, who started with a two week silent meditation retreat in 2001 at IMS and eventually had spans of time where I did not speak for months. I have practiced being present. I have lived slow. I have known a life on foot, in nature, or sitting quietly alone.
On March 20, 2014, I got a smartphone. So for me, the difference in my life with and without that smartphone is very dramatic. I am still adjusting. All the hectic stress of my previous life as an overworked computer programmer came back with the introduction of one small device. I am more connected, and that is good. It has brought people back into my life I had lost contact with and introduced me to new people on the other side of the world. Yet it is also invasive. The pace of my life has gone from a stroll to drag racing. I am overwhelmed.
There is some middle ground that is best. Social media doesn’t replace real humans meeting in person, for hugs and smiles and shared meals. Life should be actively lived, not passively watched. Posting on Facebook or in a blog is not the same as knowing if you are heard.
So for myself, and I hope others too, it is good to see a film like “Look Up” and remember that life is meant to be shared with others, and social media isn’t a replacement for looking into the eyes of someone you love.