Tuesday, November 08, 2005
“1984” has maybe not quite arrived but we’re getting there. George Orwell’s vision of Big Brother watching the world is a bit off the mark in terms of time, but the idea seems eerily true. I’m still thinking about all those goings on in the suburban cyber cafes. About modern technology. About web cams and the invasiveness of all this junk in our lives.
When web cams first made an appearance I felt the first uneasy nibbles of discomfort just to think of the manner in which they might be used. It looks like those fears were justified. Today it is not hard to see the uses to which modern technology can be put, to simply spy on others, to control the people in our lives, our neighbours, people at work.
A computer specialist I know, who is helping the police to set up new systems, proudly tells me that with the latest device - some kind of extra terrestrial mobile from the sound of it - you can listen to what people are saying within some hundred metres of where you’re sitting. This is supposed to be especially useful in your place of work. How horrible. What all this is leading to, is that you can’t speak, you can’t do anything and soon you wont be able to even think without everyone knowing what is in your mind and exactly what you have been up to.
Sometimes I think, maybe this is what we are meant to learn from the horrors of technology – even if in a rather grotesque fashion. To be more open to each other, to understand each other, not to judge, not to ridicule or control. In short, not to be afraid. In fact to aim for a society in which it wont matter terribly what other people think of us, because we will be able to say what we want to, to anyone, which will make “spying” redundant. If we could live like that, openly and with deep affection for each other there would be nothing to hide, and we would live the truth. We would live in the light of our connectedness, in the light of oneness. We would live, knowing that everything we do and say, has an impact on every other thing - not as we do now, in our own separate boxes in which you simply dont care what happens to anyone outside your box.
If some (or even none!) of this is making sense, maybe it is because a discussion on a subject like this can't be one sided (well a "discussion" by its very nature needs more than one person!!) and anyway, the topic itself can't be adequately dealt with, in a few sentences. There has to be a general sharing of insights and opinions – not of opinions arising from anger and indignation but rather of opinions resulting from really wanting the best for us all. After all, it is only possible to say this much and not more in a short post on a blog.
And now bye for the time being, I am off to Goa for a week with Jyotsna and we are going to be enjoying the sea, sun, and fish there. Not to mention beer and just plain chilling out! If I can get an internet connection I might be able to put in a few words now and then.