Technological Opioids by Shernaz Wadia SignUp

Technological Opioids
Shernaz Wadia Bookmark and Share

Any drug such as morphine, with an effect similar to opium is an opioid. 

When technological inventions become the opioids, particularly for students and stay-at-home senior citizens, boredom begins to infiltrate life. It constipates an active mind and upbeat emotions.  All the inventions that lure us and are portrayed as the analgesic for tedium, become disease causing viruses, if used unwisely.

To alleviate blue moods we get enslaved to these so called mood-altering gadgets and the obnoxious circle begins. We try to drive away listlessness by getting glued to the television; too much screen time can affect the brain negatively, get one to overeat and exercise less. Narcissistic hankering for public recognition and instant gratification from others on social networking sites could lead us to making erroneous choices and eventual frustration in the real world.  We start looking for other futile ways to run away from the self. Sometimes it is too late before we realise how adversely our physical, mental and emotional health is impacted by our dependence on the virtual world, often bringing us just a short step away from depression. 

So what happened to outdoor entertainment, useful engagement of time and stimulating friends? Poof! They disappeared as soon as we discovered the mouse that does not squeak but brings everything to the doorstep with just a click. These time-savers have opened a pathway to monotony for many.  If we allow ourselves to hit the rock bottom of dullness we will begin to surface fast. There is no farther down we can go. Then let us rise and take a look deep within: am I bored because I am no more than another sheep blindly scampering after others? Doing what seems to be the ‘in’ thing?

As Terry Pratchett has said we humans have managed to invent boredom in this most wondrous universe. In my opinion and from experience I believe boredom arises from one’s own mind, from our incapacity to engage fruitfully with our inner self and find joy in the world around us. We must break out of our orbits; rather than rotate dully along predictable trajectories we must recognise the fact that only we can make our own life interesting and find ways to do it. Often it is the fear of facing one’s self that leads us to immerse our lives in dull routines. Rather than be incapacitated by self-generated bleakness, we should make it our purpose to defeat it. Creativity, rediscovering hobbies, reconnecting on a personal level with friends and family, utilising time in meaningful ways rather than ‘to kill’ it are some approaches out of this rut we get into believing it to be an easy ride on an expressway.

“Boredom is the conviction that you can't change ... the shriek of unused capacities.”
Saul Bellow, 
The Adventures of Augie March

I love that second bit in the quote — the shriek of unused capacities. Be quiet, listen.  At the core of our dullness there is something yelling to be freed; a yearning suppressed during our decades of busyness.  Sometimes we allow the fear of failure or rejection to stunt our shining selves and so limit capability.  When ennui appears to shut the doors to fun and excitement, when we sit pokerfaced, cursing the monotony of life, that is when we must bring out our aptitudes and do justice to them. Many of us hide our talents because we lack confidence. Those talents are screaming out to be utilised and it is criminal not to bring them to the fore. The least we can do is show our gratitude to the Universe by showcasing our latent faculties and using them in a way that benefits us and others.

Boredom is nothing but the experience of a paralysis of our productive powers, says Erich Fromm.

So, let us free our productive powers from paralysis.

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Comments on this Blog

Comment Thank you for your comment.

I agree people are waking up to the harmful effects of technology. There are many who take time off these gadgets on their own. But that we need detox rehab centers is sad. And what is worse, there could be some newer technology that would pull people back into its snare.

01/20/2020 00:27 AM

Comment Technological opioids. That's succinct.

People are slowly dawning to the fact that MAYBE staring at phones for more than 2 hours a day is perhaps a terrible addiction. More so when ordinary conversation between spouses, kids, families and friends get sometimes overshadowed with phones and staring at phones.

I believe an undercurrent and a opposite reaction to this behavior is arising and eventually most people will frown upon it and actively try to dissuade people from doing this.

There will be digital detox rehab centers soon ( I am sure there would be some of them already)

01/16/2020 21:08 PM

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