Spending a few days without (much) connectivity or access to massive computing power was fun, but my mind clearly has… a mind of its own.
There I was contemplating my Facebook timeline, and decided to take the “What’s on your mind?” prompt literally. Here’s what came out, likely prompted by my having spent a few weeks mulling a few recent conversations, prevalent societal mores and the way we currently use technology to engage with other people:
Metaphysics is a bitch.
You either question your identity (which is pointless in a society where your online presence is mistaken for your identity) or your day-to-day experiences, which given the way we’ve eroded our social structure over the past three generations or so (removing most social gatherings other than mass ones idolising entertainment, ritualistic tribal warfare - that’s soccer for you lot - or hedonism) are now increasingly shaped by digital echoes of people sharing pictures of kittens (and hardly anything truly meaningful) on the Internet.
Add doubt to the equation and you get either cynicism or nihilism - neither of which is conducive to happiness (the first because it will drive most people away and the second because it will drive everyone else away - which true cynics will arguably consider worthwhile).
Stoicism might be a way out of either predicament, but it’s certainly too outré for today’s fuzzy-wuzzy take on life given that it significantly lowers one’s ability to publish cute baby animal pictures and tends to be rather boring - like the British, but without that self-deprecating sense of humor.
So I’m just going to stick to keeping my wit adequately sharpened (largely by trying it out on the select few who step too close) and enjoy the company of like minds.
(The irony of my posting this on Facebook won’t be lost on those people.)
I think this is symptomatic of my take on technology (and computing in particular), and will likely have more to say about it sometime. But, looking at the broader picture, it’s just another pointed hint (from myself to myself) that I can’t, ever, stop thinking about stuff and need some sort of higher purpose.