[Continuation of Part I]
Not only words like iPhone, Android, iOS (I Robot and “I Operating System”) cast the dark spell of identification with electronic devices, but curiously these gadgets are now so closely intimate with our senses that keyboard and mouses have been gradually disappearing. Touching virtual images is much more appealing, because touch is sexuality.
The gradual removal of keyboards from computers goes hand in hand with the consequential erosion of language we witness all through the internet: abbreviations, destruction of grammar, iconization of emotions and adoption of memes.
Moreover, the projection of “self identity” into a device quickly leads to the unprecedented adoption of virtual masks and personas. Social network websites are a clear example of this. Role-play, fictional personalities, unchained pleasure-driven behavior, logos as faces and fiction as reality.
In pop music, human voices are often digitalised and given a robotic edge. Words are cut, pasted and reassembled into rhythmic drumbeats for techno and dance tunes.
We fell into the Saturnian hands of Chronos, the lord of time and its heavy machinations.
Modern communication nowadays happens in short bursts of fragmented sentences that suffocate any further reasoning. We just look for agreement or rupture on televised opinions to swiftly “close the case”, like judges in a courtroom.
We are driven by anxiety, making our reasoning as quick and superficial as our breathing patterns. We can’t dive deep with an open question. Everybody wants answers now. Questions give us discomfort, especially when they force us out of the crowd’s lullaby.
There’s no interest nor stamina for study and research. Battery life is that short. Like that of a portable phone.
It should be obvious by now that losing the ability to speak and concentrate isn’t evolution, nor an advancement of any sorts.
So in what terms is technology actually helping?
Nothing’s wrong with technology itself, but the way we use it and rely on it is an entirely different matter, one that we should individually question before rushing to the next generation portable device and adopting internet jargon.
“I wonder why progress looks so much like destruction” – John Steinbeck
Darwinism, Eugenics and Transhumanism are the result of post-enlightenment Newtonian ideology that sees nature in mechanistic ways and man as a solitary automaton in a dead and hostile world of survivors. Which also leads to the subsequent dichotomy “man vs nature”. Hence the impelling need for a transhumanist to “beat” nature and death.
The ultimate delusion of grandeur: man as his own demiurge.
“Basic to this image of the world is the notion that the world consists of stuff […] As pots are made of clay. And the potter imposes its will on it and makes it become whatever he wants” – Alan Watts
It’s the religion of materialism and physicism.
The new savior is science. It promises you a better tomorrow.
But projecting father figures onto patriarchal priests or scientists is ultimately the same thing. White robes, black robes. Pick your team.
What I’ve described are few of the many consequences of the psychological whiplash we accept and tolerate in the name of connectivity and entertainment.
Most of the gadgets we use are in fact abused or completely useless.
But as long as we remain stressed, dysfunctional, alienated and medicated, always waiting for big daddy to bring us the next generation toy or heavenly utopia, we’ll forever be the perfect social bot.
“Its name is Progress, and the Dream of Progress continues to fuel global civilization’s expansion everywhere, converting human beings into mechanized, self-obliterating puppets, nature into dead statuary.” – David Watson
“Metropolis”, Fritz Lang, 1927
“Modern Times”, Charlie Chaplin, 1936
“The Spirit of our time”, Raoul Hausmann, c. 1920