Tuesday, 22 January 2008

Virtual versus Real

Swami Nikhilaananda wondered:

"If DSL or power line goes for a tizzle
How many net crazy lives would fizzle?"

We are aware of, or if not, then made aware of two kinds of worlds that exist now. I am not talking about the earth and space, hell and heaven, netherworld and its complement... I am talking about the real world and the virtual world. And by virtual world I refer to the lives people live on the internet. Real of course, is YOU as a person and your life.

Virtual world is the more fascinating world as of now, at least as of this discussion. Virtual world is much larger than the real world, more fantastic in many ways - larger because of the several terrabytes of memory being contributed by each server and more fantastic because normal rules and laws don't apply - by laws I mean Newtonian and Coulombian (not legal) You can take birth at the moment of your choice... All you need to do is create your account. You can die at the moment of your choice - delete account.

You can make friends, or catch up with old ones through social networking sites. Interesting that although people haven't met in the real world, they make friends online, in the virtual world. Of course, as long as the real and virtual worlds remain apart
[You'll laugh if you watch Seinfeld, skip this bracket otherwise - wrt George and his worlds]
When the worlds come together and mix up, then there might be trouble. This statement I make with reference to the couple of deaths that were due to some mistakes/crimes committed by people on popular social networking site Orkut, where virtual friends (total strangers) decided to meet in real world, and one killed the other.

You'll be surprised how many people have fallen in love online and some have even gone ahead and married (some got killed, but let me skip that now) Some live online lives. Some talk to others only online but when they come face to face in the real world they pretend as if they don't know or recognise each other. Online they chat for hours. The online world eliminates poor memory problems that absent minded husbands might have - such as forgetting anniversaries (angry wife tapping feet with rolling pin in hand, grumbling) because you can have settings to automatically remind you about it, even a week back or earlier... Send gifts and cards, that also online... And here's something even more weird. One of my friends told me that there is a place where you can also get online jobs with money and profession also applicable only online - meaning that in real life that money is worthless, but you can buy perhaps a virtual house and a virtual car, air conditioner and so on...

Things are going so out of hand at times, that when I return to complete sanity and introspect, I wonder where this is taking us - it's absolutely crazy to have an online job, online money, online wife, husband and kids, everything online. No power would kill several. So many are addicted to the internet for the wrong things. I use the internet a lot, but not for such junk purposes. Chatting I do with close friends, with whom I can talk sense, or blabber my heart away. But the internet needs to be seen as a vast resource set, you can get whatever reference material you want for free. Songs and videos etc. complete entertainment. But not to such an extent that you forget how it is to be walking on the sand barefoot in the sun... Balanced handling is important claims Swami

1 comment:

Kavya said...

A line of thought, I agree with. The 'virtual' world was created in the first place, not so that it could fight against the 'real' world, but so that it could 'aid' the real world. Every new invention is akin to the invention of a knife. It's sheer foolishness to get obsessed with the tool and go around stabbing people. However, using it for saner purposes like slicing vegetables would be 'intelligent'.

P.S : Your limericks are brilliant :)