Subcutaneous power for humanity 5 Loneliness, Virtual and real friends

Happiness isn’t the easiest thing to find, but one place you’re guaranteed to find it is in a friend’s smile. Friendship attributes to happiness, and I would even dare to go further: “without friendship no happiness”.

Lack of friends can be felt deep. Today we can see that many young people are suffering because they start feeling that virtual friends are not the real friends and that we as human beings need real people around us who can become real friends.

The friends can be made at school, at work, or in free time. Friendships depend also on our social situation. Depending on our social status we are going to be in contact with certain people and are going to foster certain ideas. Living in this world we are also very much dependant on what goes on in this world and how those in power decide things for us.

Robert Graham writes:

All of us, be it workers and the unemployed people, students and pupils, employees and marginal elements, have one common unifying element – to protest against any power of a man over another man, state, capitalism and officially spread bourgeois “culture”. A desire not to be a willful nut in the mechanism of the System – to collectively resist it, to demand free self-realization. {Russian Anarchism Today}

To have good friends and friendships which can stay for a long time each-others freedom is very important. By accepting that the other may think differently a grater opening is made in the gate to receive and to keep friends.

For those living in industrialised or economically booming countries many friendships can be under pressure by the current system of domination which is tightly interlaced with a repressive state apparatus, industrial capitalist economical structure and authoritarian and hierarchic relations between people.

We see that every state is an instrument of oppression and exploitation of the working majority for the benefit of the privileged minority. Power of state and capital is suppression of personality and creativity of each and everyone. This is why for us libertarian (free, stateless, self-governed) communism, a society without domination, is the necessary structure of society. The closest aim of Autonomous Action is to create a tradition and basis for a new humanist culture, social self-organization and radical resistance against militarism, capitalism, sexism and fascism. {Russian Anarchism Today}

In Belgium, Holland, France and Great-Britain we can see that the distance between the high society, the rich and the poor becomes increasingly great. The middle-class is everywhere becoming poorer.

For those who had dreams it has become more difficult to out them, because it could mean loosing friends from one or the other side. Their ideals and organizational principles may be wide enough not to make them a sect or cult, but the society likes to put everywhere a ticket or tag and put everyone in boxes. Not able to label them under a general commonly accepted groups they quickly are referred to as a faction or cult.

Those who do not like to continue to see how the present human society is lead to an ecological and cultural catastrophe and possibly to war are looked at with a cockeye. Some people consider it as dangerous to undertake friendships with such people who love the earth more than the economical destruction.

Anticapitalism

Human race, undivided in its natural state, has become divided between masters and powerless exploited majority. We stand for liquidation of the class society, wage work, humiliation and exploitation of human by another and imperialism, and for elimination of power of money and products. Against the dependence of human from the nature of “market relations”. Products should not govern people, in contrary people should use products sensibly and cautiously. Society should get over the catastrophical logic of the bourgeois production. Against growing power of transnational corporations and international structures of the capital. {Russian Anarchism Today}

Escaping the economic world

Having to face every day the need to bring money in the till, able to survive in this economical market, many people go onto the internet playing all sorts of games, creating their own worlds of ‘farmers’, ‘happy family’ and looking to join as many groups, trying to find as many ‘friends’ on social media.

On that net they like giving short remarks on small things and sometimes on bigger issues. For lots of people fascism, racism and nationalism are means of bourgeoisie and bureaucracy to provoke people against each other, and to divide them to different races and nations, to hide mastership, and as such going into discussion deeper is best to be avoided.

On the net they are not bounded to any organisation and can organise their own little world.

Having more than 1 million people more in this world since I started this series on the human person feeling in his society, many have been born in poverty and many died in loneliness. Lots of people are feeling so lonely they even try to get away for good of that feeling by taking their life, escaping this world, where human relations have become less important than economical relations.

How are you feeling in the crowd

How are you feeling today? Do you feel to be in a crowd of people? Do you feel at ease with the people around you?

In my article Lonely in the crowd I started to give a voice to my impression of how people might feel today in our industrialised environment. How many people do feel they are in the right place and can say they are happy in their surroundings? How many do manage to make connections with others that can grow into good friendships which will last for a long time?

I wrote:

With the millions living around us we are like a very tiny ant or even more like a microbe. But those microbes which we know are often more in symbiosis or unity than those human beings. {Lonely in the crowd}

Making connections

notworkingWe may find lots of people around us but have no connection with them at all. Nothing seems to connect us with them. Lots of people are starting to feel this as something which tries to press them in a little corner or in to the darkness of the unknown. By creating their own world on the internet they feel they can escape such pressure and feel happy in their own virtual world.

They forget that they shall not be able to live by those virtual or imaginary friends and virtual situation which bring them even further away from the reality, making them even more stranger when they come out of doors.

More and more voices can be heard of people who may have lots of connections on internet but still feel very lonely. console

Easy life

https://i0.wp.com/upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/ae/Flotilla_-_combat_%28Blendo_Games%29.jpg/800px-Flotilla_-_combat_%28Blendo_Games%29.jpg

Screenshot of the combat video game flotilla (2010) by Blendo Games

In the virtual world everything can be made like people want or would love to see their world to be. There on the pc there is no question of the difficulty or easiness of life. All sorts of combats can be done without getting hurt. There they do not have to think that life is not always easy. They do know that much of the time life is difficult. They even find that today their life has become ‘damned, too difficult’.

FarmVille logo.pngFor some years now, many have grown up making farms, towns in a would like to be or fantasy world of “Farmville“, “Happy Farm“, “Farm Town“, Harvest Moon series a.o. simulation social network games. In their self made world they did not have to worry about not being able to construct what they wanted or making and keeping friends. They created their own look-alike and friends how they wanted them to see.

No religion to hold onto

Many of the youngsters today have also no religion any more to pull them up and to bring some hopeful thoughts to their mind.

For those who believe in God many times it is easier to handle failure and disappointment than it is great success.

When we find ourselves insolvent or impoverished, it is easy to recognize our own needs, and the necessity for God to intervene on our behalf. Many who enjoy great success and wealth are persuaded that they no longer need God’s help, and they believe that they alone are responsible for their own good fortune.

remarks Darrell Creswell in his article “Handling Failure and Success – Vessels of God – Inspirational Bible Verses“.

Many young people have become afraid of the real man and do not like to go in a real confrontation with men or women form the outside world. It is easier to stay between the four walls of the known surroundings of the parents house instead of going into confrontation with others outside, having no switch to turn of in case it becomes to hot or to annoying.

Many do not know it is not so much man they should fear, but more the Divine Maker of everything, which most of them do not know or do not want to know about.

Making it to the top

Today lots of people do find the urge bigger to reach the top of the ladder then to have an amicable social life. Normally people would be interested to engage in relations that are rewarding in both tangible and intangible ways.  Getting into higher positions is top priority number one, by most of the young adolescents. Those in the mid thirties do not mind to go over corpses to reach their goal. Their personal gain has become more important than the gain for the firm or for the society. Because of that distorted attitude many businesses are not working properly any more and or not advancing any more like they could and should. They perhaps may get nice figures on the market and see their gains in percentage going higher, but the trust by their employees and by their customers is diminishing.

The distance between employee, the working staff and the CEO’s may have become a totally different relationship than 50 years ago, but it for sure did not improve.
The respect between the different parties is now totally gone in many businesses.

Capitalism II in-game.

Capitalism II in-game. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Those who have reached the top seem to forget very fast where they stood when they were at the beginning of their career and who their friends were. Soon they exchange their friends for others, hoping to save their face. Often they ‘change themselves’ then for their previous friends. Several easily get embarrassed about their past and do not want to remember or talk about it. Embarrassment lay like a cloak over their shoulders.
Would you call that “friends” when they shame themselves for each other?

At the same time when they put away the friends they had in their real life they are happy to have such friends that they never see, never talk too, possibly never meet, but happy to email or chat too only, and who would not get to know the ‘real you’, because the decision what the other comes to know is all in the hands of the person behind the screen.

Virtual versus real friends

"Ung publik tar in sol och musik", K...

“Ung publik tar in sol och musik”, Kungsträdgården, Stockholm, Sweden (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A 2013 survey said people are happier and laugh 50% more when talking to a friend face-to-face. But by the people under 35 lots of them are more interested in virtual than real friends. According to the survey many people do have hundreds of — some even have 1,000-plus — friends on social networking sites, but only a handful of ‘real’ ones.

You may wonder how it comes that people today are more interested in those they shall never meet in real life than to have friends which they can encounter any day not to say every day. Many overlook that they too could spend more precious time with real friends to hang out with, share personal details. It would be much better to spend quality time with them, yet, they keep chatting with their virtual friends on social networking sites almost on a daily basis, instead of nurturing real friendships.

Friends on social networking sites cannot be a substitute for real friends,

says psychologist Mansi Hasan, adding,

Social networking sites are the easiest way to keep in touch with those countless people, who we wouldn’t be able to keep in touch with due to our busy lives. However, the ’emotional touch’ cannot be easily replaced by internet chats, comments and posts.”

The internet offers a lot of advantages, giving opportunities with a.o. Web-based social networking services making it possible to connect people who share interests and activities across political, economic, and geographic borders. People with not much money can find the world at their feet and can do lots of research for free or at a low cost, also exchanging ideas with others far away.

It is no surprise that research does suggest that non-verbal and verbal cues both contribute towards creating a connection between two people. As human being we do need the interconnection with other human beings.  With the free and open-source software developers have created “a ‘gift culture’ in which participants can compete for prestige by giving time, energy, and creativity away. {Homesteading the Noosphere}
The real connection only clicks when we are able to experience that friendship in person, otherwise it’s like experiencing a vacation through a virtual tour. The network ties shall influence the development and maintenance of the real life people their relationships and when their is not an openness by partners we can see that the virtual networks can damage the real life relationship, whilst being “a married couple” also affects the nature of their social network ties.

No face-to-face talks on social networking sites

Face to Face With the Truth

Face to Face With the Truth (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Perhaps we can come closer to the moment that also young people are starting to recognise that those friends on the net let them still feel very lonely. I do hope more people are coming to the understanding that such virtual friends, on social networking sites, never can substitute for real friends.

No amount of virtual friendships will ever prepare us for direct interaction with others and they never shall be able to be there with us at the moments we need them urgently.

Clinical psychologist Johann Thomas who also agrees that friends cannot be a substitute for real friends, looks at the present phenomena:

“It is also possible that most people who are comfortable making friends virtually do so because it gives them an option of avoiding face-to-face (FTF) contact with others. They are worried about negative conclusions being drawn about them in a FTF meeting where they will not be able to hide their drawbacks (awkward mannerisms, speech deficits, language difficulty, etc.). Typing online also gives people time to respond, which is a luxury we don’t have in FTF communications. This lack of time also reveals our lack of wit and poise in FTF (which we do not want to be known),” {Virtual vs real friends}

he explains.

Face-to-face interactions are more satisfying

According to the study, people are happier and laugh 50% more when talking face-to-face with friends or via webcam than when using social networking sites. Thomas explains,

“The reason could be that human brain reads subliminal cues while interacting face-to-face, which go beyond the individual reading of gestures, facial expressions and words. This integration helps us to better understand what the others are saying or hiding.” {Virtual vs real friends}

Talking on phone/texting vs sharing a smile

The study also said that talking on the phone and texting does not make people feel as good as sharing a smile.

“One reason for this is that the majority of processing is done by our vision and we are heavily dependent on sight. Due to this, we have to rely on seeing the genuineness of others’ affect (outward expression of internal emotion),” {Virtual vs real friends}

says Thomas.

It may look ridiculous but sometimes we find youngsters texting each other while they are standing close to each other. (?) Why do they not talk with each other? Why do they loose time by letting their fingers go over the letters of their cellphone, instead of giving each other direct answers using their voice?

phone2Does their typing on their phone gives them the feeling of that friend they created in their virtual world or have they become too afraid to meet the real guy they are talking to?

Important and meaningful friendships

How many are still prepared to form important and meaningful friendships with intelligent, creative and interesting people from all over the world?

It is true we may find people like the retired psychotherapist/mental health director Cindy Knoke Barton LCSW who has found time to travel around and to place beautiful pictures on the net, by which she also comes in contact with people from all over the world. When she travels it may like some other bloggers she can meet with other blogger friends in every country she visit.

“How cool is this?” {Be Kind to Your Web-footed Friends!}

she writes.

I do agree with her that in our daily life with its many struggles we can receive encouragement, support and friendship from so many wonderful bloggers. She writes:

I would never have continued blogging, if it weren’t for the incredible supportive community I have become a part of here at wordpress. You rock! {Be Kind to Your Web-footed Friends!}

I am also convinced several bloggers really can get others inspired and give some extra new meaning in their life. In a way the internet has opened new doors and maybe it may also bring us more and other friends.
But let us never forget the importance of those friends we need most, the ones who are there in real life, close to us.

Easy way to stay in contact

People like Mrs Knoke Barton who got to live in regions where there are not directly so many neighbours around, can find an easier way to contact others.

As if all these “challenges” were not enough, there was a quite complete lack of neighbors, which of course, was one of the major reasons we moved out here. But it also meant there were no people in hollering distance of our holler i.e., we were on our own. We did have one set of neighbors, but they were more than a mile away. Still they were the only people around, and had moved in several months before we did, so they were more experienced with rural life here than we were. Their names were Kevin and Junko. Like everyone out here Kevin and Junko have a very protective dog. {Gone A-calling Holler Style Part III!}

In her writings we come to know how important any friendship is. Also in her pictures she knows to capture the friendship animals have and how there can be a moving friendship between human being and nature. If it is a friendship born between a city woman from Tokyo, and a city woman from San Diego, both of them, at sea in their rural environment, like many of us in our dreams or in real life.

Friends and solitude

Mitra writes.

He notices how so many of us have become so busy

looking down at our screens that we don’t know what we’re missing out around us.

Magnetised by the little screen or by the social networks on the pc, many have isolated themselves from the real world. They did not find luck and did not find real friends who could take away them feeling lonely.

I have 509 friends on Facebook, but I still feel lonely.

confesses Mitra, and continues:

I see what they do everyday yet I barely know them. In this Global Neighborhood, we share and post everything we see, hear and experience. We have somehow managed to convince ourselves of the illusion that updating everything we do will get us connected to everyone around us. But hey, life your head from your screens and look around you. You’re alone.

I too have fallen victim to this madness. I’ll end here, so shut down your screen and lock away your phone, tablet or laptop.

Loneliness and sorrow

Many sought to find friendship on the net but came to feel more lonely than they were before.

Amanda Coplin tells us,

“…sorrow came from these two feelings, the happines of company, the anxiety of interrupted solitude.”

Take heed and remember what

Shut down your screens and relish the finite number of days you have. For we only live once.

+

Preceding posts:

Friendship and Offer for the cause of democracy

Invasion of Normandy a day never to forget

Blood soaking the water at democracy’s beachhead

Subcutaneous power for humanity 1 1940-1960 Influenced by horrors of the century

Subcutaneous power for humanity 2 1950-2010

Subcutaneous power for humanity 3 Facing changing attitudes

Subcutaneous power for humanity 4 Not crossing borders of friendship

 In reply to:

Lonely in the crowd

++

Please do find additional reading:

  1. Misleading world, stress, technique, superficiality, past, future and positivism
  2. Economic crisis danger for the rise of political extremism
  3. Problems by losing the borders
  4. Gender connections
  5. Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #1 Up to 21st century
  6. Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #2 First two decennia of 21st century
  7. Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #3 Right to Human dignity
  8. Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #4 The Family pact
  9. Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #5 Housing
  10. Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #6 Transport factor of immobilising financial growth
  11. Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #7 Education
  12. Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #8 Work
  13. Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #9 Consumption
  14. Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #10 Health
  15. Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #11 Participation
  16. Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #12 Conclusion
  17. Anti-Crisis anger calling out
  18. Ability for a community to come back from a crisis
  19. 1985-2012 Poverty in Europe
  20. Bleak forecasts for children in the UK
  21. US poverty worse than previous recessions
  22. Nearly 50 million poor North Americans
  23. Capitalism downfall
  24. European Year for combating poverty spurred mobilisation and commitment
  25. Poverty and conservative role patterns
  26. Expanding opportunities for more American families
  27. Self inflicted misery #1 The root by man
  28. Exceptionalism and Restricting Laws
  29. Judeo-Christian values and liberty
  30. Stand Up
  31. Anti-Semitism ‘on the rise’ in Europe
  32. Violence against disabled children
  33. Looking to the East and the West for Truth
  34. All I want is peace!!!
  35. Don’t Envy the World
  36. Who Would You Rather Listen To?
  37. A New Perspective
  38. If we view the whole world through a lens that is bright
  39. A Single Seder, and Around the World
  40. To be chained by love for another one
  41. Religions and Mainliners
  42. Pope Francis says Catholics must become evangelisers
  43. Full text of Pope Francis’ Interview with ‘La Vanguardia’
  44. Green Claims in Europe
  45. Immigration consternation
  46. No man is free who is not master of himself
  47. Some one or something to fear #4 Families and Competition
  48. Some one or something to fear #7 Not afraid for Gods Name
  49. The Spirit of God imparts love,inspires hope, and gives liberty
  50. The Spirit of God brings love, hope and freedom
  51. God’s wisdom for the believer brings peace
  52. At first looking like a loss
  53. People of Faith for Obama video
  54. Self-development, self-control, meditation, beliefs and spirituality
  55. Philosophy hand in hand with spirituality
  56. Savouring pictorial entertainment
  57. Freely & fairly
  58. Overcoming Hurt Feelings
  59. You’re so used to
  60. Opportunity!
  61. So Lonely
  62. Lonely so lonely
  63. Alone in the cold and dark
  64. Depression Is and When
  65. “Unnoticed”
  66. A Cranky Old Man
  67. Loneliness (as seen by Tess Connor)
  68. Lonely Life

++

Also of interest:

  1. From Winterdarkness into light of Spring
  2. Gender roles and Multitasking parents
  3. If there is bitterness in the heart
  4. Truth never plays false roles of any kind, which is why people are so surprised when meeting it
  5. Guard well within yourself that treasure, kindness
  6. Aim High: Examples of Godly Characters to follow
  7. “In The Sanctuary of Outcasts,” Neil White.
  8. “The Orchardist,” by Amanda Coplin
  9. “The Snow Child,” by Eowyn Ivey
  10. On Gender Roles

+++

  • Lonely Together…so to speak (djadamson46.wordpress.com)
    when there’s an opportunity to get together, it’s great, and I didn’t want to miss that opportunity at Dambuster. I didn’t even see that much of the racing, but just being able to catch up with my pals after the race and find out how they’d got on, what went well, what was tough, how they felt they measured up on the day relative to where they thought they were in training terms, was a great bonding experience. When we’ve spent so long on our own logging the requisite miles, I find that one of the most enjoyable parts of our sport is just being able to share the experience with like-minded individuals, and there’s no better time to do this than in the aftermath of an adrenaline-fuelled race on a sunny day in south Lincolnshire.
  • Theories of Power: Part 1, Pluralism (neilmtokar.wordpress.com)
    anarchy is fundamentally a perpetual questioning of authority and power; it asks us to consider the legitimacy of all power. In fact, James C Scott begins his history of anarchism in upland Southeast Asia by pointing out that we have to study the state by also studying statelessness or anarchy
  • Is Anarchism a Political Ideology? (petrovaworld.wordpress.com)
    William Godwin is believed by many to be the ‘father of anarchism’. He first gave a clear statement of anarchist principles. Godwin is the one who asserted that ‘the most desirable condition of the human species is a state of society.” He was a defender of civil rights and the right of private judgement. Godwin was to big extent influenced by the French philosophers, and more specifically Rousseau who argued that man is inherently good but corrupted by institutions and the downfall of mankind was private property. A famous phrase Rousseau used was ‘Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains’.
  • Insider Reveals 21st Century Illuminati Agenda (henrymakow.com)
    Super-empire = an era of privatization where corporations rule the day.  He writes, “money will finally rid itself of everything that threatens it- including nation states, which it will progressively dismantle.” The market will become the world’s only recognized law. A system of power whose ‘structures remain elusive but whose goal is global.’
  • David Graeber’s Anarchist Thought: A Survey (c4ss.org)
    If we really want to understand the moral grounds of economic life and, by extension, human life, it seems to me that we must start… with the very small things: the everyday details of social existence, the way we treat our friends, enemies, and children—often with gestures so tiny (passing the salt, bumming a cigarette) that we ordinarily never stop to think about them at all. Anthropology has shown us just how different and numerous are the ways in which humans have been known to organize themselves. But it also reveals some remarkable commonalities….
  • Loneliness is killing us – we must start treating this disease | Philippa Perry (theguardian.com)
    That loneliness is a health issue would not have been a surprise to Mother Teresa who once said: “The biggest disease today is not leprosy or cancer or tuberculosis, but rather the feeling of being unwanted, uncared for and deserted by everybody.”But now doctors have quantified the effects of the loneliness disease, warning that lonely people are nearly twice as likely to die prematurely as those who do not suffer feelings of isolation. Being lonely it seems, is a lot more worrying for your health than obesity.
  • The Center for a Stateless Society and Freed Market Anti-Capitalism (c4ss.org)
    A monopoly on the use of force is undesirable, not only because it is force, but also because of its status as a monopoly. We are not morally discouraged or confused with the use of force in the pursuit of justice, in self defense, or even, I submit, in acts of extreme desperation – for aesthetic convenience think of a starving Jean Valjean stealing bread.Monopoly, on the other hand, is morally discouraging, and as it blocks our every attempt to “find a route around” our moral confusion grows until we either submit or explode.
  • Study: Facebook Users Who Share Too Much Information More Lonely, Depressed (atlanta.cbslocal.com)
    Over-sharing of personal information and increased general activity on Facebook often displays someone dealing with “loneliness” or possible depression away from their computer. A new study published by researchers at Charles Sturt University in New South Wales finds that more than 79 percent of users who describe…
  • Loneliness. The killer (myrehabjourney.wordpress.com)
    A simple search term such as “loneliness kills” is enough to have Google spewing out a plethora of interesting sites where you can read more about how this is considered to be right up there with obesity and alcoholism.I am grateful for everything in my life and I am not going to allow the loneliness to defeat me or get me going under. I am persistent to be positive and the law of attraction has taught me well.
  • Anarchism: What It Is and What It Isn’t (seesharppress.wordpress.com)
    some who call themselves “anarchists” don’t even know the meaning of the term. These people fall, in general, into two classes. The first, as the great Italian anarchist Luigi Fabbri pointed out nearly a century ago in Influencias burguesas sobre el anarquismo, consists of those who are attracted to the lies in the mass media. By and large, these people are simply looking for a glamorous label for selfish, antisocial behavior. The good news is that most of them eventually mature and abandon what they consider “anarchism.” The bad news is that while they’re around they tend to give anarchism a very bad name.
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About Marcus Ampe

Retired dancer, choreographer, choreologist Founder of the Dance impresario office and archive: Danscontact-Dansarchief plus the Association for Bible scholars, the Lifestyle magazines "Stepping Toes" and "From Guestwriters" and creator of the site "Messiah for all". - Gepensioneerd danser, choreograaf, choreoloog. Stichter van Danscontact-Dansarchief plus van de Vereniging voor Bijbelvorsers, de Lifestyle magazines "Stepping Toes" en "From Guestwriters" en maker van de site "Messiah for all".
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18 Responses to Subcutaneous power for humanity 5 Loneliness, Virtual and real friends

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  10. cindy knoke says:

    You are such an intelligent and kind person Marcus. I am priveleged to know you . Be well and bless you my friend.

    Like

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