The Virtual Addiction.

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Adicción a internet

Does the internet control your life? Does it have a command over every little action, every little reaction of yours? Does the absence of a net connection drive you nuts? Well then, yes. You’re probably addicted to it. The good news it, it won’t really kill you slowly but then a lightening strike may mess up all your gadgets and you may have to stay without the internet for almost forty eight hours. That’s the bad news. This process of detox is just as painful as it is for any other addiction.

Every part of your daily schedule is so complexly entangled with the internet that it’s nearly impossible to sever all its ties. Let’s face it, the elders who warn us against the dangers of the internet are not really acquainted with the benefits either. The internet is like the universe. It’s almost limitless. An omnipotent entity that bears the answers to all your questions. Sadly though, it is not omnipresent. As someone with a standard broadband connection and no mobile internet connection, this detox was excruciating for me.

There are bigger problems in the world- starvation, poverty and disease. In the face of those hardships, moaning over a problem like this may seem extremely insensitive and superficial but after a while I stopped caring about that. Life without Facebook and the links on our wall that redirect us to weird pages, is a strange life.

I remember, for quite some time, the download speed of utorrent was the determining factor of how happy I was going to be for the rest of the day. I usually started the download at 2 am and switched it off at 8 am. The days I woke up to “40% download complete” were the good days. People avoided talking to me on the “2% download complete” days in the fear of being screamed upon. That is a sign of addiction. I may have been living in denial for long, but it’s time to own up to my mistakes.

After the little green light of my modem died, a strange fear gripped at my heart. I did not know when it would light up again or whether it was going to light up again at all. Though I had numerous ideas for my articles, I realized that my knowledge was totally dependent on the internet. I see no point in lying about it now. How often do we open Google in a new tab and hastily check out the location of a place that someone had mentioned to us in a facebook chat, in order to avoid sounding stupid? We may have all the information we need, but Google is one sure shot way to check if we are right.

At night I often found myself trying to figure out what the world’s ugliest fish was or what was the proper way to make a high-rise, while staring into a brightly lit screen which cast a ghostly shadow over my face in the otherwise dark room. We have a ton of useless information in our heads because of this all-knowing platform of wisdom. Many may argue that going to the library has similar benefits but when we think about it, the internet is a lot faster and a lot more entertaining. The information may be useless but it is also varied. They help us to start numerous pointless conversations and worry about a hundred things that would never bother us.

Is being addicted to the internet bad? Well, sitting in a chair throughout the day is not healthy in any way, nor is continuously staring into a lit screen. But those reasons are not enough to dissuade any addict to leave his seat in front of the computer. I’ll give a better reason to stop- the withdrawal symptoms are scary. I am not exaggerating because I have a first hand experience in this. Your whole life is on that computer screen, when you look away- you’ll see nothing. There’s no point in pretending that the real world does not exist, because it does and sometimes Mother Nature sends a lightening bolt that forces us to re-think our ways of living.

Yes, the internet is one of the best things that has happened to mankind yet. Fanfictions, youtube videos, random sites with such content that makes you question why people have so much free time on their hands, all social networking sites- they’ll live on even after you take a walk in the rain. But if you stop acknowledging the beauty of reality in favor of the charms of the online world, you will find it very difficult to survive for even an hour when the lights go off.

This is a fellow addict speaking to you. If you feel absolutely hopeless and helpless without the little green light of your modem , know that it’s not really as horrible as it seems. The lack of an internet connection does not make you any less intelligent or unsocial. Also, comparing this to larger problems decreases the seriousness of those larger problems so I won’t do it- but neither will I take this lightly.

I know you’re reading this now over the internet but after you finish, listen to the advices of the very talented writers who write about ways to improve your health through yoga, workouts and other methods, and follow them. The internet may be a beautiful place but it does not really contribute in making a person more beautiful.

Also, the rain outside makes your surroundings way more enchanting that the pictures of it that you see on your Facebook wall.