Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Are we happier?

Did you ever ask yourslef if you enjoyed the era you live in? I mean did you ever wish you were born 500 years ago or 2000 years ago?
Actually I asked myself this question (I guess I was bored at the time) and I couldn't answer. are we lucky to live this particular period of time?

In the last 150 years, technology changed drastically humans life. Technology used to evolve relativley slowly prior to the 18th century. But in the last 150 years, we invented so many things in so many fields, from engines to airplanes to medecines and the industry itself.
Now with eclectronics and computers and the money poured in research, our way of life is changing constantly.
Do you think in 1500s a father would tell his son the famous "in our time, it was tough,we had to work harder"?, I bet not. I am sure that this kind of remarks started in the last century and I find myself starting telling my son "Stop complaining about the HD size of your ipod, at my time we had big bulky cassette players and a cassete is 120 mn max". Of course he smiles at me when I say that, the same way I smiled at my father when he did the same kind of remarks.
So the question is are we happier than our ancestors because we have cars,planes,computers,internet....etc? What about our values? Did the technnology made us better persons?
I really don't know


Tarek said...

Who are "we" Samsoum?

you're talking about 10% of the world population!

This world lives in poverty. There are people who can hardly find water to drink, let alone technology to use. In 150 years, we'll have even more of these!

So what we need to do in to make sure that in 150 years a father would not look at his son and say: "see the empty space here on the map? there were people living in that area, called Africans"

Napo said...

I look at it differently. it's not a matter of happines, rather convenience. Yes life is more convenient with technological advances, yet more stressful, and risker, given the fact that technology is a double edged sword.

I think the way we make use of technology is what makes us better or worse.

@tarek, if you continue on this track, i shall call you father theresa soon :-)))

samsoum said...

Tarek, I don't think that only 10% are impacted by the inventions of the last 150 years, but I agree with you that not all of us are benefiting from it in the same way.

My point is that for thousands or million of years humanity did never have so many changing life inventions in so short time as in the last 150 years and we happen to live this era, so I was wondering if we should consider ourseleves lucky since as Napo mentionned it is a double edged sword indeed.

A.L.G.Y said...

I agree with Napo. We are now very dependent on all those things we did not even think about, lets say a few years ago...

For instance the internet and cellular phones have created new way of lives but also new addictions ; so we are not happier, we might even be less free ??

Of course, I am talking about my own addictions !

Tunimania said...

The present is here, the question is: "what about the future ?".
I don't know...

Anonymous said...

That famous 10 % has not really changed ever since the begining , humans always lived on a different pace and the fact that we do see each other's misery live on TV either in NY ,Ethiopia ,Indonesia ,lebanon or Gaza should bring us closer together not further apart .One thing to remember is that all those suffering are humans and none really is worth more than any other ,be it a citizen of NY or Mogadisho.

Sam said...

I can't imagine myself living without a computer or a cellphone, that's a fact I can't deny, but there's something I'm sure of, is that values never change, we have values that our parents gave and showed us, our parents took the same values from their parents that took them from their parents... a person is defined by what he/she uses his/her values, technology defines only our way of life

Luna said...

i don't know if we are happier or not than the others...
we were born with these technologies and we can't see our lives without them right...but it doesn't make us happier than all those generations that lived before us.

Tarek says something true actually that we tend to forget because we only think of oursleves and not of the poor people...they don't know what technology mean...they can tell you if they are happy the way they are...i'm pretty sure they don't give a damn to know if they are happier than the others or not.