My feelings is that there is nothing you can do but to endure it. What else can be done? No one can fight the massive technological beast.
Technology has already done its damage anyways. Cultures have already been whipped out, identities have been destroyed, belief undermined. Alienation has become a fact of life. There’s no changing that. And, more importantly, there’s no repairing it.
I consider the destruction and undermining of culture by technological society as, probably, the worst disaster in human history. Once a culture has been undermined there’s not a whole lot you can do. It’s gone. There’s no reviving it. It becomes a matter of living in what’s left. That’s the position many of us are in now.
I’ve often compared living in technological society to living in an area that has just been hit by some tornado, hurricane, or natural disaster. What’s weird, though, is that nothing seems to of happened. A ‘something’ must of happened though, as it completely disrupted everything, threw everything in pieces, and many of us end up trying to fit it all back together again. A lot of the modern world is like that to me, an endless piecing together of the broken pieces modernity creates, oftentimes without any clear idea as to what caused it. It’s endless and goes on and on. All my life I’ve seen culture, tradition, belief, identity, purpose, etc. broken down like it was nothing. The fact is that this stuff is needed and many people have been trying to put the pieces back together, without success.
The technological society has come to dominate. Technology, like some cancerous growth, has come to change and alter humanity. It’s as if it is trying to change the makeup of our humanity, mutating it into a new artificial being. In fact, I sometimes feel a new ‘man’ is being created in this society. I jokingly call this the ‘technological man’ or the ‘system man’.
It seems there are stages in the development of the ‘technological man’:
1- Pre-technological man. Being brought up without technology he usually sees no sense in a lot of it. He tends to look at the new things with an apprehension and uncertainty.
2- Transitional-technological man. They are as if caught in the middle and don’t know what to make of things. Because of this there’s often great contradiction with this group.
3- Technological man. They are brought up with it and know no other life. As a result, they tend to agree with it and seldom dispute things.
4- Post-technological man. This refers to a man that lives in technological society but has moved beyond it. Even though he lives in it he, as a person, is not living in it.
In the US, it appears the pre-technological man was the generation from the 1950’s and before. The transitional-technological man appears to be the generations from the 1960-80s’. The technological man is from the 1990’s on. The post-technological man, of course, can be from the 60’s on.
These stages seem to suggest that humanity had to be ‘converted’ to technological society, like some religion. It seems reminiscent of the conversion of pagans to Christianity. But, just as Christianity failed in it’s conversion of the world, I see no reason why technological society will not fail as well. One of the reasons for this is that technological society is intrusive. It does not stem from the culture or people. It is something ‘from without’ that is placed upon people. Just like Christianity, people must be ‘converted’ to take it to heart. Despite how it may look, many people are not ‘converted’ to technology or science. Most people just go along with things, the path of least resistance. It is there, placed before them, so they go along with it. I’ve always felt that if the technological society fell you’d see many people abandon it very easily.
The people who believe in the scientific and technological society have this mistaken belief that it is this great ‘truth’ in life. The fact is that, in the real human world, science and technology are like alien points of view, that are only relevant to the professors and scholars who think enough about these things to make them relevant. Mathematical formulas, chemical equations, the makeup of cellular structure, etc. have no place in the real active human world. Despite what scientists and technological people think, people do not take it to heart.
This is one of the reasons why technological society will fail in the end. It’s also why people will never be happy with it. There will always be a ‘resistance front’, people who are never happy with things. These are people who feel something ‘isn’t right’ or are always somehow dissatisfied. Many will not know why they feel that way. Many will make a connection but will find they are powerless. Others will just ignore it and ‘go with the flow’. It seems to me that technological society will always create a sense of ‘dissatisfaction’ in it, wherever you go. It’s a society that pretends to be human, and sometimes appears so, but is not. Some of us will sense this inconsistency. It’s a society that has been placed upon us, created by people in the classroom and laboratories who think in abstract detached ways about life. In some ways, we’ve become their subjects, we’ve become victims of their power.
But some of us refuse to accept this power. The post-technological man is the man who holds onto a humanity in life, who keeps his ‘humaness’ as more precious than following the crowd and society. For this effort he will pay for it, often with loneliness and, perhaps, rejection and alienation. But there are many of us out there who refute the power of the technological beast. It’s done in many ways and on many levels. On the lowest level, it seems, is a general contempt about things it seems, a great distrust about many things, be they government, business, or what have you. For others it can be more involved. Perhaps, like me, many are inspired to ask ‘why?’ and wonder what we can do about it.
It also seems that the post-technological man is a man, that is, it is a male characteristic. It seems to me that many females thrive in this ultra-organized technological society. But it is my belief that this is basically eating away and destroying the male. Some of us can feel it and revolt against it.
As I always say: “Modern society isn’t fit for human beings.”
(I wrote this in about 2009)