Social media and the psychology of loneliness

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SamBee
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Social media and the psychology of loneliness

Post by SamBee » 21 Aug 2018, 15:26

DASH1730 "An Area Authority...[was] asked...who...would go to the Telestial kingdom. His answer: "murderers, adulterers and a lot of surprised Mormons!"'
1ST PRES 1978 "[LDS] believe...there is truth in many religions and philosophies...good and great religious leaders... have raised the spiritual, moral, and ethical awareness of their people. When we speak of The [LDS] as the only true church...it is...authorized to administer the ordinances...by Jesus Christ... we do not mean... it is the only teacher of truth."

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SilentDawning
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Re: Social media and the psychology of loneliness

Post by SilentDawning » 22 Aug 2018, 05:57

Sam -- very interested -- but do you care to share a few key points from the video, and well has how long it is?
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- SD

"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."

A man asked Jesus "do all roads lead to you?" Jesus responds,”most roads don’t lead anywhere, but I will travel any road to find you.” Adapted from The Shack, William Young

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SamBee
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Re: Social media and the psychology of loneliness

Post by SamBee » 22 Aug 2018, 08:35

SilentDawning wrote:
22 Aug 2018, 05:57
Sam -- very interested -- but do you care to share a few key points from the video, and well has how long it is?
Slightly under nine minutes long, will summarise later.
DASH1730 "An Area Authority...[was] asked...who...would go to the Telestial kingdom. His answer: "murderers, adulterers and a lot of surprised Mormons!"'
1ST PRES 1978 "[LDS] believe...there is truth in many religions and philosophies...good and great religious leaders... have raised the spiritual, moral, and ethical awareness of their people. When we speak of The [LDS] as the only true church...it is...authorized to administer the ordinances...by Jesus Christ... we do not mean... it is the only teacher of truth."

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Heber13
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Re: Social media and the psychology of loneliness

Post by Heber13 » 22 Aug 2018, 15:44

The video starts:
"All man's history is an endeavor to shatter his loneliness."-Norman Cousins

In today's world with all the technologies built to connect us, loneliness, one would think, would be easily shattered.

But the more we get drawn into the virtual world of social media, the worse we tend to feel.

To account for this, it is suggested that the medium is the problem...we have become over-reliant on conencting through our devices at the expense of more traditional ways of social interaction.

But while there is likely some truth to this assertion, in this video we are going to put forth the argument that it is an inner emptiness or the lack of a well defined and effectual sense of self that is the root cause of the loneliness experienced by so many in our day.
It goes on to talk about the spectrum of the strong or weak sense of self to which people vary on goals and self-image, active or passive personalities.

Other factors contributing to lack of sense of self:
1. Social structures of the day have fallen tot he wayside...like the fall of Christianity;
2. The Growth of the state, reducing the smaller communities, and the degradation of family unit which have been a big force on development of sense of self;
3. Unfavorable economic conditions, and the death of the "American Dream" that don't give a vision of the future, leaving people hollow, anxiety causing us to have our thoughts turn inward, experiencing the painful anxiety in times of solitude.

So we use coping mechanisms to avoid a psychotic break, and connecting online to pretend to be something we are not.

I think they are making the point that part of life is to find ourselves so we don't feel lonely, and cast off loneliness by having purpose. But technology gives us a false connection that doesn't help us find ourselves, and it doesn't allow us to go into our aloneness to go on the journey as previously people did without the technology to give them an out.

So, perhaps...as I understood the video...technology is not the "cause" of the increased loneliness in our society, but it may be a catalyst by putting "a band aid on a gun shot wound." It is keeping us from a journey we should be going on to truly take care of the problem of loneliness.

I like the Joseph Campbell quote (only partially quoted in the video...this is a longer quote...because I like it :) ):
The hero's journey always begins with the call. One way or another a guide must come to say, "Look, you're in Sleepy Land. Wake. Come on a trip. There is a whole aspect of your consciousness, your being, that's not being touched. So you're at home here? Well, there's not enough of you there." And so it starts.

The call is to leave a certain social situation, move into your own loneliness and find the jewel, the center that's impossible to find when you're socially engaged. You are thrown off center, and when you feel off-center, it's time to go. This is the departure when the hero feels something has been lost and goes to find it. You are to cross the threshold into a new life. It's a dangerous adventure, because you are moving out of the sphere of the knowledge of you and your community.

The first step, detachment or withdrawal, consists in a radical transfer of emphasis from the external to the internal world, macro- to microcosm, a retreat from the desperations of the waste land to the peace of the everlasting realm that is within. It is the realm that we enter in sleep. We carry it within ourselves forever. All the ogres and secret helpers of our nursery are there, all the magic of childhood. And more important, all the life-potentialities that we never managed to bring into adult realization, those other portions of yourself, are there; for such golden seeds do not die. When one thinks of some reason for not going or has fear and remains in society because it's safe, the results are radically different from what happens when one follows the call.

If you refuse to go, then you are someone else's servant. When this refusal of the call happens, there is a kind of drying up, a sense of life lost. Everything in you knows that a required adventure has been refused. Anxieties build up. What you have refused to experience in a positive way, you will experience in a negative way.

If what you are following, however, is your own true adventure, if it is something appropriate to your deep spiritual need or readiness, then magical guides will appear to help you. If you say, "Everyone's going on this trip this year, and I'm going too," then no guides will appear. Your adventure has to be coming right out of your own interior. If you are ready for it, then doors will open where there were no doors before, and where there would not be doors for anyone else. And you must have the courage. When you cross the threshold, you are passing into the dark forest, taking a plunge into the sea, embarking upon the night sea journey. It involves passing through classing rocks, narrow gates, or the like, which represent yes and no, the pairs of opposites. There will be a moment when the walls of the world seem to open for a second, and you get an insight through . . . What this represents psychologically is the trip from the realm of consciousness, rational intentions into the zone of those other energies of the body that are moving from another center; the center with which you are trying to get in touch.

As you now go towards the center, there will come more aids, as well as more difficult trials. You have to give up more and more of what you're hanging on to. The final thing is a total giving up, a yielding all the way. This is a place directly opposite your life experiences and all that you've been taught.

Psychologically, it's a shift into the unconsciousness; otherwise, it's a move into a field of action of which you know nothing . . . The deeper you go, and the closer you get to the final realization, the heavier the resistance. You are coming down to those areas that are the ones that are repressed, and it's that repression system that you have to pass through. And there, of course, is where magical aid is most required. The hero may here discover for the first time that there is everywhere a benign power supporting him in his superhuman passage. You come then to the final experience of discovering and making your own that which was lacking in the place from which you departed.
Thanks for sharing this Sambee....gives me much to ponder. I would like to retreat to the wood...unplugged...and consider my own journey.


My overall take-away is....loneliness isn't a new problem to humankind. It may be accentuated by technologies and the changing environment of our world today...but it has always been there and there is always the journey we are to go on if we choose to. There just seems to be fewer supporting forces and fewer barriers to avoiding the journey.
Luke: "Why didn't you tell me? You told me Vader betrayed and murdered my father."
Obi-Wan: "Your father... was seduced by the dark side of the Force. He ceased to be Anakin Skywalker and became Darth Vader. When that happened, the good man who was your father was destroyed. So what I told you was true... from a certain point of view."
Luke: "A certain point of view?"
Obi-Wan: "Luke, you're going to find that many of the truths we cling to...depend greatly on our point of view."

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SamBee
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Re: Social media and the psychology of loneliness

Post by SamBee » 23 Aug 2018, 07:42

A better summary than I could have done.

I have spoken often to people about how social media helps make them miserable. I do use it, but one has to avoid falling into traps like number crunching or envy.
DASH1730 "An Area Authority...[was] asked...who...would go to the Telestial kingdom. His answer: "murderers, adulterers and a lot of surprised Mormons!"'
1ST PRES 1978 "[LDS] believe...there is truth in many religions and philosophies...good and great religious leaders... have raised the spiritual, moral, and ethical awareness of their people. When we speak of The [LDS] as the only true church...it is...authorized to administer the ordinances...by Jesus Christ... we do not mean... it is the only teacher of truth."

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Heber13
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Re: Social media and the psychology of loneliness

Post by Heber13 » 23 Aug 2018, 09:22

Like most things...it must have a balance and avoid extremes. Connecting with others can be easier..and that is good...but too much is not good.

I think most of us follow the path of least effort required...so...it is easy to let things become unhealthy for us when it is easier to log in and escape our problems than to go out in the world and go on the hero's journey to fight the dangerous fights.
Luke: "Why didn't you tell me? You told me Vader betrayed and murdered my father."
Obi-Wan: "Your father... was seduced by the dark side of the Force. He ceased to be Anakin Skywalker and became Darth Vader. When that happened, the good man who was your father was destroyed. So what I told you was true... from a certain point of view."
Luke: "A certain point of view?"
Obi-Wan: "Luke, you're going to find that many of the truths we cling to...depend greatly on our point of view."

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On Own Now
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Re: Social media and the psychology of loneliness

Post by On Own Now » 24 Aug 2018, 06:07

It is a fascinating presentation. Worth a few minutes, for sure. Thanks for posting it SamBee.

I myself believe that our so-called connected lives provide plenty of counter-productive pressure against our own characteristic nature. According to evolution, our ancestors go all the way back to the first organism on earth (let's call it AdamEve), but humans first came into being around 2 million years ago. If you go back to the time of Jesus, and then you go back a thousand more of those same time-spans, you will roughly arrive at our distinctive origins. What really separated humans from our animal cousins was our sociality. Or, as Stephen Hawking put it:
For millions of years, mankind lived just like the animals. Then something happened which unleashed the power of our imagination. We learned to talk and we learned to listen.
Social interaction and cooperation is what makes us wonderful. Take these away and replace them with an artificial version of the same, and we attain artificial interaction and artificial cooperation.
"Let us therefore no longer pass judgment on one another, but resolve instead never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of another." --Romans 14:13

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