Communication these days is limited to 140 and 160 characters. I’m obviously talking about Twitter and SMS respectively. Earlier I thought that maybe our grasping levels had dipped due to which we needed to resort to just an average of 150 characters but I have to do some re-thinking now. I follow Barkha Dutt and Rajeev Masand on Twitter among other public figures (and obviously my friends too!) To be honest, I started following them to make up for the news I may have missed reading in the newspaper. Now they are just a part of my small ‘tweet’ing world! Barkha Dutt tweets all the time and it helps because even in just 140 characters that woman makes me think. (And I’m obviously doing my thinking at a rate of One thousand words in 2 minutes!) The other day she ‘tweet’ed about Mr. Kapil Sibal’s proposal of making 3 languages compulsory for students at school level. And it sparked of a debate among us twitterers. I realised that come what may, limiting communication to 140 characters would not stop a thought process. It’s just that we have lost an appetite for detail while reading. There is too much to absorb in today’s world anyway.
This got me thinking about silence. We do tweet and SMS at a rapid pace (follow Mr. Shashi Tharoor and you will know what compulsive tweeting can be) and we do have a thought process that churns out at an even faster rate but what about a moment of silence? Then I concluded that there is silence. A whole lot of it but it’s all ‘Uncomfortable Silence’. Too much is left unsaid for the fear of ruffling ‘so-assumed’ calm feathers. This is what adults suffer from. It’s a disease-Uncomfortable Silence. We do not grow up to be wiser. We grow up to be egotists and dense. We grow up to twist ourselves and get lost in the world which is made of more people like us. We grow up to scream on the inside and fight tears on the outside. We do not grow up to create. We grow up to demolish. We grow up to be uncomfortable each day and we succeed. We do.
There are things that made me come to this conclusion of an Uncomfortable Silence: I read a poem. I read a comment. I saw a man being taken to task for no fault of his own. I saw a person who did not say anything and left a void that was uncomfortable. I saw an entire society scheming and bitching for water. I saw a girl who was unable to cry and unable to escape. I saw a mother who did not have the motherly love. I saw rebellion. I saw indifference. I’ve seen all this at different instances of time over just 4 months now and I wonder what lies beneath that picture that I see. I’m sure of one thing that there is more than meets the eye. I know for a fact that since we have no eye for detail we tend to bury the reality within us and we tend to be all that we think we should be.
Somehow even I have lost the power to grasp more that I could at one point of time. I’m impassive to situations and I rarely get ruffled these days. It takes quite a lot to provoke me nowadays (which is a big feat I must say!) I’m limiting myself to 140 characters and as a passive observer I see that most of us are too. The energy is lost and the vibrancy is gone. I don’t think it’s much of a price to pay for maturity and for growing up! Or is it?