Mindless consumption-tide against time!

Karanvir Gupta
Consumption in itself is self-defining. We are busy doing it since ages. The first word that would come to your mind while thinking of consumption would be food, the next immediate might be drinks and to some it would be air, one thing which we consume incessantly and unconsciously. But consumption is not confined to mere intake of food and water, we are consuming literature, art, culture, values, stories and legacies of our ancestors since times immemorial. And the consumption of today is taking altogether a new devious form which has already engulfed the man and it will not be late before it would hog the mankind too.
Amazed? Yeah, you should be! Have you wondered how much metric tons of artificially conditioned air you inhale? How much time hours of advertisements of endless list of commercials you are consuming? How much amount of precious time you spend on social media? How much neurons you destroy unnecessarily while whatsapping to people who are physically involved somewhere else. The first question that would erupt after reading all these questions would be how is it a mindless consumption?
Well, I do not want to sound anachronistic but would like to bring to notice of your blinded eyes that how this consumption is mindless and equally devastating. The commercials that are aired on the television brainwash our original choices and taste and eventually kill our creativity of deciphering and innovating new things. Our brains become restrictedby the fact that this is all that can be created and made for consumption. Seldom the thought goes into the process that why we are consuming it.
While we are on social media or chatting with a friend through whatsapp or for that matter any other messenger, we are mindlessly consumed by a conversation with a person who is not with us in any dimension of space. And it is deemed mindless because we are not mindful of the people who have taken time out to be with us at that moment of time.
We have gone totally mindless about what are we consuming and more importantly why we are consuming. And consequentially what impact all such consumption will have in the long run. When you see around, there are four cars for four people in a house, how is it justified. Parents are buying ipads, providing their 4-5 year old kids with iphones and tablets. Only if they knew it neither enhances their audacious display of wealth nor their kids’ smartness. It makes the kids all the more aloof and isolated and anti-social in nature.
From our attires to accessories, from television to tablets/phablets, from postcards to umpteen social networking sites; we are enslaved by things which we really don’t need. And even if we need, we seem to have forgotten how much would be sufficient for us. Never gets enough, nay? We are constantly on the path of consumption-mindless consumption. Our splurge with so many things at a time makes us so unconscious about anything that we consume or are consuming that even a nibble of food that goes inside is unnoticed.
We are constantly thinking while we are driving forgetting to feel the adrenaline rush and enjoy the traffic outside, we are watching television but our attention remains hooked to the last advert we saw, for the sake, we are talking to people sitting with us but in reality our eyeballs are hooked to the number of likes and comments our new dp has managed to garner. We are studying but our mind is doing the rounds of that latest crush we had or the next outing we are planning, we are partying but our attention is to what others are wearing. We are doing so many things but in reality we are not absorbing the fun and happiness of either of the acts. All what we are doing is MINDLESSLY ABSORBING things and spending life. We are not living it. Alas!
Are we at home or outside, the ACs stay on; we need it or not, water is still running; we are moving or at signal, the fuel keeps igniting; we need houses or not, trees being cut; We have entered the vicious circle of mindless consumption where we have not taken a pause to gauge if what is the return on investment and what impact all this consumption will have on us as a generation in the long run. We are consuming things actively and passively; internally as well externally; materialistic and spiritually; giving and receiving constantly but unfortunately enough sans any realization. We have entered a zone of weird numbness and are stoned to the vagaries of so called modern world. Caveat Emptor: I am not against the use of technology or against the development of society or nation as a whole. All I insist is on prudence, a self-check on use of resources and mindful consumption of facilities, wealth and technology. To live life freely and not bound by the confinements of million thoughts but to derive pleasure from even a single act you do.This will go long in our favour and for future generations to come.
Stay mindful, Stay Raw, Keep Consuming and Live Life!!
(The writer is a student at Indian Institute of Management Shillong)