Delving into the Intangibles

   A sidelong glance  

Every day, a flood of information pours from television, newspapers, weekly & monthly magazines, and the Internet, et cetera––and we are swamped. It is not clear what is true and what is not. It is hard to tell how much truth resides in any of the stream of reports. Needless to say, we must keep in mind that the tangible “information machine” called “the mass media” has tremendous intangible power.

A friend once gave me this piece of advice: “You’re too naïve, always ready to accept a thing as true. Sometimes give what you read or hear a sidelong glance and try to read between the lines.”

On reaching a certain age, you tend to have acquired a biased view about most things, depending on your education or the social environment that influenced you. I myself might be the type of person who thinks solely along the lines of her own non-standard perspective. Which is not good.

When you feel like criticizing something or someone, please ask yourself whether you are truly entitled to do so and properly equipped to judge objectively. Everyday, I find myself having to reflect on my reactions, wondering whether sometimes they were too subjective.

It is unwise to believe in only what one can see. We should know that there are a lot of truths that are invisible, in invisible places. If you do not want to be “tone-deaf” about society, a good, piecing eye acquired from a lifetime’s experience is helpful for seeing through to the underlying purpose of information to know whether it is true or not. That is the ideal; but it becomes difficult with age.

The mass media seem to me to resemble a “demonic brain-washing machine.”
Are they really providing us with information that is close to the truth?

Their responsibilities are so grave, because of the huge and dreadful intangible power they exercise over us.
Please remember, it is a “piece of cake” for the large-circulation newspapers and nationwide television networks, with their fathomless intangible power, to fool us to the very end of the world. This is no joke.

We cannot live alone globally unconnected any longer. If someone sneezes somewhere on planet earth, their flu virus can fly and affect us as fast as the speed of light. We are living together so very closely.

We have been able to live in peace, so far, by talking to people and touching, seeing, smelling, and tasting the real thing. But because of the rapid development of IT technologies, we are plunged into a virtual society where the five senses have become redundant.
Who could ever have dreamed of this troublesome “information society” where everyone is forced to be on constant alert, to test the authenticity of its contents, as the price of convenience?
I can hardly stay afloat amid such a torrent.
I’m already far behind the IT fashion trend of the day––although rather proud of it.

Be that as it may, from tomorrow I’m going to listen to other people’s words and watch television giving them a sidelong glance, while taking great care not to get a crick in the neck.

If I happened to find an ad offering an adult education course entitled “A sidelong-glance reading course for the elderly,” provided by a newspaper company, I’d love to take that seminar.