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Monday, December 23rd 2013, 0028h.
Facebook, dear babies and gentleflock, is a drug. And as with any drug, it leaves you craving for more. Every time you see a little thumbs-up ‘like’ icon, endorphins are secreted within your dainty little brain because you feel acknowledged and accepted – even perhaps loved. It’s merely a game of popularity that you are playing with yourself; thriving on the attention of others and their “approval” of you. When you are spending too much time consistently tapping into the illusory world of ostensibly loving, popular acceptance and affirmation that is Facebook, you likewise experience a sort of mild depression and peer-related angst when you share something and hardly anyone (or no one) likes it or comments on it.
It’s a ridiculous waste of time and emotions, because the truth is that most people generally don’t care about what you think or what you have to say. They are just scrolling Facebook (probably like you) looking for little easily-digestible chunks of melodramatic, analgesic gossip and fables, like a young child sitting with eyes glued to a television and watching cartoons; the longer the child sits there in that drug-like state of mind constantly needing more entertainment, the more difficult and emotionally painful it will be for the child to be removed from that environment. Essentially, it’s a matter of greed: needing more and more; wanting, wanting, wanting; me, me, mine, me, and mine.
What I’m saying is not that Facebook is evil or a completely selfish and greedy use of your time, but that it is a place/thing where overuse leads to an addictive approbation of self-grandeur, not to mention that probably only one out of a million things that occur on Facebook lacks the label of “a completely unproductive waste of your time.”
As we continually connect to more and more people, we inversely disconnect from our real relationships, and they grow thusly shallow. Aristotle said, “A friend to all is a friend to none.” Now, I doubt he was thinking of Facebook when he said that, but there are various ways you can interpret his maxim. The more time you spend trying to be a friend to everyone, the less time you are actually giving each person; so the term “friend” gradually becomes more of an “acquaintance.” A true and deep friendship takes time (and I’d wager typically physical presence): you create memories and inside jokes and memories of inside jokes and inside jokes of memories; you talk in real-time about anything and everything; you laugh together; you eat together; you listen to music together; you go places and have new experiences together; you overcome challenges and grow together. In all, you (hopefully) learn to love life more from the unique experiences you share.
Do you know what sad is?
Indeed it’s an unhappy feelings, an adjective and conditions infected by sorrow, mournful, and grief. A state of mind that possesses extensive sphere of influence, that not only it is capable of disrupting your soul but also your body. Your biological functions that produce act. Hurt feelings that happen both physically and emotionally. That is sad.
But how could a thing that happens in your mind affect your body?
Scientifically, activity in a brain region that regulates emotional reactions called the anterior cingulate cortex helps to explain how an emotional insult can trigger a biological cascade. During a particularly stressful experience, the anterior cingulate cortex may respond by increasing the activity of the vagus nerve—the nerve that starts in the brain stem and connects to the neck, chest and abdomen. When the vagus nerve is overstimulated, it can cause pain and nausea. Sounds pretty complicated, isn’t it?
Why do we feel it? Why do we feel sad?