Empathy and Cell Phones

When a mom looks at her baby and smiles, you often see the baby smile. When you see a dad hold his baby and frown, you see the baby frown or make an unusual face. When you see a skateboard crash-video on YouTube, you wince in pain as you somehow feel what happens to the person tumbling. This is because of mirror neurons. Mirror neurons allow Us to mimic the experience and feelings of others. These moments are the building blocks of EMPATHY. What is most important in these examples is that there is some form of face to face contact or simply witnessing the experience of another person. This is necessary in order to sense the other’s experience. So what happens when our eyes are more focused on our cell phones than people? Answer = We stop developing the mirror neuron system, and thus stop developing empathy. Look around any cafeteria or restaurant, and notice how many people are looking at their phones instead of one another. Notice when you are walking around your school hallways or town’s main street, and see how many people are walking and looking down at their phone, totally unaware of what’s going on around them. I am guilty of this from time to time, and I admit I need to practice what I am about to preach. Please, let’s be punk rock and go against the stream, and stop staring at our phones when we’re around our friends, family and community. Let’s look at one another and seek to connect to people instead of being hypnotized by our phone. We need more empathy on this planet. I am sure most of you have noticed this? Let’s focus on empathy, not cell phones, so that we don’t become robots walking around with our handheld software telling Us what to do, think, feel and be.

Scroll Up