JOMC 240 has been a lot different than almost every class I have taken at UNC. Both in structure and content. The standard pattern of exams, textbook chapters, and writing assignments that encourage attempts at gaming the system was replaced by class discussions generated and directed by students, and earnest interest in the subject of the course.
One topic we touched upon that really struck a chord with me was living in the moment. I think this discussion is often generated by the feeling that people spend important moments looking at what is happening through the screen on their phone.
Let me first say that i think living in the moment, and enjoying life as it happens, is a valuable quality to have as a person. I think it is good because often the things that keep us preoccupied are negative thoughts, worries, and stresses.
But does technology contribute to us not living in the moment? In many people’s eyes, it absolutely has. And I can understand why they feel this way. Go to any concert or sporting event and you will see countless screens recording the action. This means that when a great event is happening, a lot of people are more concerned with sharing it on social media than focusing on enjoying the moment.
Despite this, i don’t think technology is impairing our ability to be in the moment to a significant level. Like i mentioned earlier, I think that most of not being in the moment comes from being focused on the future. Whenever somebody says someone should stop filming something and just enjoy it, I’m always amazed. Since when does taking a few pictures or a short video clip remove someone’s ability to enjoy the rest of what is going on. Also, I think I can enjoy part of a song while recording it for thirty seconds almost as much as I would without doing so. Who is to say that the current moment is more important that then one that will be shared with friends later when the pictures or video are shown?
In the end, I think being in the moment, and the value of doing so, are such subjective topics that we shouldn’t question if someone is in the moment or not. Maybe they are, maybe they aren’t, but it is not a problem that affects anyone but that person.