Can you do this online? Imitate the gentle brush of a woman’s arm, increasing a man’s chances of being lucky in love? Or duplicate a man’s touching a woman’s arm just before asking her to dance, thus generating a 60% positive response?
Physical touch might even decrease disease. Research at the University of North Carolina indicated that women who have more hugs from partners, also have lower heart rates and blood pressure: “Hugs strengthen the immune system. The gentle pressure on the sternum and the emotional charge this creates activates the Solar Plexus Chakra. This stimulates the thymus gland, balancing the body’s production of white blood cells, which keeps you healthy and disease free.”
University of California’s School of Public Health says that eye contact and a pat on the back from the doctor may boost the survival rate of patients with complex diseases. Recent studies also indicate that physical togetherness enhances moods, and positively influences overall health. Current lifestyle trends like extreme outdoor sports, DIY and craft are practiced in groups, not alone.
Despite Netflix, movie going remains popular. Right now, digital connectedness has never been so easy, and seems so addictive. Facebook had over 1 billion users as of last fall, Snapchatters load 8,796 photos per second, WhatsApp serves up over 30 billion messages a day. But we are social beings. People still want and need physical and group interaction and real-life experiences.
“We live in a technological universe in which we are always communicating. And yet we have sacrificed conversation for mere connection.” Sherry Turkle, an MIT researcher and author, makes a compelling case that children develop better, students learn better and employees perform better with face-to-face interactions. Top social researchers are scrutinizing whether the Internet helps human relationships or completely shatters society by limiting people to hangout only with same-minded friends.
“Our rapturous submission to digital technology has led to an atrophying of human capacities like empathy and self-reflection, and the time has come to reassert ourselves, behave like adults and put technology in its place,” says Turkle.
Some studies claim that despite the benefits of digital advancement, it is vital to preserve human touch in order for us truly to thrive. So reach out and touch somebody.
Books available at Amazon.com. Click on title to order.
New York Times bestseller, Reclaiming Conversation: The Power of Talk in a Digital Age
Community in the Digital Age: Philosophy and Practice
Andrew Feenberg and Darin David Barney
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