We have created alter egos. And multiple personalities. We have shattered the clear mirror of self so that the shards bounce off distorted reflections here and there. And despite what our intentions are, no matter what we believe, it is impossible to project a perfect whole when you are broken and cannot replace the pieces.

I am afraid of what we are becoming.

What are we becoming? And why am I afraid?

Empty. We are becoming empty. Distant. I am afraid we will all lose our soul. Soul. The strength of connection. The ethereality of solid contact. The magic of sitting across from one another, and talking. Truly communicating. Because now, we are made of pixels. We are still life, and memories are becoming the future. No. Why can’t we live NOW? Why can’t we live inside our own skins? Why is it so easy to like his picture and comment ‘HAWT DAMN’ on social media, and then sit beside him in congregation, unable to meet his eye, and say those exact words? Why do we find it easier to live behind a screen? We have become puppets, slaves to the glare of the camera — to a stilled dream that can never stay the same.

Now we are made of pixels. We can hide behind usernames that are abstract, separate from us, and speak like we’ve always had much to say. But we cannot use our names to do the same. And I am afraid. Because I am becoming a pixelated picture behind a camera, frozen in one moment when I can so easily transition into the next. I am a hashtag, and I am an @. And even though I bear a semblance in these pixels as I do in my melanin skin, there is a rift. There is a lie. And though it is my intention to walk this journey being myself, there is a distortion in my matrix. There is a break, that fissure where truth is lost underneath untruth and no one is any wiser for it. On the Net, I can be cool. I can be a version of myself born from stealing the personalities of so many others. I can think over that clapback before I deliver it so it’ll be as SAVAGE as possible. I can think and rethink a joke before I say it. I can blot my imperfections with Beauty Camera. On the Net, despite my promise, I can only be 2D, never truly defined, just lines and angles and perfectly sculpted captions and DMs meant to send my ‘coolness meter’ careening off the charts.

We are losing our voices, our depths, we are becoming caricatures of the human soul, preferring to live inside illusions than face the reality staring back at us. We forget that no matter how much we close our eyes, it doesn’t change the fact that the Sun keeps shining. It doesn’t change the fact that the world keeps turning.

And I am afraid that one day, we will be nothing more than likes on an obsolete, forgotten media platform; nothing more than deleted pictures on destroyed sites.

I am afraid. And I hope that you are too.

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  1. I love this. You just painted the correct picture of our society in few words. Your fear is validated by the loss of self-concept among people these days. We’re gradually losing our personalities behind the multiplicity of screens. We’ve lost our raison d’être and discarded the only screen we need- the screen of truth. This is wonderful. Thanks for this awesome piece.

  2. This troubles me everyday all the way to my spine……We’re being sold a temporary escape from our individual realities in exchange for our freedom. The advent of technology has turned us into willing zombies.

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