Last Tuesday night, I went to a concert with my husband. The performer was not my choice. My husband thinks though that he is still young and hip, so we saw Ariana Grande perform (and some other people who I did not even know). The audience was young for the most part. We had crazy close seats on the floor and a great view of the stage. However, that view was obstructed by everyone in front of us holding up their phones to record the show. The guy immediately in front of me recorded the whole concert.
We go to concerts sporadically and we go because we love the experience. There is a magic to seeing and hearing a performer sing live. There is a magic to sharing that experience with the people filling the venue and listening to their screaming and singing along with the performer. We attend live performances for that shared experience. This is the reason we still attend movies at a movie theater or a football game in a stadium. The technology has become so advanced that we can watch almost any movie from the comfort of our own couch. However, it is a different experience to attend those events with the excitement of a crowd.
Watching these mainly young people watch this live concert through the screens of their phone made me think they are missing the experience. I can assure you that just because you do not have a recording or a picture of an event to post to social media, the event did still occur in your life. This blog often talks about enjoying the beauty of the present moment and this is the antithesis of that concept. Do you really want to view your life through a screen? It seems that you are being an audience member of your life rather than a participant.
My iPhone 7 plus has a screen size of 5.5 inches. My world and life would be very small if I viewed my whole life through that screen. I would miss out on things going on around me. I would miss the crack on the sidewalk and trip. I would miss the beautiful sunset. I would miss seeing the “protest” a few weeks ago of six people walking down the middle of a busy city street holding a sign and chanting. I would forget to use my other senses too. My sense of smell to enjoy a fresh rainfall or my sense of sound to hear the first birds of the spring chirping their songs.
Preserving memories is great but don’t forget to enjoy your life in the moment. My husband and I took a few pictures at the concert. He also recorded a snippet here or there. But for the most part we enjoyed the experience. We sang or clapped along. We danced so much that my feet hurt. We enjoyed looking at some of the fans’ outfits complete with bunny or cat ears. We enjoyed watching dads taking their tweenage daughters to a concert. We thoroughly enjoyed the experience and those memories are what we will talk about as time moves on. When I looked at those people that were recording every single moment it didn’t seem like they were having much fun. I wonder when they watch that video later on how they will feel about the concert. Will they remember the things my husband and I will talk about or will their experience without emotion or excitement. The memories of a fully experienced moment are so much sweeter than a picture in a book –June
Being connected to everything has disconnected us from ourselves and the preciousness of this present moment.” – L.M. Browning, Vagabonds and Sundries