We all know that certain someone who is intent on capturing every waking moment with a duck-faced selfie. They even have that one specific expression set aside, ready to plaster it on in a whim the very second a Phone is pulled out.
This addiction of taking selfies took another life on Friday as a tourist from Karachi fell into the river while taking a selfie in Baghdheri area.
According to media reports, a teenager tourist from Karachi drowned into the river in an attempt to take a selfie in Swat.
— Ammar Sajjad (@ammar8911) June 29, 2018
The 18-year-old Sheeraz, hailing from Korangi, had come to Swat on a tour. Just like any other teenager, he thought taking a picture near the wild river of Swat would make him look kewl. But he little knew what awaits him.
While trying to get more closer to the river, Sheeraz climbed onto a wet-surfaced rock, and thus slipped and drowned into the wildly-flowing river.
It is pertinent to mention here that 50 cases of drowning were reported Swat last year after which the district administration banned selfies at dangerous points along with the river.
Several signboards were installed too at various points warning the tourists about the ban on selfies.
What can we learn from Sheeraz?
Well for starters, we live in a society that is provoked into an infinite pursuit of superficial perfection that can never be attained. In a world where people are addicted to plastic surgeries and countless forms of body enhancement, foregoing things like knowledge and experience in their sole focus on living life ostensibly. We’re now at the verge of insanity, if not well over it.
Recently, the American Psychiatric Association actually confirmed that taking selfies is a mental disorder, going as far as to term the condition “selfitis”. The APA has defined it as:“the obsessive compulsive desire to take photos of one’s self and post them on social media as a way to make up for the lack of self-esteem and to fill a gap in intimacy”, and has categorized it into three levels: borderline, acute, and chronic.
Speaking on the selfie craze, Benedict Cumberbatch summarizes it well in his comments to Business Standard,
“What a tragic waste of engagement. Enjoy the moment. Do something more worthwhile with your time, anything. Stare out the window and think about life”
The solution? Minimizing exposure to the addiction and breaking down the dependence on it. What may be called for is a reality check to do away with digital narcissism – to live with social media rather than living through social media.
So if you find yourself snapping away and capturing life through the lens of your camera, add a new perspective. Work to minimize your social media presence, take in the best of life’s moments without the need to seek approval or commentary from others. Live your own life – don’t live before the eyes of others.