Wednesday, December 25, 2013

HOW TO ENJOY RELATIONSHIPS - ONLINE and OFFLINE

Last evening, an old Navy buddy visited me and I really enjoyed talking to him.

But unlike in my Navy Days, I hardly have any social life.

Now-a-days, after retirement, I am spending too much time online. 

Maybe I need to read once again an article I had written about 5 years ago.

And maybe you need to read this too...

Wish You a Merry Christmas


HOW TO ENJOY RELATIONSHIPS - ONLINE and OFFLINE
Musings
By
VIKRAM KARVE

ONLINE and OFFLINE RELATIONSHIPS 

Thanks to the advent of the internet, you have the opportunity to live in two worlds:

1. The Real World
 
and
 
2. The Virtual World 


You can also have two identities:

1. Your online identity in cyberspace

and

2. Your physical real-world offline identity in real space 


You can live a dual life:

one life online

and

one life offline

by maintaining two lives, one in real space and one in cyberspace.


You can have two kinds of relationships:

1. Virtual Relationships (or Online Relationships)
 
and 

2. Real Relationships (or Offline Relationships)


You can have two kinds of friends:

1. Offline” Real World flesh-and-blood Friends

and 

2. Online Virtual Friends
 
 
Internet is a great tool for social networking and it enables us to live two lives and enjoy the benefits of instant interaction and friendships across the globe and facilitates us to enjoy the best of both worlds.
 
It is good to have the best of both worlds, the real and the virtual, as long as you maintain a balance. 

Yes, like you try to have “work life balance” you also must have a “real-world versus virtual-world” balance in order to enjoy the best of both worlds.

How do you do this?

Well, here is one of my favourite Mulla Nasrudin stories which exemplifies this aspect:

HOUSE IN THE HILLS
An Apocryphal Mulla Nasrudin Story
By
VIKRAM KARVE

Mulla Nasrudin bought a beautiful house at a picturesque place far away from civilization high up in the hills. 

From time to time he would suddenly pack his bags, leave the city, and go away to his house in the hills.

He would disappear for days, sometimes for weeks, sometimes for months.

And just as suddenly as he used to disappear, he used to suddenly unpredictably return back to the city without any warning or notice. 

When asked the reason for his erratic and whimsical behaviour, Nasrudin explained:   

“I have kept a caretaker woman up there in the hills to look after my house. 

She is the ugliest woman - horrible, repulsive, hideous, and nauseating. 

Just one look at her and you will feel like vomiting.  

When I go to live there, at first she looks horrible. 

But slowly, slowly, after a few lonely days, she is not so horrible. 

Then after some more desolate forlorn days, she does not look all that ugly and she does not seem so undesirable. 

And as more and more time passes in lonesome seclusion, a day comes when I start seeing some beauty in her. 

Yes, after I spend some more time in that lonely desolate place, far away from civilization, a day suddenly comes when I start finding beauty in that ugly woman.

She starts looking desirable and I start getting attracted towards her.

The moment I start finding that horrid woman desirable, I know that it is time for me to escape from my house in the hills.

The day I start feeling attracted to the hideous woman means enough is enough.

I have lived away from the real world for too long.

Now even this horrible revolting woman has started looking beautiful.  

I may even fall in love with this ghastly ugly repugnant woman and that may be very dangerous for me. 

Enough is Enough.

Enough of the virtual world.

It is time to get back to the real world. 

So I pack up my things and rush back to the city.” 


MORAL OF THE STORY - Enjoy the Best of Both Worlds

Dear Reader: 
 
Has your Virtual World, your cyber space, your second life, started looking a bit too “beautiful”…?  
 
Are you spending more time in cyberspace, social networking and interacting with your virtual friends rather than having face-to-face interactions and communication with your immediate flesh and blood friends in real space?
 
Is there an imbalance between your online life and offline life? 

Are your virtual relationships overwhelming your life?

Are your online relationships taking precedence over your real life offline relationships? 

Is your online identity becoming more important to you than your offline identity?
 
Are you losing touch with reality?
 
Maybe it is time for you to return back to the Real World. 
 
Of course, when you get saturated and bored spending too much time in the real world and start feeling suffocated with relationships in the Real World, you can always go back to the virtual world which is like your alter ego.

Like Mulla Nasrudin, you can, and you must, enjoy the best of both worlds, and nurture both your online and offline relationships!

You can alternate and switch over between both your lives, online and offline, just like Mulla Nasrudin does between the city and the hill-station! 
 
Social Networking gives you a lot of pleasure and satisfaction and internet a great tool for building relationships. 

It is good to have two identities and live a dual life, offline and online, and enjoy the best of both worlds, the real world and the virtual world, as long as you maintain a balance between your two lives, one in real-space and the other in cyber-space.

So now you know what to do.

When your online sweetheart starts looking too beautiful, just go back to your offline sweetheart, and vice versa...

Wish You a Merry Christmas 

VIKRAM KARVE
Copyright © Vikram Karve 
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work. 
© vikram karve., all rights reserved. 

NB:
All stories in this blog are a work of fiction. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.
Copyright © Vikram Karve (All Rights Reserved)

© vikram karve., all rights reserved.
 

Did you like this story?  
I am sure you will like the 27 short stories from my recently published anthology of Short Fiction COCKTAIL
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About Vikram Karve

A creative person with a zest for life, Vikram Karve is a retired Naval Officer turned full time writer and blogger. Educated at IIT Delhi, IIT (BHU) Varanasi, The Lawrence School Lovedale and Bishops School Pune, Vikram has published two books: COCKTAIL a collection of fiction short stories about relationships (2011) and APPETITE FOR A STROLL a book of Foodie Adventures (2008) and is currently working on his novel and a book of vignettes and an anthology of short fiction. An avid blogger, he has written a number of fiction short stories and creative non-fiction articles on a variety of topics including food, travel, philosophy, academics, technology, management, health, pet parenting, teaching stories and self help in magazines and published a large number of professional  and academic research papers in journals and edited in-house journals and magazines for many years, before the advent of blogging. Vikram has taught at a University as a Professor for 15 years and now teaches as a visiting faculty and devotes most of his time to creative writing and blogging. Vikram Karve lives in Pune India with his family and muse - his pet dog Sherry with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts.

Vikram Karve Academic and Creative Writing Journal: http://karvediat.blogspot.com
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