Learning anything from the Amish about electronics seems odd. After all, they do not believe in them. They don’t use electricity and plow fields with horses. They believe that by forgoing modern advances that they are keeping themselves closer to God. When we look at gadgets released this year, we see 6 reasons the Amish were right about 2015 Coolest Gadgets.
Technology Minimizes Personal Contact
The Amish lifestyle requires them to know their neighbors, be part of their community, and actually talk to people face-to-face. Smartphones allowed texting to replace human conversation even on the phone. If you have teenagers then you have seen this phenomenon. They sit across the room – or even beside their friends – and text them rather than have a conversation.
This year we saw the Razor OSVR released. It is a virtual reality device that allows you to immerse yourself in another world. It is easy to see how this can further reduce personal contact. You now cannot only avoid actually talking to another person but avoid the world altogether.
Technology Reduces Sense of Community
This year, we have seen more appliances released that are internet enabled. There are even some that can now order your groceries. We have seen companies announce they are working on technology that will increase home delivery. For example, Amazon and now Wal-Mart have both stated they are working on using drones to deliver to home faster. There is no doubt that this has the potential to reduce our connection to the community around us. We are able to spend more times in our homes and have less need to leave.
We are Forgetting How to Be Independent
The more gadgets that we have in our homes then the more we need electricity and forget how to do without it. Imagine if electricity ended tomorrow. Consider how many things you would have trouble doing? Your kids would probably go nuts because they have lost the ability to play outside. They couldn’t play with other kids in the neighborhood because they probably don’t know who they are.
Gadgets Can Disconnect Us from Family
We talked about how texting has disconnected us from our fellow man. But, that is just one way that it can disconnect us. Gadgets can also disconnect us from our family. In our desire to have the coolest gadgets or get our children the newest electronic toys, we feel the need to work harder. Monthly service for our cable, phones, tablets, etc. increases our monthly bills. The more we work then the less time we spend with our family.
I am not saying that we all should become Amish. Even the Amish have started selectively letting technology into their society. For instance, they allow limited use of tractors and power tools. I am saying that there are some warnings that we can learn from them. We cannot become so dependent on technology that we lose complete touch with other people and our community. It comes down to anything can cause problems if not used in moderation.