The Digital Age of Loneliness

Thomas Hobbes once characterized the lives of “primitives” as “nasty, brutish, and short.” In George Monbiot’s article in the Guardian, he writes instead that our lives have become “nasty, brutish, and long” due to the social isolation which afflicts the modern world. Social isolation is more deadly than obesity and smoking 15 cigarettes per day. Tied to the ever increasing loneliness is a corresponding fascination with wealth and fame. As he reports, even those with an average income of $78 million feel that their lives are inadequate. The take away message: money can’t buy happiness, only social connections can, real ones that is, not digital ones.