There used to be times when entire neighborhood lived like a close-knit family. Not just did they spend their leisure hours together but just like family members they knew almost every detail about every house’s happening. The feeling of community and oneness was tremendously strong. People not just attended their neighbor’s functions rather they participated wholeheartedly in preparations of the same. They stood with each other in difficult times. Kids played, studied and grew together. Food was shared and so were joys.
Times changed, the circle of closely knit shrunk from entire neighborhood to few adjoining houses. Information started being filtered and shared with the neighbors; hiding some crucial details and revealing the rest. The wide common courtyards got divided by individual house boundaries. However, still the neighbors continued to be the ones who were there any time and in any difficulty.
Then we come to recent times, our times. I wonder how many of us actually even ‘KNOW’ our neighbors. Privacy and zero-interference have become the mantras of modern times. Leave aside neighbors, people in the same house are often ignorant of what the other person is dealing with.
Rise in flat culture, frequent shifting of houses cities/locations for work, busy schedules, are few prominent factors responsible for diminishing inter-neighbor relations. On top of that technology, which provides everything at the doorstep on one click has given individuals a feeling of self-sufficiency and in-turn reduced their dependency on the ones living around.
Every other day we hear of incidents about someone being murdered next door and neighbors completely unaware of it. Someone commits suicide in their house and people around don’t notice that person’s absence. No one gets to know anything until that person finally has some visitor at their place. Living in societies which have thousands of residents majority of people suffer from loneliness and look for someone to talk to. Terrorist, and illegal activities are carried from residential areas and no one in the neighborhood doubts a thing. Could any of this been possible in the earlier times?
Yes, technology can make us independent but it can never replace human interaction. Concern about neighbors invading your privacy does hold valid but no one being concerned or noticing if you lie sick in your house for days is also extremely painful.
So, no matter how busy in your life you are it is always a good idea to atleast know who lives next door and share some cordial greetings with your neighbors every time you see them.