Why Facebook can't cure – or cause – loneliness

Bethany Keeley-Jonker

May 31, 2012

Well put. Like anything else "created" by fallen humanity in a fallen world, it can be used for good and for bad. The same thing was said about TV when I was growing up; now it's Facebook. New target, same accusation.

Marta L.
June 1, 2012

This was a really interesting meditation on loneliness, and thank you for recognizing that the time "wasted" on FB is often time well spent nurturing relationships. That's a problem you see in lots of areas of life. How many people consider time just "doing nothing" together a waste, online or off?

I'd like to suggest something a little radical, though: loneliness isn't a result of the Fall. Humanity is the only species God describes as even being capable of being alone; we are meant to strive after what we don't yet have. What the Fall did do is make us see this as a bad thing rather than the necessary condition for growth. (Loneliness is what makes us stretch out beyond ourselves.) And I think that's one of the great losses we have suffered: that what should be an almost pleasant yearning has become so tortuous.

Actually, there's a big part of me that wonders whether it isn't a <i>cause</i> of the Fall. If you read the Genesis accounts carefully you see there's a difference between what God told Adam and Adam told Eve about why she shouldn't eat from the tree. That's always struck me as a lack of trust on his part (that she didn't need protecting from the real reason - that it was good enough for him but not for her), which in many ways is the natural counterpart of that yearning for someone other than ourselves.

I wonder if that's worth considering. It seems we're all longing for someone because we are dynamic, meant to partake in God's role as creator in our own ways.

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