Internet romantic fantasy:The follies and the trap

via Gopi Melethil published on May 20, 2006

Although the human mind will always be something we marvel at, it is unfortunately not foolproof when it has to deal with psychological deception and virtual Internet fantasy traps. The mental short cuts many gullible individuals use to arrive at most of the decisions they take,
are by no means foolproof. Unless such individuals prone to fantasy and daydreaming are aware of the psychological deception, they will unknowingly fall into the trap.

A case in point illustrates this point. Last week, media reported that two Indian girls aged 22 and 24 were arrested by Indian Border Security Police while trying to cross in to Pakistan through the Line of Control at Chakan-D-Bagh in Jammu. Two Pakistani Muslims from Lahore through the Internet lured the girls. Two Pakistani Muslims Khalid Mumtaz and his brother, who lives in Lahore met these Indian Hindu girls Asha Patel of Mumbai and Asha Sharma of Nainital through Internet. These Hindu girls were chatting through Internet without knowing the real identity,
background, personal characteristics or the hidden motives of these Pakistani Muslims.

Over the years, the Internet chat intensified and these two Hindu girls were fantasizing on romance and sex. Their Internet romance and elaborated set of cognitions characterized by preoccupation with a fantasy life, anchored in emotion, led to elaborate plans to illegally cross India to meet these Pakistani Muslims. Whether the Internet chat is a fantasy or virtual reality, it ultimately led to covertly act-out-behavior.

The unfortunate incident highlights several issues on Internet chat with unknown persons, parental responsibilities and the role of modern technology in shaping social, cultural, personal values. It is natural to ask the question: were the parents aware of the Internet chat of the girls, its content and the person at the other end? What were they doing to prevent such a tragedy? Why the family allowed these girls to fully engage in scrumptious activities? One must admit that the family is as guilty as hell on this account. They have failed in parenting responsibilities in this regard.

The unfortunate incident remains a delicate irony, which borders on blithe self-inflicted cruelty. It is utterly incomprehensible, that Indian parents that value Hindu culture immensely, often failed to imbibe the spirit and values to their children. This is one of the few paradoxes confronting
Indian parents. The magnitude and self-imposed neglect and cruelty invariably extend into other realms of Indian daily life.

Are modern technology, Internet, Television, secularism, western life styles and excessive freedom for the adolescents to blame? It’s an uncontested reality that secularism practiced in India, westernization, ever changing values and the Internet has led citizens in a quagmire.
The secular education, and the imitation of the decadence of western lifestyles got people into the present quagmire. And their seeming inability to extricate themselves from real or imagined marginalization, has in itself become another major problem. Some observers have attributed the present quandary to the dogged secular policies of India. The pseudo secularism has destroyed the social fabric, Hindu values and spiritual traditions of India. The present realities are antithetical to conventional family wisdom. Some also attribute the root causes of the family crisis to the lingering political, social, cultural disequilibria in India, which in itself, is a vestige of the atheist, anti-national, secular political system bent on destroying the Hindu society.

This unfortunate episode indicates the need for Hindu families to join together and work in unisom for continued preservation of Hindu traditional values. Hindus have to collectively articulate Hindu priorities to achieve political, economic, social and cultural power as a critical and integral component of our nation. To do either, would require a sea change in our
focus and policy.

Hindu families, groups and communities should join together to preserve, practice and promote Hindu values. Children should be made proud of their heritage. Parents should enhance their self-esteem by continued education on Hindu cultural heritage. Hindu children and adolescent with self-confidence and self-esteem will not unwittingly become an added burden for the nation. They will not become a victim of Internet bait.

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