American psychologist Abraham Maslow’s 1943 theory of Hierarchy of Needs is well-known in many countries. Although in later years through his extended studies of diverse cultures, he tried to modify the highest tier from “Self-actualization” to “Self-transcendence” to encompass broader cultural influences, a recent humor with joking modifications of his Hierarchy from China is simply more illuminating. [See Pic#1 and Pic#2]
The humor in fact touches on some naked truth. Indeed the modern men need to be connected at all time and at all places. When food and drink are abundant, when comfortable life styles become a matter of fact, when we all feel fairly good about ourselves, when all leisured or non-leisured pursuits are mostly through various information systems and electronically connected conveniences, how could a contemporary person of today live without an online connection or an electronic device? It could only get more so in the days to come.
However, what if one day we were pushed back to the very basics of living by the sheer forces of nature? Would anyone be ready for a cave man’s life style even just for a few days? Would those type of events change our perspectives about life and modern technologies? Would we be sufficiently equipped with some basic survival and humanistic skills that may be required under such rare yet totally possible circumstances? If not yet, we may need start thinking about these questions. Moreover, would we allow ourselves to be put into the category of robots or machine men too soon?