Longing for a Touch

Dystopian novels and movies of the future would have mankind widely separated, and the thought of physical proximity may be distasteful. For those currently alive, longing for a touch is a normal part of the human experience. People today are still eager to hug and kiss a partner, and even the best technology has yet to replace it. For a look into the far future, it may be a good idea to think about the past.

Touching between people was often discouraged in many cultures over the centuries, and there was a very good reason for it. Kissing and hugging were often reserved for married couples because it was thought it might lead to improper intimacies between those not married. Couples living in most cultures today have bypassed that, and they appear to believe it is a normal part of a relationship before a permanent commitment. It does not necessarily mean they are physically intimate, but it is part of what creates a special bond between them.

Those novels of the far future of mankind would often have people of today believing that long distances are an important part of life. That is true of many more couples today, yet their ability to communicate on many levels has made it possible for them to develop a relationship that can lead to a lifetime commitment. For those who will be living in the future, there seems to be no bar to connecting in the same way.

It is often difficult to speculate correctly about how technological changes will create new cultures. The future behaviour of people will be partially rules by the technological changes and conditions present in their time, but the human need to touch will also be part of that same future. For those concerned there will be little or no reason to physically connect with another person, realizing that the technology of today has made that possible without stifling the human need to touch should be a welcome relief.