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15.10.14

I don't think so. Even if they are, it's only skin deep.

Using Facebook and Twitter, taking photos from DSLRs, clicking selfies from iPhones, boozing and clubbing on weekends, gym-ing and so on are what I refer to as "skin deep modernism" or what is famously called "Aping the West". And this is what the youth is doing. They are blindly adopting only those things which they can see - in movies, news, etc - and term this as being modern. These things are a part of a lifestyle that has been derived from modern advancement, they are an an indication of modernity, not modernity itself. If today Apple decides to donate iPhones to all of Africa, we won't say Africa has become a modern continent.

I believe that being modern is a shift in science and technology, how we think, behave and act, and therefore requires a deeper understanding than what is visible in movies. Doing advanced research to develop power efficient phones like iPhone, packing millions of transistors to create Intel-like chips, creating weather-agnostic seeds, attempting to develop low cost drugs for cancer - these are modern advancements. We successfully put Mangalyan on Mars orbit, built nuclear weapons, constructed Metro transportation in cities - these reflected modernity. Modernity means treating servants and waiters with respect, not eve teasing a girl when you see her, neither judging nor caring about others while jogging on streets, not looking down upon a friend who is working part-time in McDonalds to pay his college's fees and so on. It requires a radical shift in our thought process that is based on casteism, social statuses, gender inequality, etc

Parents bashing, coming from the West, is considered to be modern and solution for all problems. But do you know that children in West start earning for themselves from their teens, and pay their own college fees and rent? You cannot decide your own future and then order parents to pay for it. Being independent is modernity, parents bashing is not. A lot of people claim to be feminists, but many of them don't even know what it is. Feminism, women empowerment and gender equality are much needed, but it is essential to go one level deep to actually understand these concepts for their effective implementation.

So I believe you got the essence of the answer. Becoming modern requires an evolution - in thoughts, education and implementation. It requires deliberate and conscious efforts to get to the root cause of change. Modernity will come when youth would start questioning "Why" and "How" to what they see, and not just adopt these and stop. The evolution process has started, but there is still time before I can say that the youth today is becoming "modern".

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