Social media, two words that did not exist for the majority of the computer age. Two words that we use and value. Social, speaking and interacting of people. It is the base word for “Society” of which we all are a part of. Sociology, the study of social structures or the study of how people interact with people differently in the world. Media is our informative apparatus that some would argue controls and others argue informs the masses. A system by which we have accountability, in potential, and identification of the nouns that affect us.
Both social and media are good and necessary, so why is it when we put them together do we have such issues?
Social media for me has reunited me with people I have not seen in person in years. Good friend of mine lives 1200 miles away and 19 years removed but we are in contact thanks to social media. My high school reunion, which I have friends from since, I learned about the event on social media. Videos and chats and post and pics have connected us. Social media serves me as I blog and preach and share and challenge. I have friends whom I’ve never met from social media who are as accountable to me, and I to them as if we grew up together.
Social media for me has separated me from people I have seen many times in years. Crushes and ex’s and former friends who live 12 miles away and 19 mins removed but we are not in contact thanks to social media. I’ve learned that I have friends who are seemingly more satisfied with a screen touch than a hand touch. Videos and chats and posts have separated us as the social has been whittled down to online encounters with emoji’s and LOL’s of media. I have friends who I’ve known from before social media who are no longer accountable to me and I to them even though we grew up together or over years in life.
Virtual reality is what and how people live now. People who have your number will still tag you in a birthday post rather than directly call or at least text you for the same reason. Your number in my phone or mine in yours is evidence of an earned trust that says:
“Yes, I am okay with you contacting me, being a part of my life and that may very well interrupt my daily flow. I welcome you by choice, not by necessity, you have my permission.”
Virtual – very close to being something without actually being it – Merriam Webster definition
Almost reality is a better way to say it.
I almost called you, but I hit you on the social.
I almost asked her out, but I looked on her page and judged a picture she forgot she had posted.
I almost interacted with you, but I decided to fake interact with you.
I am not saying that good has not happened online, but online is a supplement rather an extension to actual reality.
We all choose to show a part of ourselves online. We are all a walking, living book, each day a line or a page in a chapter which we choose to highlight. Somewhere, we have idolized, categorized or identified the 5% that someone shows online as the whole person. We have become binary “0” and “1”, black and white completely intolerant to when someone “strays” beyond the walls that we built for them in my mind about who I allow you to be to me.
If you vote differently – gone
If you post too much – gone
If you post too little – gone
If your profile pic is too old – gone
If you speak about your faith – gone
If you don’t speak about your faith – gone
The list is endless, but my question is this:
WHO CAME UP WITH THESE RULES?!?!
Life is hard enough, now I have to add “almost life” and “almost life” rules that have match up with “almost life” expectations and capture all of this and drag it kicking and screaming into real life and watch it die like a fish out of water?
Who has time for this……..apparently, a lot of people.
When you are strong within yourself, anything you put your hand to is a tool that you can learn to utilize for your improvement and the improvement of others.
Karate is a Japanese martial art which originated in Okinawa, Japan. The word “karate” basically translates to “empty hand”, however karate does employ the training and usage of weapons. A lot of these weapons were derived from farmers tools. So, the Sai and nunchakus had previous designated usages from farming. Farming = sustenance in the form of food and ability to barter and trade with, all which translates to nutrition, wealth and life for self, family and community. As the martial art developed those same tools became weapons to defend self, family and community. Martial arts also, and most importantly, develops the mind and body and provides an avenue to promote well-being through discipline and is traditionally shared from generation to generation.
The point I am getting to is that my empty hand can be in and of itself a tool or a weapon. Anything my hand holds can also be a tool or a weapon, it is the intent of my mind and heart that makes the determination between the tool and the weapon.
Social media is as powerful as we let it be. If we give it too much power, it will be like a weapon that if not used properly can cut or maim the wielder or others. As a tool, we can unite others and get messages out that can promote the unity and forward progress so many of us desire.
What we desire more is to be heard. Now we have a platform and we go hard on it but what are we saying?
I feel as though we have let them potential of a platform, the potential for power and influence take hold of us and we are not having social media serve us, we are serving social media and getting carved up from it.
It would be so great to realize our greatness is in our unity and we now more than ever have the tools to become what we claim we want to be. What are you doing with your power, you are reading what I am doing with mine. Be blessed.