To tell more.
|Storytelling by vintagedept|
Recently, I've been thinking heavily, and by 'heavily,' I mean in a scholarly kind of way, about how profoundly lucky the humans who get to live today (in this digital world) are.
Sure, the world is connected in a way that would baffle the likes of Ernest Hemingway or Thomas Edison, and many of the earliest geniuses, if they were to come back to life at this very moment.
Some would say that it is both a blessing and a curse to be living in a place where information shoots and flies instantly from one place to another. This particular 'division' in a single opinion is specifically the object of my scholarly introspection in such matter. You see, it is time that we make solid opinions on things that matter today. Saying that something is both good AND bad honestly does not help anyone. It just creates more generations of people with opinions that go "It's both good and bad."
If my future child asks me, "Mom, what do you think of the internet?" I do not think I'd like to say, "Honey, it's both good and bad...,because blah blah blah.."
Okay. Now that the "blessing and a curse" opinion is out the window, this is what I think:
The internet is good. It is good because it is a testament to human intelligence and constant habit of moving forward. With the internet, the primitive form of communication leveled up, and storytelling became something that permeates across borders, and not just between two or more people who share the same physical space. With stories being communicated fast through this medium, we get to care more, to love more, and to be inspired more.
What moved me to think about all these, surprisingly, aren't publications on communication or information technology. Actually, what moved me to ponder thoughtfully about this was a youtube channel called DocuFilmTV. Every night, or every other night, for the past week, I was captured by these stories of extraordinary people, who I would not have known about if it were not for this piece of technology called the internet. I continue to learn about stories of people with strange yet real-life conditions that I wouldn't have the opportunity to better understand had I just read them in books. And then I also learn about their friends and families and communities who help make life better for them despite their conditions. These stories are real, and they remind us of the things that we take for granted--gifts like our abilities to see with our eyes and appreciate, the gift of a mother's love, the gift of our growing-up years.
A simple forum in the internet where people with a strange syndrome come together, and which gives those who suffer from it the life-changing moment of discovering that they are not alone becomes as important a place as one's own home. Suddenly, there is one less lonely person in the world. And who knew, even one less life lost due to helplessness.
Ultimately, I think what the internet does for us is to remind us of the gift of life. As information is shared, meaning is also shared, and suddenly, seemingly disparate lives become connected. Regardless our age, we assume the eager attention of young children sitting on the floor, while we listen to the stories told by this virtual Storybook Lady...except that she does not tell of fairy tales alone, but also of real life tales from distant places. From our own little space, we smile or cry or open our eyes in shock, or laugh. Whatever it is, we are moved.
"But what about sinful or unlawful acts committed due to the internet, due to this access to information? I would imagine my child asking me, maybe as part of homework or something.
Whatever anybody tells you, honey, it is not technology's fault that it is here or that it is used improperly. It is always a human choice to do evil or good. This is why it is even more important that we use technology to inspire kindness, compassion, inspiration...because we will always be tempted to use it otherwise if we, too, fall for the common trap of blaming anything else but our own personal choices.
I truly believe that we are an extremely lucky bunch of humans to be experiencing and encountering more of this digital life. I have no idea if the next generation would be luckier ones. But today, THIS is what I think.
And I am grateful for this gift of life. And the many more countless stories it will live to tell. I hope you are, too.
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