February 17, 2012

The Social Media Sūtras.

Never before have we been so unaware of our awareness of the nowness of now.

What could be more yogic in principle than twitter, or your newsfeed on facebook?

Social media is me, it is you; it is our past and future, and a celebration of the present moment.

I tweet that I am having quinoa for lunch and a moment later, I am off to yoga class. This is the celebration of now. Everything happens as it is happening and then moves effortlessly into the past.

Life functions in this way too. However, we often overlook this fact. Every tweet is equally as ephemeral as each of the 86,400 seconds that compose every day.

How many of those seconds did you realize were passing you by? 10, 15, 1,857? Do you even know?

There are a few luminaries lighting our path: these luminaries have created the wondrous technologies with which we spend vast amounts of time. It is because of these seers, these people who are attuned to the whispers of the collective zeitgeist, that we are celebrating the now.

The seeds of nowness are plated in our minds in 140 characters (or less) at an average of 140 million times per day. Since twitter’s inception, we have been reminded over one billion times that now is what matters.

Now is where it’s at.

Likewise, Facebook is a wonderful collection of memories, future ambitions and a celebration of the now.

By contrast, we, as humans, love to live in the dreams of the future and the good old days of our past. We live, and then relive, our lives on a backpedaling wheel ad infinitum. We try to relive and rewrite history in the hopes that it will change our current situation—as if it ever could.

Time travel is fascinating, indeed, but reading a period piece in The New Yorker is going to benefit you more than tirelessly trying to rewrite what has already happened.

Social media allows us to grow freely, or to remain forever stagnant. Our evolution is directly related to our willingness to participate in this digital (r)evolution.

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.”  ~Mark Twain

It is through social media that our minds and our philosophies are able to change like the winds. Now, we can travel further and faster than we could ever experience in our terrestrial lives.

We grow as people, and as a society through the collective musings shared and shared again, compounding our imaginative and philosophical reach beyond the scope of human consciousness. Through this we are presented with a profound opportunity to create a more open world, wherein happiness and peace are the new norm.

Tiny Buddha Chilling on a Cairn by brockamer

The downside, of course, is that we can lose sight of the fact that there is another human—another person who has experiences, and life, and responsibilities—on the other side of our tweets/emails/posts/and tumblogs.

We can, all too often, use our perceived anonymity to express anger in ways that we would never vis-à-vis. This is where we have to be more of a yogi and less of a social media junkie looking for our next LOLCat fix.

Social media is teaching us to celebrate the now, and we must teach the socially engaged how to celebrate each other with mindfulness and empathy, and with the same openness we express every time a new meme floats across our screens.

Compassionate Social Media is our future, and is how we will create a better, more ecologically, economically and socially responsible world.

We have to bring mindfulness into social media, and not lose ourselves behind the veil of our avatars. Our compassion and empathy is endlessly expressed through our selfless promotions of other people’s art, and our donations to new socially conscious non-profits and NGOs.

This is the way of the new world: act out of kindness, not forever in search of profit at any expense.

You are a part of this movement by virtue of your username: be the change you want to see in the world, and utilize the gifts that social media has given us in every tweet, and every wall post.

This is the new social world order.


Photo here and here

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