You find new events and chance remarks inevitably set off a flashback reaction as you recall past happenings, past conversations. The other day I was thinking about online friends, and suddenly I remembered a comment by a wise Chinese friend, Howie. For some reason, (I don't remember what, of course) he looked at me very seriously and said, "Wicki," ( his Vs always came out as Ws) "if you have very good friends you can count on one hand, in your whole life, you have had a good life."
Imagine, a whole generation of children has grown up without the time to actually cultivate friendships. Yes, that used to be a concept we were taught. True friends are rare and precious. You treat them like flowers in your garden. You care for them, tend them, do nice things for them, even when sometimes it comes as a bit of inconvenience to you. Because that's just what friends do.
This was a powerful lesson in two ways...
- It helped you to develop introspection; to think about consequences of your behaviour.
- You developed empathy for the feelings of others. When you have empathy you don't want to hurt. In fact, you'd much rather help.
There's a slow realization that online followers of your writing work are gradually becoming friends. Then, because they are invariably also posting things on the various social sites. Through networking your mutual followers increase in numbers, until eventually, if your work is enjoyed, you end up with thousands of followers.
"What's the point?" you say ...
Sometimes I shake my head in disbelief. It's so humbling to think that thanks to the miracles of technology, I have "friends" in all parts of the world. If you look at the little spinning globe on the right side of this page, you'll notice little lights. Some of those are even in really remote parts of the ocean, just a little blinking light in a huge space of water! Each one of those is someone who enjoys my work, or at the very least, is curious about it.
And at the same time, I fret constantly at the ugliness that it brings when it is used for evil instead of good. It has enabled the spread of terrorism in every part of the world. There are no safe havens, no privacy, no rest from danger and horror every time you turn on the news.
Everything must be instant, speeded up constantly, so that it’s impossible to keep up with all technology.
Jobs are lost by the thousands as technology increases the possibilities of owners using more and more of it to dispense with the humans. There's no consideration or empathy for those who lose their homes, their livelihood. Ironically, some have to be retrained so they can play their part on the Internet. The rich get richer. The poor get poorer. It's just a fact.
Here's a clip about exactly that, which you may find interesting: Why the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.
There's talk now about it, known as artificial intelligence, actually becoming the boss of us all, turning like a super-monster on the minds of those who fed it.
Here's another one for you: Stephen Hawking warns artificial intelligence could end mankind
I have wonderful and loved new friends, and equally loved old friends.
Friends don't always get a chance to demonstrate their friendship. I'm hoping I will be one of the true friends that my friends can count on the fingers of one hand when they need to.
Until next time...
- Finer'n Frogs Hair by Crazyhorseladycx via Life Talks - I Write
- marcoujor: The Next Best Thing via mar's musings
- Scribble Shots at New Harmony Spring Fling 2015 via flashPress
Thank you for joining me for this edition!
Wishing you a safe and beautiful weekend...