The age of sharing
June 3, 2014
We are pioneers in one of history's great events. We now have the potential to connect our images, sounds and written words to every being on planet Earth. This democratization cuts across all traditional lines--of nation, religion, race, language and gender. Theoretically, the result is equal opportunity for all. Those with passion--who wish a broader education, want to be part of something greater, or merely need to proclaim their presence--ensure the Internet is here to stay.
The Internet is the New Frontier of friendship--of brotherhood and sisterhood. An instrument of understanding, it holds out the promise of a more peaceful world. The Internet will eventually penetrate every house, hut, tent, igloo, bungalow, saloon and bunker worldwide. Like the Wild West, early lawlessness will be brought to order and tamed. Machine translations will let everyone know what's happening. As guardians of the new order, we must try to keep the hucksters at bay and the bad guys out. We also need to neutralize those big players who would manage the menu.
Apart from the nascent commercial bonanza, creative people are suddenly swapping photos, paintings, poems, pedagogy and paradigms. A new blog floats into the blogosphere every second, a new idea every nanosecond. Without even getting into your flivver, you can now see what others in the Great Electronic Art Club have done in the last half hour. A tune composed in Perth, Australia, is immediately whistled, hummed and committed to an orchestra in London, England. Today, the lone artist rides with a hundred thousand others. The message of the medium is the competition is tough and getting tougher. And quality finds friends. And different folks from different lands are not so different after all. Our Global Village is learning to share.
PS: "The earth is but one country and mankind its citizens." (Baha'u'llah)
Esoterica: As the Internet celebrates sharing, we are now in the process of reprogramming ourselves to a universal human experience. At the same time, the idealists among us still feel that diversity will prevail. In the words of Dr. Michael Beckwith of the International Spiritual Center, "We are on the planet to wrap our consciousness around the divine treasure within each of us." This implies individual empowerment, responsibility, and the need to be the best we can. "There are no passengers on spaceship earth. We are all crew." (Marshall McLuhan)
This letter was originally published as "The age of sharing" on September 19, 2006.
SG note: The outpouring of messages in response to Robert Genn's passing is an illumination. Your friendship, and the sharing of your connection inspires, comforts and encourages us. Thank-you - every one - for your words of condolence, celebration, grief, gratitude and understanding. Many of you are facing a similar life event as I write this. Many more have experienced loss and share your wisdom generously. A number of you were also born on May 27th, and embrace the poetry in Dad's last day. A great number of you are responding by picking up your tools.
I am in the process of reading every single one of your heart-stirring messages. Thank-you.
Sara Genn, The Genn Family, and the Painter's Keys team
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