The Internet is a direct expression of the emerging energy structure of the planet in which the need of the individual can be met within the organic evolution of the whole, and the evolution of the whole served through the free participation of each individual.
The whole is more than the sum of its parts. The internet is more than just a global system of interconnected computer networks. It’s about us, people, and not just about technological platforms and apps, bits and bytes. As a growingly digital habitat for millions of users, as it increasingly becomes part of our life’s fabric, and not just a delivery platform, we should look beyond its material, practical and functional aspects. There’s an array of soft attributes, quality of life and mutual respect and caring that should be a strong stratum woven into its infrastructure.
The internet’s global nature transcends political, geographical, religious, national… boundaries. It offers us day in and day out innovation plateaus that reshape our communication capabilities, handling of our personal and professional life. The interconnected world of the social web offers opportunities across media and makes connectivity ubiquitous. Corporates will build the technological and commercial layers. It’s up to us to build the compassion and awareness ones. You don’t need to be a new age practitioner, or a believer in Sufism in order to consider the internet as a ground place for global consciousness, connectedness and involvement.
Connectivity is not just the physical and technical attributes of who, where and how you connect with someone. Once that is made axiomatic, the vacuum must be filled by reverting the focus to the quality of communications – the soft attributes of connectedness.
It is no longer just the sum and scope of our interactions, or, if you want, the attributes of our interactions that make it searchable for corporates to become part of the web based economic food chains. It is about trust, the values and quality of what is being communicated.
When old orders begin to crumble around us, when the current world crisis affects each one of us, and will continue to have a long run impact – we must look around and seek the deep causes and ways to make our life better.
The empathic consciousness and awareness to the soft attributes of our life, and web life, will drive harnessing us, bottom-up, to make a difference and contribute to paradigm changes that will ensure a trustworthy, transparent, empathic way of life,. This, in turn, will force corporates and institutions to embrace it in order to reach us.
Jeremy Rifkin writes about the global connection that must have a transcendent reason to it, a sense of purpose. In The Empathic civilization – the race for global consciousness in a world in crisis, he talks about the global consciousness that makes each of us responsible for the well being and quality of the whole, because we are all individuals living in a global neighborhood. Harnessing empathy in our personal communications will become the life force that sustains the greater whole of which we are all parts. This, to him, is the third industrial revolution that will release the capitalistic grip, will transcend self interested greed and will allow value based governance systems, bottom up.
The Internet, because of its individualistic nature, combined with its function as a global connectivity platform, is where such shifts can best be felt, where human connections can be strengthened, glued around value based purposes, and can influence our digital and physical existence alike. The soft attributes of empathy, consciousness, sharing, bonding for do good, are rooted in the individual choices and values. Their sharing and advocating create a global conversation that turns into a zeitgeist, that in turn creates an increasing return cycle to empower putting together the corner stones and then the blue print for different, better, more empowering paradigms.
When we insist, bottom up, in many small increments on seeking transparency, freedom of choice, decaptivation as hostages in providers’ power struggles over us, new norms are being built. Only then can the not caring as the real root of the crisis be reversed and replaced by a new caring economy that will rise through us, where each of us becomes a facilitator, particles in the global brain and heart of the web of thought and conversation. Although we each only touch a local part of it, ideas can travel a long way, by connecting the dots- create a movement whose magnitude ‘s resonance will globally impact.
These notions of values that are not hard core smart decisions but questioning, doubting realities, wanting from the heart and not from structured brain layers are beautifully expressed in Diesel’s “Be Stupid” campaign for their spring- summer 2010 collection, a campaign that encourages the religion of the heart and not of the brain. When these values become a trend and infiltrate the main stream of youngsters, the ones who have the power, culture and zeal to influence their worlds – this is the window of opportunity for paradigm shifts that will roar bottom up and hopefully reshape our worlds – the digital and physical alike.
Initiatives such as One Young World, a next generation Davos like convention of hundreds of future leaders from almost 200 countries, teaches us that when a global new strata of leaders gather, they can spread a new culture, a new zeitgeist, building their future activities on trust based, do good and new paradigms for transparent more equal doing.
This will lead to a clean life ecology, paradigm shifts based on attributes that bring back the soul to business, empower a participatory web ecology not just as noble purposes to be put as lip service in corporate identity brochures, but as a way of life, a new pact between all participants in our lives’ physical, digital and and spiritual food chains.