Can We Talk?
Where do we find community?
Or is it just faster to ask where can we not find community?
As social beings, we yearn for companionship. In an age of instant communication, we can discover community in places heretofore improbable, if not impossible.
Are online relationships preferable to those face-to-face interactions? Of course not. But with our ever-expanding social networks erasing miles, time zones, etc., it isn’t possible to have IRL (in real life) contact with each and every person. The internet has the ability to protect connections that in earlier times would have been severed out of necessity.
I remember MamaBear, z”l, telling me that she knew nothing about her grandparents. When her parents came to America, they said good-bye to more than an environment hostile to Jews. They left knowing that they would never again see their parents in this lifetime. As one of my RWB colleagues concluded in yesterday’s session on Technology and Community, that with the exception of death, there is no reason to say good bye. There is an expectation of ongoing connection.
Much time is spent decrying the potentially destructive effects of social media. Let’s not overlook the constructive ways in which sacred connections are strengthened.