Today, I am celebrating friendship with 3000 friends on the face book, and want to thank each one of you for extending your time towards the friendship. We will all grow together, a minute here and a minute there, but surely we will learn about each other and move on with life. We are one world, one people and one human race.
Just imagine if aliens from different planets gather in a convention on “Protecting the Universe” held on Planet Zenorina. The first thing we would do, is to introduce each other when we meet face to face with the “others” and while banging the heads (their custom) what would you say about yourselves?
“Hi, I’m Phyllis from Dallas, Texas” (as if they would know every one of the 10,000 Cities), or
“Hi, I’m Kumar, a Hindu from “Jhoomri Talyya, India “ ( would they know that the town?), or
“Hi, I’m Aishah and am an American” or
“Hi, I’m Chen from Planet Earth”.
What are you most likely to say?
For many of us, it is a new experience to have friends from different ethnicities, races, languages and faiths. Look at the circle of friends each one of us has; there is every one of them.
Your comments, cheers and jeers are appreciated; each one of us will learn to deal with a variety of issues with ease and at comfort of our own privacy and time. Facebook is a universe in itself that is defining the new norms of the society; the norms of pluralism.
Never before in the history of dialogues we have had the opportunity to be on the threads where we completely disagree, and yet remain engaged. It is indeed a new paradigm. Between Facebook and Google every one has the potential to be equipped with knowledge.
Facebook is the best friend one can aspire to have; you can always reach one of your friends any time of the day, 24 hours, seven days a week. There is no pressure to respond to any one or no need to respond aggressively or passively to anyone. And at times silently read things that amuse us, affect us endearingly and at times cheer us up. Your freedom is guaranteed.
If we see a note that promotes ill-will, hatred or stereotyping, most of us have a tendency to Google at least three different takes on the issue, and more than likely, the opinion you form is more tempered than those who do not seek to see other views.
I am humbled and want to thank you for extension of your friendship. May the good in each one of us interact with each other and multiply. Amen
If you have the time;
Facebook, an experiment in Pluralistic democracy http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/note.php?note_id=93866892773
Mike Ghouse is a frequent guest at the media offering pluralistic solutions to issues of the day. He is a thinker, writer, speaker, optimist and an activist of Pluralism, Interfaith, Co-existence, Peace, Islam and India. He runs the Foundation for Pluralism and World Muslim Congress and Co-Chairs the Center for Interfaith inquiry. He is a board member of the Dallas Peace Center and Memnosyne Foundation and a former commissioner at the City of Carrollton.
Mike is a Dallasite for three decades and Carrollton is his home town.His life mission is to open people's hearts and minds towards fellow beings by mitigating conflicts and nurturing goodwill. He is a peace maker and an educator with two Masters degrees and working on his doctorate in Psychology. He has two books on the horizon; Basic Islam- everything you wanted to know about Islam and Pluralism. He has authored over 800 articles on the subjects, many of them are published in the newspapers and magazines around the world. His work is reflected at 3 websites & 22 Blogs listed at http://www.mikeghouse.net/