For a year or so now, having mulled over Marva Dawn and others, I’ve been thinking of leaving Facebook. I’ve felt swamped and overtaken by the largeness of it. Status updates have become a form of entertainment. I watch my friends’ lives like I watch TV. Deep conversations have been replaced by one-liners. The laziness of being connected to so many on such a shallow and virtual level is showing up in my real relationships as a perpetual form of people-fatigue. Though I know facebook is somehow distorting my ability to relate to others and transforming flesh and blood into information bytes, I am strangely addicted to it as a form of guaranteed entertainment. Yes, this stuff has been on my mind…
My friend Dan Chen (many of you know him as my awesome wedding photographer) just left the big FB. Thankfully he bothered to tell us why. Please take the time to enjoy this feast of thought.
From Dan Chen’s new collaboration blog, newliteracy:
before i go on, like socrates did, i must apologize for my arguments will have their flaws. i apologize, not because the content of my writing will be inherently offensive, but that it is in great deal hypothetical, theoretical, and above all personal. if at times i come off as pretentious, patronizing or contemptuous i assure you it is not my intent. it is my hope that whatever relational capital i have stored up with those who know me would provide me with some leniency in regards to the brash nature of this content and not disassociate these words with the human soul that is behind them. my tone may at times be as one of passion and seem to lose all grip on logic. and at times what logical arguments i will try to make will be severely limited by incomplete perspective. but then again such are the difficulties with presentation of ideas, that unfortunately we are not always equipped with the full gamut of human experience and knowledge. with all that said, let me continue.
i am in search of truth. i would like to think we all are but because we live in a world of endless distractions and a culture of trivial pursuit; it is with much sadness and sorrow that i think the current state of reality is in-conducive to truth-seeking and as such we no longer come across artists or philosophers anymore, and furthermore that the force of actions of good men and women have been blunted. perhaps i use the word too loosely. what i mean to say, at least in regards to what i’ve written below, is that i am in search of truth within myself, for a wholeness of being, a continuity between the integrity of my soul and my human experience. i dare not speak for all, nor as one who knows much about anything. i’m simply contemplative in my nature, with the difficulty usually being how i make sense of my thoughts practically. i want to hand out onions. i’d like to see fruit born.
it may be of wonder to some why something as seemingly inconsequential as the act of leaving facebook would inspire such a rise within others or one’s soul. but it is true. upon discovery, people will ask ‘why,’ perhaps out of curiosity or maybe even out of wonder. with all that facebook has to offer in its near god-like, near omnipresent and seemingly omniscient presence in our lives; why would one ever leave such a sanctuary? it’s my guess that we’ve all been fooled and in the process have done some ill-fitting mental gymnastics that have led us to think that facebook is harmless and just not that big a deal. but our actions and words prove otherwise. there is something deeper to all this that has affected everything we do from relationships to business to church.