Friday, May 4, 2012

Get Small

I love all the ways we can share our lives in this day of social networks whether it is through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Foursquare, texting or some other mode. I use them regularly to complement my regular face-to-face interactions. Unfortunately there is a temptation to abuse this for telling others a little too much about our strengths and lives as if others are living for our next post.

G.K. Chesterston, in his classic ORTHODOXY  was well ahead of his time in challenging us away from our need to over self-promote. This is a great call toward what it means to be humble and genuinely care for others:

"Are there no other stories in the world except yours; and are all men busy with your business? Suppose we grant the details; perhaps when the man in the street did not seem to see you it was only his cunning; perhaps when the policeman asked you your name it was only because he knew it already. But how much happier you would be if you only knew that these people cared nothing about you! How much larger your life would be if your self could become smaller in it; if you could really look at other men with common curiosity and pleasure; if you could see them walking as they are in their sunny selfishness and their virile indifference! You would begin to be interested in them, because they were not interested in you. You would break out of this tiny and tawdry theatre in which your own little plot is always being played, and you would find yourself under a freer sky, in a street full of splendid strangers."

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