Building the Bridge

 

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Building the Bridge!!!

          Former US President Barrack Obama in one of his interviews to David Letterman said this “Americans are living in a political “bubble” by personalizing their respective media streams”, he further went on to say that media is dividing Americans. One thing surprised me about President Obama’s jibe at the media was his commonality with the current President. Donald Trump who accuses the media for a lot of reasons, but there is a difference between the two, Trump has problems with specific media houses which is against him and he names it often, but Obama generalizes it. The 2016 presidential elections in the United States showed the great divide arising in political circles and how common people are influenced by this divide. This I feel is not only an American phenomenon, it is setting a global trend and the gaps are ever-widening between political parties and communities in the socio-political spectrum. The hot and steaming topic that polarizes the USA and the west is immigration, terrorism, radicalization while other nations of the east with the issues of minorities, economy, and development. It’s important to note that the world as a whole is going through a period of change and a global shift is happening across the borders. A right wing political conservative capitalism is slowly but steadily over taking left wing liberal capitalism with a greater emphasis on politics based on identity than that of welfare.

                        History of the world teaches us that we are not here by ourselves, but the decision and choices made by the ones before us shaped our course today. Tribal wars, invasions of huge empires, renaissance, colonization, industrialization, world wars, globalization etc, have shaped our times and not to neglect human reason, logic, philosophy, religion and faith and its consequences in shaping up communities can never be ignored. Yes, we have come a long way, but the question is whether we have simplified the issues of the past, or we have further complicated it? certainly, we don’t talk about barbaric wars these days but we certainly talk about cyber and nuclear wars. This generation grows in addressing the issues of the previous generation and we are leaving with a much bigger issue for the next generation to solve. Many would say and I agree to an extent post the world war 2 we are doing fine and the last 60 years have been quite decent compared to the general norm in terms of general awareness in human rights and development, but I would like to see the fragility underneath with great care. Globalization has helped a great deal in dealing with the gap, but the truth is that the rigor of globalization has left many micro gaps across the globe within communities, nations and the world. That’s why I can say this is as a paradox,”We are so connected than ever before, yet very disconnected like never before. There is a gap between mind and heart, a gap between two individuals, communities, nations and what not. The gap doesn’t denote only empty spaces but also empty hearts. It is mandatory that we address this issue now, we all know the issue is important but the question is how can we fill the gap? how can we build the bridge?

                         The 21st century have been the most revolutionary of all the previous centuries when it comes to networking and communication, the post modern world galvanized its energy to create a technological monster connecting the four corners of the world. Marco polo, Columbus, captain Cook and Mr. Livingstone would be amazed to see this day.  The world as a global village quote sounds like a primitive concept as the world has further become small to be compact in the palm of our hands. Internet has reduced the gap , it has reduced time and space to a great extent with the speed of internet is giving a tough competition to the speed of light with electrons being the difference between both. The world with the arrival of the world wide web has become more engaging, the evolution of social media has given voices to individuals where every idea matters, each emotions have become important, yet with all these developments we have the most polarized societies in many years. Whats more surprising is that , the internet which is supposed to bridge the gap is causing great divides in people. In many parts of India where I’m living , the social media have become an important tool of divide causing communal tension . It reminds me of a pathetic tragedy in the 1930’s where at the time the world was ever engaging like never before with the revolution of Radio and the enigma of television, yet that generation witnessed the great human tragedy where 6 million Jews were vaporized right under their nose. All these makes us think whether technology is being over hyped in our quest for bridging the gap. The recent floods in Kerala, India where technology was heavily used to galvanize support and organize the relief work gives us the brighter side of the internet and the social media. So the bottom line everything depend on who uses it and for what, nothing changes much. Its same like the analogy of a knife which can be used either ways.

                            Technology can help as a medium to channelize the exchange  of human ideas, beliefs and emotions, but that bridge can be used to offer help or even to make an inhumane attack. Bridges that fills the real gaps are built when we are willing to seek the truth, when we are willing to take the step to reach the truth, when we are ready to sacrifice for the sake of truth and when your truth has something good to offer to the other. In our era of fake news and post truth where many false bridges are being built, its important that we build the bridge of truth. The only way to limit the lies around is by raising our voices for the truth. Let this space seek that truth. Aletheia!!

“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John:8:32

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