Power of Community
I think a lot about “community”. I’m in several – as most of us are – and they’ve been changing. A lot.
I can’t quite tell whether I’ve changed and therefore I stopped fitting in to some groups, or whether I changed and they didn’t feel I fit in, or whether the Universe has just been moving me on to different groups of people and circumstances. At any rate, over the last few years, my closest circle of friends has changed totally, and some parts of my circle/s have changed 2-3 times.
There have been some friendships lost which I angsted over and took hard; others passed by rather peculiarly. Simultaneously, a lot of other change occurred, and continues to occur, and I’ve realised there are so many extraordinary people in the world that I may know, that I can learn from, that continue to fill my heart with that special love that one has for and with one’s friends.
In our myriad and complex relationships, friends new and old will come and go… we will learn from them all, and the wider our circles extend in the world, the richer that education becomes. Online networks have served to heighten that experience also, and whilst some may say these are less than ‘normal’ or real friendships, my own experience is very far from it.
Our communities, the different ones that we participate in – work, social, suburb, school, online – offer up limitless opportunities for growth, heightened experience of the world, and greater understanding of our place in it. We may even, with age, perceive more readily the notion that there is a reason why each new person we meet has come across our path.
With any decision to change, clean out, freshen up, balance, reflect, relax… we will experience changes in our relationships, and new friends will appear. I want to say that a) that can be expected; b) it’s not so worthwhile to judge such changes, least of all where you may be inclined to judge yourself; c) revel in, and relish, the new relationships that appear; and d) let old friends go, when for whatever reason it has become time to.
I want to say a word for the incredible power of the virtual community. I create online communities: virtual groupings of real people. These are very real friends, some of whom I’ve had the opportunity now to meet, in the flesh so to speak! It’s my experience that all people are much more able to work towards goals through the power of a group with a common purpose – and in a virtual setting this combines the courage of positive expression with friends we haven’t met yet. Bonds are formed; necessarily others elsewhere will change. These are normal changes in the life of any dynamic person seeking to change and improve their own lives; necessarily their relationships will change also. The world is both bigger and smaller – there is so much more of it available to us, but much more quickly and easily. Enjoy those international, “virtual” relationships – they’re magic, and you are co-creating a new, peaceful, linked-in world.
It is so easy for many of us to tell ourselves “I’m not lovable” or “No one likes me”, when in fact things are just changing. As they do. Enjoy.