GIVING MIGHT CHANGE THE WORLD

The internet is a great possibility of sharing the goodness in people!

Today the front page headline of the Danish newspaper Jyllandsposten is: ”Modern begging is taking place on social media.” (See original Danish version at Jyllands-posten.dk). Basic needs as food and clothing have started to be asked for online. –  What a great possibility to the receiver as well as the giver!

Resent science connects pro-social and giving activities with happiness and health, and tells that there appears to be a fundamental human drive toward helping others, which is built into the human brain in a basic biological system.(The Hidden Gifts of Helping. Stephen G. Post. 2011). PHYSICALLY, MENTALLY, EMOTIONALLY PEOPLE BENEFIT GREATLY FROM THE POSITIVE EMOTIONS THAT ARISE THROUGH THE SIMPLE ACT OF GIVING. Physically frequent volunteering has been scientifically linked to feeling healthier and to longevity. Mentally and emotionally studies have shown significant positive impact on lowered stress levels, sense of well-being and purpose in life.

Clay Shirky is lecturer in social media, theory and practice at the New York University. He argues that with the capabilities of the Internet further liberation is created that enables significant possibilities and behavioral change. Shirky says, that the Internet has liberated existing tendencies and motives. The Internet has through unlimited possibilities for free of cost reproductions of all digital elements for anyone, who has a computer, removed old barriers to universal participation and revealed that people rather want to be co-creators and activity sharing beings than passive consumers of what a few think they should be watching. Fewer young people with access to interactive media are watching television. The opportunities to comment, share, label, discuss with others in the world are favored. He claims, that the Internet has shown that PEOPLE ARE MORE CREATIVE AND GENEROUS THAN WE EVER IMAGINED, AND THAT PEOPLE LIKE TO SPEND AL THEIR FREE TIME WITHOUT FINANCIAL REWARDS ON THE INTERNET IN ORDER TO FIND AN OUTLET FOR A BASIC HUMAN URGE TO CREATIVE EXPRESSION AND CONNECTEDNESS. (See Information 2/8-10 and C. Shirky. Cognitive Surplus, Creativity and Generosity in a Connected Age. 2010).

New science is connecting pro-social and giving activities with finding meaning in life, happiness and health. Accordingly giving to others has proven to have an emotionally, mentally and physically healing effect on the giver. Experience show that people like to act creatively and generously and to spend al their free time without financial rewards on the Internet in order to find an outlet for a basic human urge to creative expression and connectednessWith existing wars, inequality problems, poverty, imbalances in the financial systems, an endangered climate and depression as today’s most important psychological problem it is essential to support giving, sharing and connection between people and projects.

The German social psychologist and psychoanalyst Erich Fromm 1900-1980, says that by giving one reinforces the living in oneself. When one is giving, one can not avoid calling something alive in the receiver, which works back at oneself. When one is truly giving, one can not fail to receive, what is given. Giving implies that one also makes the other person a giver, and they both take part in the joy of what they have called to life. (I. Yalom. Existential Psychotherapy. 2005. p. 392). GIVING TO OTHERS IS JOYOUS AND IS TAPPING OF UNUTILIZED HUMAN POTENTIAL; as Fromm says, giving brings the intended in both the giver as well as the receiver.

The internet is a great possibility of sharing the goodness in people and might become the FRAME OF HOPE where needs and unutilized potentials meet.


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