This morning I deleted a semi-angry comment from my beautiful dandelion picture ‘post’ on facebook and restricted an individual from accessing my profile.
Here is what happened: I found a pretty dandelion lying across our patio, like a little puppy lazing in the sun. Of course it demanded a picture and I happily obliged. The picture was shared on Facebook as I have many contacts who appreciate such pictures and conversations with me. That was yesterday. I woke up this morning and as I checked the notifications on my newsfeed, I found one that indicated that someone had left a comment on my picture.
I clicked on the notification and was taken to the comment which to my horror turned out to be a semi-angry comment with frenzied words written in a ‘vigilantist-state’ of mind with many capital alphabets and enough and more exclamation marks giving an illusion of trees lined up in the forest. The comment basically demanded that I leave the dandelion alone for ‘bees and bunnies’ !! Though it was the written word but it did seem like the person was very agitated and upset. Of course I could be wrong and he could have been in a zen state of mind whilst writing what he wrote. This man was insistent about the dandelion that SHOULD be left there as it is.
Here in the spirit of full-disclosure I would like you all to know that I do not have pet bunnies and no wild ones walk in and out of my garden. I am not too pally with the bees or flies or the dragonflies but we let each other live out our own lives.
So by the time I got down to gathering my thoughts and writing out this blog in the evening, the pretty dandelion is still here on my patio and will remain but the man was restricted from viewing my posts and will be leaving my fb contact-list very soon.
Now here is the thing – Of-late I am usually left appalled (jaw-dropped-to-the-ground kind of appalled) with the level of judgements that many social media users throw around – without a second thought. All they see is a post and the open comment section. With the dedication of an Everest climber – they get down to the task of leaving their unsolicited views, irrespective of the fact that the person who they are leaving the comment for may not even know them or care for the views that they are leaving.
Why is it so difficult for people to follow social norms when on social media? Would people simply barge into anyone’s living room and tell the residents off, while they were expressing an opinion in their own house? Is it necessary to push your passions and views on others, without knowing their interest or views? And lastly how dare someone assume that I would not let the dandelion be? On the other hand. if I want to weed it out, how dare someone stop me from making that decision?
Here is what I believe…My sense of humour, my life, my achievements and the mountains I climb every single day … cannot be automatically understood as soon as someone connects to me on facebook/twitter/linkedin or where-ever else. And this applies to each and every one of us. I own public pages with a large following as well as lead many groups that I run to help people. There are odd friend requests that come thru these public pages/groups and I do add some of these to my social media…especially those whose names are familiar due to their online participation on my pages. They usually are restricted from viewing my personal profile and have an access to my public profile, which is a great facility provided by facebook. Sometimes I may overlook this, add someone and forget to restrict them. It does not happen often but happens nevertheless. I take this to be a work-hazard and deal with stuff, if something goes wrong, which it rarely does.
I do not know or claim to know anyone’s way of thinking and their way of life just because I am ‘facebook friends’ with them. When I have known someone for a while and we have made efforts to be friends with each other, that is when I might qualify to pass a remark on their intentions or ‘what I assume they might do to the weed’ or their life decisions, without coming across to them as judgemental or showing my ignorance about understanding the beauty of their being and their values.
But guess what? Even if I know someone well enough, I will not pass a judgement based on my assumptions.
I am not a keyboard warrior and refrain from extended tiring arguments on social media. Every one on social media has a right (and thinks has the might) to say what they want to say – I can offer my opinion to person X but I do not have to stay and argue when I know there is no space for a dialogue. I am also not inclined to give my opinion and jump in to change the world at every opportunity on a random facebook/twitter comments.
I have had enough years in my life and enough learnings to know that uninformed judgements do one job and only one job well —> that of irking the one who is being judged (this morning that irked ‘one’ was me 😡 ) and of revealing the mindset that the said judge-err carries around. Ok that was two jobs. My bad.
Being a conservationist, a vegan, an animal lover could be your calling and passion. That does not mean that all others who do not have a passion for the same do not respect life ( that of all species including plants) and need to be told-off or given life-lessons at every point your eye catches a word here or there on someone’s postings on social media. No. That is not required as you ( the judge-err <— see what I did there ? ) do not know what other person believes in or why the other person said what they said.
I know I could have let this be. Half way thru this monologue, I was actually feeling lazy…got a cup of tea…looked thru my mails and was generally very tempted not to write any more…but written down it had to be !!
Also what better time than a Tuesday evening to let out a heart-felt vent on facebook or as a change of plan demanded – on Wordspress.
Wishing you a fabulous day ahead…filled with Lots of Love & an abundance of Peace.
Picture Credit – Rachna Sharma Sirtaj
Model – A little weed called – Dandelion
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