First of all, let’s start by giving kudos to Pizza Hut on this piece of marketing genius that happens to bear with it an important message for our time: self-exposure. In dealing with any “issue”, it’s better to avoid ranting about how selfies are destroying our culture (although it’s up for debate). As an apostle, one always wants to take a step back and pull out your stethoscope: what’s going on here? What’s at the heart of it? Or better, what are people’s hearts seeking here?
A few ideas come to mind: intimacy (the safe, at-a-distance kind), communion, friendship. To be honest, its hard to say and it depends on each personal case. But, I think its worth asking: are they finding what they are looking for? I find it hard to believe.
I found a great article from Catholicherald that I would I would like to share (in part). She takes a look at “self-reflection in the age of selfies” and offers a few critical thoughts on how many have begun to self-expose themselves in some questionable ways. Citing another, she writes: “That’s modernity: The inside’s on the outside, leaving a vacuum on the inside.” I think its worth taking a look at:
“Self-disclosure is an issue every conscientious young adult grapples with. What goes on the blog and what stays in the private journal? What do you share with a close friend, a group of online followers, the World Wide Web, God? Where’s the line between self-aware and self-absorbed, between navel gazing and soul searching? Will I know when I’ve crossed it?
I find myself composing tweets in my head, a strange sort of outside-looking-in sensation that, though aimed at capturing the moment, surely hinders my ability to be in it. When it comes to my social media output, I try to evaluate my intentions and distinguish the sociable impulse from the narcissistic one. Am I making a connection or making a statement?
The Catholic Church calls us to develop the inner life, beckoning us to bend our knees, bow our heads and close our eyes, inviting us to make our confession before a priest, not a camera. It gives us tools specifically designed for self-reflection like spiritual direction and that increasingly foreign, healing prospect of the silent retreat.
In an Instagram era, these offerings feel more vital than ever. How can we still our hearts when our thumbs keep on tapping?
Pulling the plug on all social networks probably isn’t the solution for most of us. But we can turn to this month’s Scripture, St. Matthew’s account of the greatest commandments, for a litmus test on each tweet: Is it drawing on a love of self or a love of neighbor?”
… Read more here.
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