Reflections upon Hope, Jerusalem and a Global Internet Village.
City has become home to many and technology its prime utensil. Some suggest we shall no longer live in cities but rather a Global Village. Being optimistic and hopeful, can we experience yet another revolution, a newer phase to this industrial expansion?
Yes, in the lights and shadows of these contemporary changes we can be hopeful. The H.O.P.E Organization (High-Or Partnership Enterprises) is developing an enriched understanding of the relationship between urban structure and urban person, between technology and enlightenment.
Contemporary change is harping a new song. We are making waves and movements upon the tensions between wilderness and city, between family and larger society, between value consensus and value pluralism. In the Middle East a HOPE Enterprise Partner called Academy of Jerusalem is surely and slowly becoming a major node in intuiting the paths and rhythms of peacefulness. The historical role of Jerusalem in the making of the Global Village has just opened a Pandora's Box. More on that subject latter.
On the other side of the globe some fifty years ago Homer A. Jack, Secretary general of the World Conference on Religion and Peace had this to say:
- "Chicago is the youngest of the world's greatest cities. Founded in 1833, Chicago grew to [become by 1950] the sixth largest city in the world. Chicago architect and planner, Daniel H. Burnbam said,
- Make no little plans . . .
- Make big plans;
- aim high in hope and work,
- remembering that a noble and logical diagram
- once recorded will never die,
- but long after we are gone will be a living thing
- asserting itself with growing intensity.
- It has mirrored the social problems and growth of America . . . What other city, for example, could change the direction of a large river? . . . Indeed, the name Chicago comes from the Indian name for that river, meaning strong and powerful.
- After the early Indians came the French explorers, then the Easterners and then European immigration; Scandinavian, Dutch, Polish, Lithuanian, Bohemian, Croatian and Greek settlements. Then came the Negroes, Japanese, Mexicans and Puerto Ricans.
- It has been these people, from all nationalities, from all religions, with all kinds of names who have given Chicago its brains . . . who have made Chicago an exciting town.
Chicago was and is a great city, a microcosm of our rapidly changing world."
Questions begin humming a contemporary theme; where does the explorer go now that all earthly frontiers have been breached? How does one shape a life and preserve individuality in the face of rampant impersonal technology?
An awareness of a plausible golden age whether situated in the present, past or future will depend upon the story we choose to tell. At present Internet, the revolutionary vehicle in advanced communications, allows information based collaborative groups to meet, discuss, survey and explore the new frontier. Almost suddenly a large portion of Humankind has found a way to freely associate without government or controllers.
People have discovered a medium to realize an old but futuristic hope. A collective mind or intelligence that thinks and feels, it reacts instantly and evolves as if living on some higher plane. Yet the web of communicating and interacting associations are us, people, present where ever we are. The rate of growth of new comers to the web network of communicators and there resulting actions has created the largest connected population of people in the world within the time frame of two decades. What we call this population and where we conceive its borders is integral to our future.
- We are the actors and we are the audience. The script is play, it is story and mime. The show is theatre, academy and temple. Work has become play, it is central to our lives. Let's imagine for a moment, a person rising up from the audience and striding forward to those pushing and pulling at centre stage. Delivering a concise message this performer catches our attention,
- "Choose any role but direct no performer."
- This message still upon that person's lips and already our own voices have echoed and rumbled in that person's limbs, throat and ears.
- "Why?! That voice is so near. So, this is the rumble coming from our collective epicenter!"
The HOPE organization is at present alive on the Internet. Enterprise Partners like the Academy of Jerusalem have made and are currently formulating several diagrams or proposals for organizing free associations for any member or group joining us. We are physically and metaphorically based in Jerusalem and are the collaborative group populating a new neighborhood in the Global Village that we can begin to call HOME.
First Published May 1997 at TheHOPE.org