Community Online and in Person

I value the relationships I have developed online. One of the great benefits of online social media is finding people who have similar interests or passions. Chances are, you would never meet these people if it weren’t for the internet.

I also value the relationships I have developed with people in the various communities I am a part of. My life has been made richer because of people who thoughtfully seek to improve other members of these communities. There is no substitute for personal, sincere relationships united around a common bond.

What is Community?

Community is a way to describe a group of people who are united in some way. Therefore, many types of communities exist. Among them are:

  • Geographical: my neighbours and I are united through our geographic location.
  • Family: my wife and children, our parents and siblings, and extended family form a community, united by our common ancestry.
  • Faith groups: the people you share a common faith or belief system with can become part of a community.
  • Special interest groups: the arts, sports, hobbies, and many other special interests can be what unites a group of people as they seek to learn and support one another.
  • Educational: Whether you like it or not, the people you study with are a part of your community, united by the pursuit of further education.

There are more communities that may come to mind. These are environments in which we exercise our need for social interactions. For some, this need is not as great as others. But, we all need it.

Consider Your Communities

Here is my challenge for you today. In addition to online communities, consider the offline communities you are a part of. How are the members of these communities supporting one another?

How are you helping others who are a part of your communities? Your neighbours, your family members, the people you worship with, the people who are a part of your community even though you would rather they not be.

You may be unaware of how much these people need you, and how much you need them. Our health as human beings depends on healthy communities.


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