We are social beings. We thrive in the presence of others. We are comforted by our shared experiences. Many of the circumstances in our Lives can be best navigated when we are being accompanied. We will also develop our tolerances for proximity to another person based upon our previous experiences with other persons.
Most of us will live in a particular environment for a period of time, long enough for us to feel we have established ourselves there. We develop relationships with other individuals who we encounter with varying frequencies. With some, we’ll come to know their names, their histories, we may form shared memories; others we’ll treat with a more casual friendship; while with others we maintain a professional or business-like relationship. There may be any combination of interactions with these individuals who we come to realize are part of our community.
What truly defines the boundaries of our community? How do we identify the members of our community? Which are the “rules of engagement” that we agree upon? And, how is all of this decided upon? As I contemplate these questions, I can’t help but notice that they are the very foundation of Social Order, whether we are discussing us or any other species that exists as a collective of individuals.
In Nature, individuals will be assigned positions in their societies, they will perform specific tasks based upon their biology: consider the worker, the soldier, the Queen ant. Each provides a necessary function or functions for their society, for their community. Their territories may be a simple equation of nutrient sources and accommodation of the population.
Historically, we can trace the expansion of our species. We can observe the development of groups, their coalescence, their divergence. We are able to understand what combines us and what divides us. We recognize our common needs and our shared beliefs regarding ourselves and the Universe that we inhabit. The wider our vision, the broader our communities become.
Are you a “Member” of the individuals that you encounter? How do you define your community? How do you treat the other members of your community? I think that most of us would agree that it feels better when we are kind, compassionate and cooperative than when we are not. It is easier to accomplish almost anything cooperatively than competitively. What could be wrong with helping someone in need, as well as accepting assistance when we find ourselves in need?
Practically, it seems that our efforts can be more impactful on a local level. Yet, it would also appear that we can keep an eye on persons and events Worldwide and even make a difference there, perhaps the genesis of, “Think Globally, Act Locally.” How present are we in our actions and thoughts? What might be the impact of these? If we consider the latter question whenever we think or act, we will make a difference.
Community just seems like a good choice for survival. Still we must consider that a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. If we are holding together through our challenges, are we forming common bonds that will persist beyond this moment? What will these bonds say about us collectively and individually? I am grateful to those members of my community who have inspired me with their Strength, as well as their Kindness, Compassion and Cooperation. I Thank You. Be in Peace.