As a general rule, I find the online world of Twitter informative and useful. I learn much and – above all – engage with some lovely people. But there are times when that all changes; and this present moment seems to be one of those times.
Fuelled by recent world events such as the Presidential Election in the United States, massive rifts have become more evident than they usually are – and, as I have written about previously, there is that especially toxic and incestuous mix of politics and religion, producing a poisonous and foul-smelling froth which is anything but Christian.
The trouble is, it is almost impossible to go onto Twitter and successfully avoid that froth. Like most similar froths, it produces odour and heat, but very little light. This makes it very hard to try to engage in debate without finding oneself falling outwith the bounds of charity.
I remind myself that people each have their own views and are very welcome to do so, even when I don’t share them; and my views are certainly not shared by everyone. And I tell myself that even those who may voice opinions I don’t share, do so from a motive of belief; and they are good and decent people.
But then I read a little more and wonder if I am incredibly niaive.
And it is in that moment that I decide to step back from it all, at least for a while, at least until things are a little less heated, at least until emotions cool.
I have now ‘protected’ one account, having already removed a number of people who were following it; and this, not simply because I did not share their views, but because those views were scarily based outwith fact (most often, regarding the election) and deeply lacking in any civility or charity. I simply don’t wish to read this; it isn’t why I am here. For the sake of my interior peace and my own sense of charity – and my blood pressure – a little break was necessary.
Sometime soon, I will begin to ‘lurk’ again and peek in to see what is happening. Eventually I will post again. But not yet.
Right now, for me, there is a need for calm.