First posted at Community of Christ, Scientist
Most of us have heard of the dangers of social media and internet addictions.
A new book, published 2022, author Bradley Staffens discusses this problem in the book, The Dark Side of Social Media.
The book is short and yet gives plenty of examples of how social media “tears at the fabric of society.” The information is, well, rather dark.
Very briefly, the subjects of enacting policies to restrict social media, and, treatment for those who are addicted, are addressed.
I’d like to address mental treatment from the standpoint of divine Spirit in control. From the standpoint of light, or enlightenment, being more real, more powerful than darkness.
I’ve started with what I know to be true. Many, perhaps millions of people, know and use the internet properly, for connecting with friends, for work, for school, for violin lessons, or for sharing ideas about a God of love.
A common thought behind this conflict between light and dark is that human beings have free-will.
Let’s take a look at free-will, as a theory. Defined as, the capacity to choose or act the way we want to, independently of natural or divine restrictions.
The history of free-will began, say three thousand years ago, with philosophers, who analyzed the complex issues of human desires and choices.
A thousand years ago, about twelve-hundred years after Christ Jesus lived, a churchy guy, Thomas Aquinas, began attaching this philosophical theory of free-will, to Christian theology.
In other words, the theory of free-will, didn’t begin with Christian theology.
And because, no matter how many laws or policies or internet restrictions are invented, people still find a way to become addicted.
So, I wonder, what the heck?
If we’re created in the image and likeness of God, does that mean God has free-will? Does that mean God randomly chooses to behave nefariously or act as an addict?
Well, those questions are answered when I mentally get my facts straight.
God isn’t the image and likeness of human beings.
God is Spirit, Love.
So, contrary to what my limited physical senses say is true, our true nature is the image and likeness of spirit and love.
From the Bible, I John, “For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world. 17 And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.”
I think that free-will is better defined as the desires of the flesh.
Whereas, the will to do right by our true spiritual selfhood and by humanity, is the will that remains.
It’s not easy, doing the will of God, making rules to guide the vulnerable to freedom, using self-control to help humanity rather than harm humanity, loving our self and others the way Christ loves. But it’s possible.
The will of God. It’s ours. It’s free.