Many of us don’t realize how truly unique each of us is. DNA molecules can unite in an infinite number of ways. The number is 10 to the 2,400,000,000th power. The number is the likelihood that you’d ever find someone just like you. If you were to write out that number with each zero being one inch wide, you’d need a strip of paper 37,000 miles long!
To put this in perspective, some scientist have guessed that all the particles in the universe are probably less than 10 with 76 zeros behind it, far less than the possibilities of our individual DNA. Our uniqueness is a scientific fact of life.
Our uniqueness is what creates variety in human interactions. So with such uniqueness what common characteristics bring us together? The human makeup can be categorized into four elements: 1) Intellectual, 2) Physical, 3) Emotional and 4) Spiritual. Our life experiences shape each of our four elements and together with our DNA we become defined. Collectively our elements represent the gifts and abilities of life we have both the good and bad that we ultimately share with others through exchanges and future experiences.
When we enter the virtual world we do so with the history and experience in human relations of our physical world. What and whom we associate with tends to follow form of our physical world thus creating our technological DNA of affinities. Our personality will affect how and where we use our gifts and abilities within virtual communities. For instance, two people may have similar intellectual knowledge and experiences but if one is introverted and the other is extroverted, that intellectual knowledge will be expressed differently.
The more we participate within virtual worlds the more pronounced our technological DNA and virtual personalities become. Like stained glass, our different personalities reflect different shades of light within virtual communities. Our virtual life takes on different shapes as we begin to express ourselves to others individually and collectively through the groups we participate in. Our virtual life also takes shape based on what groups we belong to and whom we are connected. Our physical life is shaped by our physical world experiences of the past. In determining our shape within the virtual world one should consider what they desire for experiences in the future.
The physical life experiences we bring into our virtual life include:
- Family experiences: what did we learn?
- Educational experiences: what subjects interest us the most?
- Vocational experiences: what jobs have we been most effective in and enjoyed most
- Spiritual experiences: what have we learned from our own spiritual walk?
- Community experience: what have you learned from and about providing service to communities?
- Painful experiences: what problems, hurts, thorns and trials have we learned from? What has these experiences taught you that others may benefit from learning from and through you?
The virtual world human factor connects people where they are and provides the means to help individuals gain from others for the purposes of getting to where they would like to be. The essence of community in the virtual world is helping others learn, connect, gain and exchange in meaningful ways not unlike our physical world but the technological medium extends our reach and enables richness of relations.
Social networks enable individuals to leverage their human factors for the benefit of others thus creating a giving exchange that provides enrichment. This feature is one of the factors that create attraction for individuals to participate within social networks. The technological medium has accelerated individual abilities to reach more people than we ever could in the physical world. This new reach extends the promise of satisfaction through human relations which enriches human experiences of giving, sharing, learning, relating and re-enforcing or improving ones identity.
Our virtual world can either extend current factors in our human relations in the physical world or create new opportunities for us to improve the factors for ourselves and those we are connected to, both physically and virtually.
What say you?