August 04, 2009

A Buddhist's Guide to Twitter

As someone slow to embrace the Twitter phenomenon, I've approached the site with great caution, and perhaps a touch of suspicion. I often wondered if I could use Twitter without falling victim to my ego and shamelessly indulging in detailing the ins-and-outs of my day, giving a digital voice to my inner monologue. Determined not to be the last person on earth who wasn't "tweeting," I did some research and found the advice of Soren Gordhamer especially helpful. In a recent Huffington Post blog post "If the Buddha Used Twitter..." Gordhamer suggests 5 ways in which the Buddha might have approached Twitter, reminding us that it's not what we tweet but how we live away from our online worlds that really matters:

On Twitter, it is easy to tweet about how wise and wonderful we are, and few people (minus our mom or partner if they are users) know to the extent we actually live this. I think the Buddha would say that it is fine to share accomplishments, but the real question is not what we say but how we live -- both when tweeting, but also in challenging times: in dealing with an angry neighbor, a pushy boss, or a rude customer. He would discourage using Twitter to brand and market oneself, tweeting only things that show us in a particular light. The purpose is not to be appealing to the Twitterverse, but to live with mindfulness and compassion, whether such actions ever get tweeted about it or not.

With Gordhamer's advice in mind, I just might be ready to make the Twitter leap.

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A Buddhist’s Guide to Twitter | Awake in This Life's picture

[...] Hiles comments on her twitter reluctance over at Tricycle in a post called  A Buddhist’s Guide to Twitter. As someone slow to embrace the Twitter [...]