Wednesday Word: The Reality of Information
“Information has come to define reality.” Quoted from Being Digital in The Unbearable Wholeness of Being, by Ilia Delio, p. 160
I'm currently in Chapter 9 of this book about how God and evolution are intertwined, and this chapter has to do with how evolving technology is shaping our lives and our world. As I read through it, I couldn't help but think of movies like, The Matrix and Surrogates, or the Star Trek episodes, “The Gamesters of Triskelion” and, “Return to Tomorrow,” among others, where physical bodies have been replaced through technological evolution.
And while the chapter focuses on how humanity and technology are intertwined and adapting together, this short sentence got me thinking about the environment in which we are currently living.
We are now living in a world where disinformation, alternative facts, and conspiracy theories have become mainstream. People no longer even pretend to care about the actual truth, they simply spout blatant lies and conspiracy theories so loudly and so often that people eventually take them as truth. Planes full of black-robed armed militia coming to take away your freedoms, political parties and agencies that actively work to kidnap children into sex trafficking rings, Q-Anon conspiracies of an international cabal of satanic-worshiping baby eaters, and more, have entered regular conversations.
The thing is that these unfounded conspiracies and outright lies have been stated, repeated, and spread through the internet so often that they have begun to pass for fact and taken as normal. This “information” has come to define reality for many, many people.
The one thing I've noticed about all of these conspiracy theories and lies is that they are based in fear – fear of losing property, fear of losing status, fear of losing a way of life, fear of just about anything new and everything different.
But as Christians, we are called to live beyond fear. As Christians we are called to love our neighbors as ourselves and respect the dignity of every human being. As Christians we are called to welcome the stranger, the outsider, and work for justice and peace. As Christians we are called to live in love, not fear. As Christians we are called to recognize that which is fearful and hateful and call it out for what it is: antichrist.
As things heat up, pay attention to the information you are paying attention to. Are you letting that information define your reality? At the very least, we should be asking ourselves how the information we're being fed aligns with the life of Christ. And we should probably do a lot of research.
We can either be defined by the information and reality of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, a life and death based in love; or we can be defined by misinformation and alternative realities that are based in fear.