On June 2nd, 2018 (nearly 5 years ago), Angel posted this about GTribe. It still applies perfectly to our global community.
I'm often asked how I came up with the idea of a social media network featuring a Code of Conduct [aka The Code] that in its very essence encourages respect towards strangers - in hopes of transforming them into friends. My response sometimes is that I did not come up with the idea at all, I simply applied a principle of ancient Greek philosophy to our modern digital community.
The principle I'm referring to, is known as “philoxenia” - literally translated as “friend to the stranger” but with a much deeper meaning. In ancient Greece, hospitality was a value ranking highest on the list of virtues, there was great respect and honor bestowed from host to guest. And although there were ancient inns and boarding houses, they were considered lowly and a source of last resort. Most people had an organic network of contacts where a friend of a friend would show up to someone's home, and the host was dutifully bound to offer hospitality, food, drink and a bath to ensure the guest was comfortable. The guest too was bound to be courteous, polite and not burdensome to the host.
There are many mythological stories of ancient Greek gods visiting people in disguise to test their commitment to "philoxenia." One of my favorite stories is this one:
Disguised as poor travelers, Zeus and Hermes visited many villages in search of refuge for the night. Residents repeatedly turned the gods away. Everyone regarded them as uninvited guests except for a poor elderly couple—Baucis and Philemon. The couple welcomed them as guests in their home and generously served them food and wine. After refilling her guests’ cups many times over, Baucis noticed that the wine jug was still full. Philemon then realized the visitors were actually gods and offered to kill their only goose to feed them. Touched by this kind gesture, Zeus rewarded their generosity by transforming the humble cottage into a beautiful stone temple. Zeus also granted the couple their ultimate wish: to die at the same time and stay together for ever - as they were turned into beautiful trees, guarding each side of the temple’s entrance."
Our current society is rigidly built upon individualism, self-interest, and competition, and programed fear tends to block actions of sincere care towards others. By letting fear dictate our instinctive responses, we prevent our souls to be sustained by the joy of "philoxenia." As I travel the world, I can attest to the transformational power of strangers opening their homes - and sometimes offering the few things they have to make me feel welcomed. It's in that spirit that I launched GTribe, to help develop bridges of trust between people, building a 21st century global tribe — unbound by history, culture, race, gender, age, religion or politics.
Thank you for helping me transform social media from a weapon of control and toxicity, to a tool for developing close friendships between people from all over the world.
“The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other's life." - Richard Bach