Karissa Johnson was highlighted in the St. Paul Pioneer Press 7-22-12, as the originator of “Moms on the Run”. This organization, which was incorporated in 2011, started in 2008, when Johnson didn’t have time to workout, after having three children in four years, so she developed a running group consisting of mothers like her. Now four years later about 550 women are members at 14 different Minnesota locations.
The groups we create or may choose to join are endless, and can be very productive or they can cause disaster, mayhem, and even death. The choices we take being involved in a group can produce beneficial results, with lasting positive impacts or can have a lasting negative impact and serious consequences. On 12-26-11 the Mall of America was hit with mobs of youth, who ran through the mall, knocked displays and kiosks over, smashed things, and grabbed merchandise. The incident was labeled a “smash-and-grab” mob. See: http://www.inquisitr.com/172911/mall-of-america-brawl-spurs-smash-and-grab-mob-of-unruly-pilfering-teens/ In our history we have witnessed destructive groups such as the mass murder-suicide pact in Jonestown, 11-18-78, in which 909 Americans were led to their death by Rev. Jim Jones after Jones’ gunmen killed a U.S. visiting congressman and four others. See: http://articles.cnn.com/2008-11-12/us/jonestown.factsheet_1_jonestown-airport-ambush-leo-ryan?_s=PM:US
We also see very positive “mob” experiences, such as the Sabadell, Spain symphony flash mob. In May 2012, the people of Sabadell, Spain were treated to amazing classical music displayed in a flash mob setting, created by Banco Sabadell to celebrate their 130th anniversary. See the wonderful video at: http://biggeekdad.com/2012/06/som-sabadell-flash-mob-orchestra/ We have also seen flash mob wedding proposals on the internet, clearly helping the engaged couple to have a magical proposal memory.
Group involvement can offer support, camaraderie, fill a need, and help us grow, however it is essential to listen to our own inner voice and stay true to our own values, purpose, and goals. Whether we are joining a group for exercise, social justice, supporting a religious institution, or simply meeting like-minded people, we need to remember our own core values, our own thoughts, and be true to our own inner voice.
Moreover, any group we become a part of needs to either enhance our life or be a part of a life purpose. I believe we have many life purposes in our lifetime that help us further our growth. When we choose groups or activities that are in alignment with our values, purpose, and support our growth, society and we are enhanced. In Judaism, we are taught to repair the world (tikkun olam) synonymous with social action and the pursuit of social justice. However, it is when we do so following our own inner guide, remaining true to our core values, that we have the best chance to actually change the world for the better.
Thank-you for reading.