Tribalism is rampant. People are disengaged from each other. It’s nearly impossible to share a different viewpoint in a way that changes someone’s mind, let alone their heart. But what if it doesn’t have to be this way?
If we go back to the earliest days of our history, when our oldest ancestors were nomadic and life was simply about survival for one’s self, family, and yes – tribe, we’ll discover something that remains true to this day. Members of your tribe were not bonded by blood. They were not even bonded by common goals (after all, these goals often put different tribes on competing, rather than cooperative, paths).
In our earliest days, bonds were built from shared experiences, from trust. They were built and cemented by stories around the fire. Why? Because shared stories created moments of empathy and shared understanding. Empathy and shared understanding led to closeness and trust, a sense of belonging.
Today, the stories we consume are primarily controlled by just a few major studios. They’re created for profit, filled with special effects, story hooks, plot holes, and formulas. Netflix, Prime TV, Disney, and others have created a firehose of content that lacks authenticity and with little more purpose than to overrun the senses and provide an escape from each other and even from ourselves. It’s no wonder that sites like TikTok and YouTube that provide a creative outlet for self-expression thrive. Yet, even these places are missing something fundamentally necessary. Meaning. Connection.
There is nowhere we can go online to experience the same sense of entertainment and connection that we hunger for on an almost genetic level. The further we have traveled from that small circle around the fire, the more elusive the experience of deep belonging, of shared understanding has become. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter – all these sites engage users in endless scrolling as they search for the moments of empathy, shared understanding, and connection that escape us. It’s because the stories there have no real meaning.
It doesn’t have to be like this. It can be different. We’ve launched NeverEnding to make it better.
NeverEnding seeks to build a new way to reignite that community fire, by creating a unique space not just to share and experience stories, but to craft them too. Through stories we can highlight our experiences, our culture, our shared humanity. Stories can be funny, dramatic, weird, amateurish – it doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter because as soon as we put real, robust, easy to use storytelling tools into the hands of everyday people, something magical can happen. We can expand that once small circle around a fire to encompass the whole world.
When we experience the simple story of a family dinner in Mumbai, we share an experience that communicates the commonality of family everywhere. When someone else in Ireland shares a story of heartbreak and then rediscovered love, we see a reflection of our own experiences. When another shares a story of adventure once told by their ancestors before a life of struggle on an American reservation, we are transported with the same sense of awe and wonderment and hope. Through these stories, we discover moments of empathy and closeness. We expand our tribe.
The world is growing, changing at an ever more rapid rate. Everywhere we look, we seem to be pulling further and further apart from one another. We’re less connected, more isolated than we ever have been. But you don’t have to feel alone. There is a better world on the horizon. NeverEnding isn’t just a story. It’s a journey, and I hope we can share it with you.
Be a part of our new tribe, so that together, we can build a better world. One story at a time.