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Respecting Your Online Data Privacy: a spiritual perspective

You might be wondering why we are writing about online data privacy and protecting your rights to free speech. After all you may think it’s not related to spirituality and meditation. But we’re going to share with you some spiritual insights that will help you see the connection. We will also share with you some easy ways you can protect your own freedom and privacy.

We are a not-for-profit group on a mission to share the benefits of spirituality and meditation freely with everyone. To make our resources available to you we use social media, organic SEO and other online resources. We do all this work to raise awareness because people can only benefit from something if they know about it.

“As Above, So Below”

The concept of “as above, so below” means that everyday life is potentially a reflection of higher spiritual principles. As spiritual teachers we share the understanding that that there is just one limitless and unconditionally loving thing everywhere. What some people refer to in spiritual terms as The Source, enlightenment or God. The spiritual journey of meditating on light actually allows you to find out for yourself if this is true.

To be congruent with these higher ideals we must therefore demonstrate them in how we conduct ourselves in everyday life. This includes how we build our website so it provides support free from limits and respectful towards you and your data privacy.

Supporting Your Right to Data Privacy

Because we respect you and your rights it is our duty to offer spiritual guidance in a way that is also unlimited, unrestricted and respectful. This extends to choosing appropriate platforms and technology in order to provide our website, emails and resources, while protecting your data privacy.

Our Data Privacy Commitment to You

Respecting your right to enjoy exploring meditation and spirituality without censorship or limitations.
Supporting your right to do so privately, without big brother spying on you or your data privacy being compromised.
Making our teachings and resources free and easy to access and share with others.

Why Respect Matters

At the heart of our teachings are The Six Virtues which include the idea that we should respect ourselves, others and the planet. When making our website, videos, podcasts and other free resources we try our best to find ethical options that respect you and your data privacy.

Is Facebook Safe?

There are growing concerns about Facebook’s conduct with respect to freedom of speech, data privacy and political agenda.

An alternative to Facebook

We have created a private group and public page on MeWe giving you an alternative to facebook. MeWi is a popular social platform similar to facebook but without mass data gathering, adverts and data privacy abuse.

Is Google Watching Your Every Move?

Websites using Google Analytics provide detailed information on every page viewed on a website allowing Google to monitor your activity and behaviour.

They can also track you as you move to other websites building a complex profile of you helping advertisers target you. Google does this by having a small piece of google analytics code embedded into every web page. When you click on a page then that page talks to Google and gives them lots of personal information about you including location, browser type, screen size and much more.

If you happen to be logged into any Google product at the time then they may get even more information because they would then know who you are!

Website owners use Google Analytics to gain rich behavioural, geographic and demographic data. This rich analytics data helps them with their marketing, but really it is Google who wins because they then sell information about you to advertisers.

Ethical alternatives to Google

is Google tracking you

We removed all google analytics from our website. When you are on our website Google is not able to track you and what you look at and what you click on is your business. We place your privacy first and do not track you.

We do store a tiny bit of information so that we know how many times a page is clicked on each day and where referrals come from. But we don’t store any information about users and we don’t even know which country you are in.

So on our website you can have peace of mind because big brother can’t spy on you. As it should be. We use a small plugin called “Koko analytics” which respects data privacy. It means no data is sent to any third parties and nothing personal is stored about you.

respect data privacy

OpenSource/Free Alternatives

As discussed above we are moving away from Facebook and have stopped using Google Analytics altogether. Additionally we use and endorse OpenSource and free alternatives to products and services provided by large corporations. Below we share the alternative free or OpenSource (FOS) options we use. Please note other options may be available and we are not sponsored by any of these companies.

OpenSource & Pro Privacy Website:

Website Engine: WordPress
Website Analytics: Koko Analytics
In Site Search: Ivory Search (not Google)
Donations: PayPal

Life Beyond Microsoft

Operating System: POP!_OS (a variant of Ubuntu)
Office Suite: LibreOffice / OpenOffice
Compression: 7-Zip
Media player: VLC

Get Creative Without Adobe

Screen Capture: Vokoscreen
Audio Editing: Audacity
Video Editing: Lightworks
Photos & Graphics: GiMP

Ditch Google and Reclaim Privacy

Browser Search Engine: Duck Duck Go or Ecosia
Web Browser: TOR or Firefox
Maps: openstreetmap and umap for custom maps

Data Security / Privacy

Hard drive cleaner: BleachBit

Communication

Video conferencing: Jitsi
Secure messenger app: Signal

Mark Zaretti Meditation teacher

“We have to balance accessibility with ideals. At this time removing our facebook presence would make it hard for people to find and share our resources. We hope in time more people will use alternative social sites that respect privacy and then we can stop using facebook. For now we support your right to choose by providing as many options as possible.”

– Mark Zaretti

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