On Blogging

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Blogs

December 3, 2010

I have to admit I feel little bad about my comments on Paul's most recent post below.  He offered a light hearted reflection on how we can complain about 'problems' most people would like to have.  The post triggered a history of comments I have heard (and made) over time.  I responded critically.  I do not feel bad about responding critically but I do feel bad that my reason for blogging and responding may not be clear.  I read blogs only when I feel I can learn substantially <i>or</i> when I feel there is the opportunity for a rigorous exchange of views and approaches.  Blogs are not primarily 'social networks' for me, though they are social.  In this way I would like to state my approach to blogging up front.  I hope to offer posts that I think people, particularly the Mennonite church, would benefit from engaging in.  And I respond to posts because I feel it is important to challenge, clarify and support things being said.  There are many blogs I read where people start coming off as 'jerks' because they keep pushing people on a point of clarification or criticism.  I hope this space can emerge where such conversations are valued (along with other approaches to conversations) and not rejected for the challenges such exchanges can make on us.

For interests sake I would be curious to hear the other main blog contributors post on their hopes and intentions for this space.

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Sometimes I pay attention to religious themed news and sometimes I pay attention to the news through religious coloured lenses. I try to write articles that inform people of issues that arise, persuade people with fair and reasonable arguments and opinions, and entertain people with witty banter. Spelling it out like that makes me sound a little full of myself, but that's what I try to do, and until I am told otherwise I'll write as though I'm sorta doing that.

I think my blogging is a chance to articulate thoughts related to the church and faith that I've had in my life experiences, studies, or reading. I hope that my sharing will prompt others to think about similar topics or questions, or to pay attention to experiences in their own lives.

I also think there's a place for "social" and relational connections through writing, as writer and reader in the creation process, and through actual comments on the page.

Critical thinking can be helpful sometimes, and there are other ways of thinking with creativity, imagination, and appreciation which can illuminate new perspectives and encourage one another.

Thanks for bringing this up!

Thanks for the initial comments. Most of the blogs I read and engage with are ones where you have to 'watch your back' in the sense that people will call you out on anything you are not clear and convinced about. This makes for good critical processing but can also be very intimidating and even unnerving at times. It finally dawned on me that perhaps this is not the sort of engagement that many or most of the people that read this site are looking for. Hopefully this space can continue to develop and integrate critical and charitable encounters.

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