I’m having a crisis of belief.
Not concerning my faith in God or Christian conviction. Those are more or less secure.
No, this crisis has to do with something a thousand times more trivial. My belief in blogging. Judging from the infrequency with which I go at it around here, I’ve been at best a nominal believer for quite some time. I suppose the problem for me is fundamentally one of who is this blog for? Is it for my close family and friends to know what I’m thinking about? If so, then maybe there are better ways of communicating that to them. Is it to cast my voice into the echoing chambers of the world wide web? Plenty of people are out doing that and doing it better than I could ever hope. Or is it a place for me to scribble down some thoughts in an effort to organize them in a semi-coherent fashion? In which case, wouldn’t I be better served to simply keep a private journal? You (whoever ‘you’ is) are probably noticing my tendency to over-think things, which is probably why I’ve landed where I have geographically, vocationally, and blogographically.
I’m hoping that this brief post will help to break the log jam and get things flowing with greater consistency on my tiny corner of the internet. Since I’m currently up to my neck in a Protestant Reformational atmosphere, I’m going to lay it out in Luther-like theses fashion. Or for those how are a little more left-leaning, consider it a blogging manifesto of sorts.
1) I will seek to connect with people I care about and those who care about what I have to say. Ultimately, this blog is for others. If it weren’t, then like I said, a journal would suit just fine. Whether it is a close friend, an interested stranger, a future descendant, this blog will be a place where you have access to me. A dis-embodied me for sure, but if nothing else the part of me that I allowed to present itself to the internet. Which leads to the next thing…
2) I will be less self-conscious about what I put other there. This is the thing that cripples my blogging. I know you would have a hard time guessing that from the the inane crap I’ve allowed to inhabit the megabytes of this forum. And yet, for whatever reason, I have a hard time pressing the ‘publish’ button. Don’t misunderstand me, I’m not saying that this is going to turn into some ‘confess all’ around here. I’m not about to pander to the voyeuristic mentality that permeates all of social media. I don’t think that being ‘authentic’ gives me liberty to blast everyone with all the garbage of my life. No, I’ll continue to make an effort to present my best self. In so doing, I’ll recognize that my best self ain’t all that great. And then I’ll resolve to be ok with my not so great best self.
3) I will not publicize every post on twitter and facebook. I know that facebook and twitter are how lots of people get to this blog. That it is precisely how many of you know anything new has gone up. But the curse of social media is that it gets broadcast to so many people. Part of being less self-conscious about the whole blogging thing for me will be a move towards not caring if one other person reads this or not. If you don’t want to miss out on one ounce of Square Pegs, you’ll need to email sign up on the right somewhere, use an RSS feed (I use Feedly), or on your own schedule go to the trouble of typing… taidochino.com
4) Not every post will be theology related. Believe it or not, I do have interests that fall outside the bounds of half-formed theological thoughts. Usually it has to do with my very narrowly prescribed taste in music. But…
5) It is ok for some, if not most, posts to be theological in nature. I don’t really think blogs are a fantastic place to hash out theology. But in as much as I want this to be a place where friends and interested parties gather to discuss things, I won’t want to shy away from making an effort to engage in casual theological conversations. In that sense, it will be like a dinner party. I don’t mind having the conversation, but I don’t want to spend too much time dwelling on one topic or just talking to one person all evening. That would be rude. Speaking of rude…
6) I will try to be good natured. I don’t tend to like blogs (including my own) when they get overly critical and mean. As I’ve seen on many a t-shirt and bumper sticker, “mean people suck.” I should also mention that none of these bullet points are meant to be a critique of anyone else’s blog, their motives or practices. This is all about how I’m going to keep this from turning into a place I dread coming to.
7) I won’t be a perfectionist. I just won’t have the time to edit every post that goes up. If poor grammar, typos, and the like, are going to be problematic, then as in the immortal words of Uncle Rico, “you can leave.” Along with this, speed will be of the essence. I’m painfully aware that this will reduce the quality of what is already substandard writing, but I guess at the end of the day I think this blog should be about connecting to normal people in a normal sort of way.
I should probably have more points here, but in the spirit of keeping things moving along, it is time to click “publish.” Feel free to add your own.