I’ve blogged off and on for a couple of years. I had dabbled at times before that but never much of anything and always short-lived and fairly half-hearted. I just never saw much purpose in it. It seemed to me as though the internet was littered with millions of bloggers; all basically writing to themselves. I still feel much of the collective blogging world to be more self-journaling than exchange with others. But I’ve also grown to give much more value to this in my own life. I have grown to enjoy much of what blogging has to offer me. Sometimes a pretty cool exchange of ideas and positions with others (increasingly less often). At other times, just a place to note some passing thoughts or impressions, expend some creative energy, or even vent about substantial concerns or simple pet peeves. I haven’t written as much lately as my mind has been heavily occupied with life and all related items. Perhaps an odd subset of thoughts for me have pertained to thought, itself. Specifically, the seemingly dwindling appetite many seem to demonstrate for conclusive thought. The process of considering an issue in a balanced and reasonable manner so as to reach a conclusion, for the purpose (& this is key) of having a position on the issue and growing from it. Be it political, spiritual, or whatever – there seems to be less-and-less desire to cultivate and foster good thought. This may just be my view but many I speak with have shared similar impressions. Interestingly, many of these individuals also, lean on the same primary reasons for this perceived decline. That being the increasing personal use of technology to serve as a buffer for personal interaction and the decreasing [personal] value for spirituality and issues pertaining to faith. This resonates with me as having substance; as least in considerable part.
“Common sense is not so common” – Voltaire
What many technological resources may offer is oftentimes not what they are used for. I believe people are more often using online forums, e-mail, blogging, social networks, and the like as a technological façade to create and maintain relational distance with others while giving the appearance of real relationship, by still being able to keep tabs on other aspects of interaction. I believe the pervasive use of these technologies to interact further exacerbates the decline in substantial thought; as it encourages greater personal isolation while promising greater accessibility to foster interaction. This is akin to a mass relational ‘retreat’ whereby individuals become increasingly individualistic, in every aspect of their lives. Relationship means the presence of different wills with requisite differing needs, dreams, goals, and desires. As we pull away from others relationally, we further destroy the habitat that real relationship with others naturally encourages. That being an environment that forces us to consider other views. This conflict of interests mandates our having to constantly expand or own worlds, as we make these considerations to live in peace and grow with those around us – a good thing.
It is the pursuit of personal and spiritual growth and understanding that forces us to consider much beyond the practical aspects of living. Having to consider such substantially pronounced issues surrounding life, its meaning / purpose / etc – necessarily takes us into much deeper waters than for instance contemplating how to make more money or a longer lasting light bulb. Considering existence and all that implies mandates the review of the moral, the ethical, and all things right-and-wrong. As well as the consideration of truth … is it relative … absolutes and do they exist. I believe many have sadly and mistakenly grown to see these lines of thought as pointless because they don’t necessarily answer questions of how to get that promotion or provide some form of immediate and simple entertainment. They perhaps miss altogether, that these lines of thought serve as the building blocks of the very foundations of who we are and how we live. They serve to define and establish what is important to us and why it is important. They define and establish what we believe and why we believe it. This impacts every decision we make and thus, has everything to do with the quality of our lives on every level.
I simply, want to encourage the practice of thought. To take an idea, issue, or concern and review it, balance it with any available information for the purpose of reaching a conclusive position about it. Whatever the position reached, the process can yield wonderful things by way of expanding our individual perspectives. Allowing us to see other areas of consideration in a broader view. This can grow healthy and much needed objectivity that can in-turn help us to see ourselves more honestly – thereby promoting yet, more growth and development. Without healthy and substantial thought, we become stagnant and static as human beings. Lacking in both fresh perspective and the ability to cultivate it.