Calvin and Hobbes, Curriculum of the Spiritual Life, Hiatus, Listening to Understand, More Enigma, Philosphy, Prayer, serial monologues and insults, The Art of Dialogue, Theologians and Philosophers, Thoughtful Dialogue
When I took a course to learn how to create a blog (this betrays my age and low technical ability), it was with eight others my age or older. Only the instructor was under 30, and happily told us how she, on her own, created her wonderful and well read blog (and it is). At the first class, she asked each person to describe the kind of blog they hoped to write. Everyone else in the class spoke cheerfully about their’s being either a travel, food, or fashion blog…
… when it came to me – the only male and second youngest in the room – I tried to describe what I was after in “More Enigma.” The instructor paused, and innocently asked, “who would read that?”
It is a good question, and I often wonder why you would grace this post.
My answer was, “probably five others on earth who think like me.” Or rather – since many do not “think like me” – I might say: “others who think – because they like to think as I like to think.” This desire to “think” came out of the realization that there was little actual thoughtful dialogue in places like Facebook or in the comment section of news articles. I decried the low-level discussion and diatribe that tend to erupt in response to “join the conversation” (a most ironic invitation which gives the illusion that serial monologues and insults pass for real “conversation”).
Anyways, I admit, my articles are often overly philosophical, filled with minutiae and dendritic pathways along a circuitous route. Each article aims to speak to the enigma of our worth, the enigma of God’s work in the world, and the enigmatic current that undercuts dogmatic world-views in a time when moderns find it increasingly more difficult to follow a train of thought longer than a seven-second soundbite. Minutiae get’s lost in marketing and yelling past each other. It’s difficult to carry on a conversation when the art of dialogue (you know: actually listening to someone else’s point of view for understanding, and responding respectfully with yours) is eroding before our eyes.
All this to say that I will be taking a hiatus from writing More Enigma during this very busy summer in order to attend to family matters and other writing projects. It is not because there is little to say; it is because there is so much to say, and I will not have the capacity this summer to give the time I need to write in “More Enigma than Dogma.”
I am reminded of cartoonist, Bill Watterson who’s Calvin and Hobbe’s cartoons were a massive hit in its day. Watterson celebrated the longer cartoons of his youth like Pogo. He delighted in dealing with deeper subjects and creative perspectives that demanded more of him than the joke-a-day single panel comic. He noted that there may be some artists who might be able to churn out a cartoon by noon in time for an afternoon golf game, while he might take an entire day, or days to finish a creation from concept through writing to completed artwork.
Far be it from me to compare my articles to Watterson’s brilliant cartoons whose title, Calvin and Hobbes, gave allusion itself to theologians and philosophers… but my blog, as you already know, isn’t a flash of travel, food, or fashion photos. There’s nothing wrong with those; it’s just not what I am interested in.
It takes me hours of research, weeks of preparation, many internal debates, several conversations with others, and numerous edits (while still managing to miss the typos and grammar mistakes) till I post something that I can reasonably defend. All the while never knowing who will read and respond.
“I’ll be Back!”
Nevertheless, I expect to be back soon enough. In the meantime, may I direct you to my “Prayer Blog” – entitled “Curriculum of the Spiritual Life.” There you will find short posts of “Poems, Prayers, & Proverbs that speak to what it means to be a living curriculum of the Christian Life.”
Grace and peace to you.