17 March 2009

Reason Why

This blog is an experiment.

I have a myspace and a livejournal where i share my thoughts already. Even with those blogs, i stay away from too much personal blogging. Never have i ever written a blog where i've bemoaned my life, or canvassed my week for my loyal 'readers' to know what is going on with me. (I put that in quotes because my readers are my friends, so i consider them friends first and, by far, foremost, but they are my readers.) I'm not a person who likes to share the every details of his life with people, especially the details that i would not enjoy reading.

That's my reasoning anyway. I actually enjoy reading about the lives of my friends, because it gives the illusion that i have more than a cursory connection to most of them. I realize this is hypocritical of me, not to share with my friends what consists of my life, but to enjoy reading about their lives. Part of it comes from my disinterest with writing about my life. I've already lived it, i don't need to re-live it through a blog.

With two blogs alredy under my belt (but to be honest, i need to confess that those blogs are, in all honesty, simply two venues through which to read the same blog), there is no need for a third. Really.

Yet here it is. My experiment. This is going to be a blog unlike any other i've written. This is going to be themed. No '80s night. Nothing centered around ugly articles of clothing, or television shows, or your gender. This is a blog built around language.

I fear that the language we use today has weakened, especially as followers of God. I do include myself in that. I am part of the problem as much as, if not more than, i am part of the solution. This blog is an attempt to combat that, even if only for myself. If language dies, not only does our communication with each other, but so does the communication with ourselves and with our God.

Before i can write about language, i need to get a few things out of the way about myself, or at least about myself in regards to language.

I love stories. I always will. It's part of my personality, part of my wiring. I believe the ability to create and craft stories, as well as enjoy them, is integral to what makes us human. We best learn through the use of stories, hence the fairy tale stories we hear growing up, stories infused with morals, stories that subsequently shape the way we view the world.

That is who i am. I believe in the power of language, yet i have become slightly fearful and largely annoyed with how it has been degraded and weakened. This blog will be an experiment in strengthening language.

High task, to be sure. I know i'm not up for it.

Still, i cannot stand by any longer.

Besides, it's another excuse to write.


  1. Love the idea of the blog. As you know, my wife is a teacher for the deaf and hard-of-hearing. Because many of her students' parents desire their children to be "normal," they do not want to use sign language with their children. Often, Michelle gets kids that are 5, 6, or 7 years old and have no language. There is no way to underestimate how much they have missed because their parents have handicapped them by depriving them of language.

    I say all of that to underscore this point: we experience the world to the degree in which we can describe it through language. Not only does this hold true in the physical sense, but the spiritual as well. We experience the depths of spirituality only to the degree in which we can organize our experience through language. (In the interest of full disclosure - I am also a painter and a musician, so I write this last paragraph with a bit of trepidation since we can organize experience through those mediums as well).

    I look forward to future posts.

  2. So I'm curious, you write "the language we use today has weakened, especially as followers of God?" In what way? Grammatically? (No one follows the rules!) Metaphorically? (No imagination!) Something else?

    Steven, would you consider your painting and music to be languages themselves - venues of communication with rules and vocabulary and 1st, 2nd and 3rd persons and subjects and objects all requiring great skill in their use?

  3. It the broadest sense, yes - these would be considered language. Michael's blog specifically states that he is a writer focusing on language, so I'm assuming he is referring to verbal communication. Hence, the disclaimer (though it may not have been necessary).

  4. I think this is a cool idea and myself like talking about language and it's different dynamics. I also think it's interesting that you don't like writing about the events of your day but you like reading that about your friends. Not just that fact by itself, but more that you've identified it and at least somewhat analyzed it.