Loquacious

I joined the Pagan Blog Project late in the year, in the hopes that it would encourage me to interact more with other Pagans online.  One week in, and I’m reminded of how Pagans and blogging don’t really work well together:  Pagans are a wordy bunch.

There are many good reasons to be wordy.

  • Our religious experiences defy written description, so we write more to compensate.
  • Philosophical exploration generally not for the terse at heart.
  • Subtle distinctions of meaning tend to encourage more words, to increase clarity.
Up until now, religious movements have evolved without benefit of the internet.  Long treatises found their way to letter, scrolls, and weighty tomes; they were argued, dissected, and explored.  Words were not cheap to distribute.  But now they are, so those discussions, in which people argue passionately about topics ranging from the nature of the gods to the meaning of gender, happen online, collaboratively, in great depth.
Except . . . 
Except this isn’t what blogging is particularly good for.  Blogs, at their best, are short and focused; a good rule of thumb is that the reader of a post shouldn’t have to page down.  On the fast-paced internet, short and punchy, backed up by links to more info, is the way to go.
Except that Paganism is an experienced religion, not a revealed one, so the amount of time Pagans take to read and write these lengthy posts about being Pagan takes away from their time to simply be Pagan.

This post is part of the Pagan Blog Project, a yearlong exploration of spirituality.  This specific post is brought to you by the letter L.

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2 thoughts on “Loquacious

  1. I completely disagree. Why? Because I am always a pagan. It's not something that I turn off and back on. It's my spirituality, my religion, and who I am. Everything I do, I do as a pagan.

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  2. It's an interesting point. I'm certainly not saying that exploring religion through writing isn't a worthwhile tool, or that I haven't benefited from it.

    But lengthy forum and blog posts don't receive the same audience a book might, because it's just not a good platform for that sort of writing. And I don't think most Pagans seek out the experience of a flame war, but the internet provides them anyway.

    So yes, I am a Pagan as I drive, and eat, and sleep, and blog. But if a good portion of my life is spent being a Pagan by communicating in ways that are 1) inefficient and/or 2) polarizing, it seems like I am diluting the experience.

    Thank you for your disagreement — am I the only one who learns more from contrast than comparison? I also tend to think more on ideas and revisit them later, and your point is likely to nibble at me for a good, long time.

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