It’s a good question, especially now, after only two posts in the last four weeks. I began blogging at the suggestion of my good friend Ali Tabibnejad, a fellow philosopher. Together we launched “The UM Philosophy Society Blog” just after my graduation. Then I went off to England and the blog faded, though not without some wit and insight into the lives of two newly graduated philosophers.
I immediately began my own blog (this one) but posted very little, as I was in transition (as I am now!) to moving to England for academic studies. Once settled in England I created “American Buddhist in England” to journal my adventures, beginning with this simple summary post. Oh, how I could go on and on about life in England and how amazing it was – just read the posts 🙂 It has a very special place in my heart, to say the least…. but that’s not what this post is supposed to be about.
The question is… why? And certainly I haven’t answered that.
1) To “concretise myself in the world,” Sartre would say; to “get myself out there,” I might say. We all need to have ourselves ‘felt’ in the world, to find outlets, to share in a safe way. In this way blogging is simply an extension of myself as a person interacting with an ever-changing world.
2) To clarify. I have kept a paper journal since I was in high school. I have used it for everything from tracking diet and exercise to chronicling my depression and most profound philosophical thoughts. Now I have this. Granted, this is public so I censor myself a bit here and there, but for the most part this has taken over for my journaling. I find that simply sitting down and blurting out the thoughts that keep bouncing ’round my head brings them all together into a manageable form.
3) To remember. I get almost weepy-eyed when I look back on some of those old posts. For instance, in this one from Bristol I describe an early dinner with some “Indian students.” One of those was Soorjya, who I hear now is getting married in December!!! 🙂 Aaaaannndddd I’m invited! Actually, both me and my “new found love” (Kelly! – the first official link to her blog from mine! hehe…) are invited, as is our other great friend from Bristol, Saijie (SJ). In a perfect world the three of us could unite in London and fly to Calcutta together for…. wait, I’m getting off topic 🙂 Anyhow, you see what I mean!
So many of those old blog posts hold little nuggets of the beautiful, amazing life I am blessed to be walking through. Others hold bits of sorrow and unhappiness, reminding me to be thankful for the good times and to know that the difficult ones will pass.
4) To share. I really have come to believe that life must be lived as an act of service. Oftentimes, when something gets me all giddy or throws me for a loop, just turning my thoughts to the fact that others may benefit from my experience, to share in my joy or to sympathize with my troubles, helps me maintain that center of service in my life. Ultimately I hope to live that service fully and spontaneously, with joy and sympathy of my own as my own life’s worries fall away and I am more able to work for the benefit of others directly. I take teaching and writing to be gifts I can use to help humankind, and so here I am, honing that writing a bit here and there, sharing what I can.
Anyhow, I suppose I blog for many of the same reasons as others. But I’m reminded a bit of a Buddhist teaching that urges the listener not to search too much for ‘why’ and miss out on the ‘doing’ side of things!