Friday, May 1, 2009

Read - Write - Blog - Twit

Boiled eggs are pretty marvellous, aren't they. One is boiling now. This gives me some space to write this.

Blogs have changed since I was last writing one very much (andsothisischristmas). A lot of the social function that they held for me has been mopped up by Facebook, and now I am involving myself with the even newer kid on the block, Twitter. So communicating little bits to my friends - this is a realm that blogging no longer monopolizes.

But blogs retain something unpossessed by social networking sites - the possibility of writing at length, of analysis, of giving flesh to thoughts (or rather, producing 'enfleshed thoughts').

This is good, I feel. It is good because I find that accessing the internet - and I do love being connected to the matrix - always involves the risk of being wholly drawn into the orbit of numb-brained reactivity. You know it - refresh this feed aggregator, look at Facebook, check The Age online, look at Twitter again, check email, scroll up, scroll down, refresh, find tidbit, send tidbit, refresh...

Whereas writing a blog gives thought a moment to distill, to coalesce, to become less flimsy than wind. Writing involves a discipline. And certainly, most of the time spent writing is silence, waiting for thoughts to come from 'within', rather than from the matrix. There can be something meditative about this - but also 'ennabling' (to use a disgusting word that makes me sad because I cannot at present find another). I am thinking here of Spinoza - of how what is good for us increases our activity. Social networking sites are inciters of reactive, passive states. Hypnosis is what I am often put in mind of, when spending any time 'on' these sites as opposed to simply 'checking' them.

(Does writing allow thought? Is writing thought? I don't know where thinking happens. Sometimes it happens in the head, perhaps while out walking. But my head isn't very resonant, it isn't sonorous enough to allow thoughts to resound properly. Which is why I feel I need writing, lest everything become conflated and repetitious.)

So this post is a little love note to my favourite blogs. It is also an announcement that I am coming back, slowly, to the world of writing and thought.

What is that line from Nietzsche again - ? Once everyone can write, we will forget how to read? Or is it the other way around?

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