Monday, February 25, 2008

plato procrastination

oh to be heard!

oh to express!

these must be some of the sentiments driving the insane number of blogs out there. mine too. is this just as meaningful a 'community'?

i could share all kinds of neat things here. or i could pontificate majestically and often. what have you. what is interesting is that those are the sorts of things we used to share more with family, neighbors, customers, teachers, children. we get to craft our audiences now, culling from the population at large the most generous, receptive audience we can find.
- you make your own home-made laundry soap with sustainable, green ingredients??? omg, me too!!!! you are sooooooo cool!
- you are trying to save money by reusing things, not buying things and cultivating overall thriftiness??? wowowowow!!! awesomes!!!
- you love to shop for makeup far too often and spend too much money when rent is due and have to live on bread and yogurt sometimes because you simply had to have a new pair of boots????? *soulmates*

the point is that, though there are some variances within these little niche communities, and though finding people with the same goals and aims as you can be really validating and really, really important, it seems, perhaps, a bit lopsided. a bit off-balance. a bit like seeing the world through a kaleidoscope and exulting in the beautiful patterns 'of the world' when you've put them there yourself.

as a student in the academy, i have the privilege of doing whatever i want most of the time (within reason, we're not talking spur of the moment trips to prague). i can read what i like, write as often as i like, spend my days rolling around in theory theory theory. i have the leisure to volunteer, to spend time with friends, to take in (cheap) chicago culture. i have no kids, no husband, no family nearby to take up my time. only me and cat.

on the other hand, without appealing to the "real world" so often spoken of, i wonder if this does not make me - like most others in other such crafted communities - a bit like a bonsai tree, or like a hothouse plant. i seem to flourish. but just how well can i actually withstand opposition - wind, changes in temperature, drought, parasites? which plant is healthier: the lush hothouse plant or the smaller, ragged outdoor one? which plant is hardier: the sheltered plant or the interdependent one?

i can craft elegant sentences. i can logically connect them and construct a balanced, meaningful and beautiful paragraph. i can recognize failures in reasoning. i can connect such failures to larger patterns of thinking. but can i withstand opposition? where reason is not recognized as an authority, to what can i appeal? where the syllogism obscures, rather than corrects, understanding, how can i speak? where events defy ordering, how can i think?

i am well-prepared for a living of thinking. but for community? this is uncertain.

confronted with those who will not listen, can i make myself heard?

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