I have recently pondered the purpose of this blog and whether I should feel the obligation to continue it. Although I do not feel an obligation to a readership base, there is frequently a lingering thought that I should regularly create and post content. Perhaps this is the result of neural pathways that have been constructed resulting from dopamine released when I see views, likes and comments, or the slight adrenaline released when I debate with the friendly folks at the Orthosphere and the troll that has taken a fancy to my blog. There is also the sense that this blog feeds my need to be creative and strengthens my creative muscle.
But there is also the sense that I have something to say regarding my perception of this world. I have many thoughts, reactions and impressions, but until I write them down they are typically not in their most organized and coherent form. The act of writing works to shape these ideas etc. into a more coherent form. It also helps to process and release the ideas etc. That is, the ideas tend to linger in my conscience until I write them down and organize them. Once I write them down, the lingering tends to cease. I do not fully understand this process but it seems to be true.
So back to the initial question: What is the purpose of this blog? I believe the answer is: The purpose of this blog is to serve as a creative outlet where I can organize, process and release my thoughts and insights. I am not sure that purpose works to serve the interests of blog readers. Perhaps it does. But their interests are not my primary purpose. However, there is something about publishing a blog where other people can read it that aids in this process. To wit, if I write something in my private journal there is not much thought invested in the neatness of my hand writing or the organization of my ideas as they relate to another person reading them. If I am being honest, there is some thought that someone might read my journal. But when journal writing, I cannot worry about that because it defeats its purpose. In other words, my journal is a venue for me to be completely honest with myself. The purpose is simply to put the thoughts onto paper as a means of processing and releasing them. I rarely go back and reread a portion of my personal journal unless there is a specific idea I want to retrieve. In that sense my journal serves as a personal historical record but it also serves to process and release the ideas as I previously described. By contrast, blog writing incorporates an additional step whereby effort is expended to coherently organize thoughts and write them in a manner intended to be presentable to an outside audience. There is something about this extra step that more fully does the work of processing and releasing the ideas. I do not feel I completely understand this last point but it seems to be something along those lines.
This blog has existed since 2013. When I started, the initial purpose was probably more oriented towards amassing an audience. At that time, I was in a different place intellectually and spiritually. To a certain extent, this blog documents my intellectual and spiritual evolution since that time. In that sense, I make no claim that there is an internal coherence to the thoughts expressed except that they document this personal evolution. The purpose of this blog has likewise evolved from its initial state of wanting to put myself “out there” in some form, to a venue to organize my thoughts in a more coherent manner and to release them in order to move on to whatever is next from that intellectual platform.
Before I close, I would also like to touch upon the title of this blog; “Winston Scrooge”, which is a combination of the names of the protagonists in “1984” by George Orwell and “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens. Both of these literary works have resonated with me deeply for various reasons. I can relate with Winston Smith of “1984” in his feeling of isolation, that the world can be a hostile and oppressive place and that struggling against it can be a fruitless and ultimately self-destructive enterprise. But I also relate to Ebenezer Scrooge of “A Christmas Carol” in his initial hardness of heart, but also in his underlying openness to change through the benevolent intervention of outside and divine forces. The telling of both their transformations through the course of their respective stories have lingered as ideas in my mind for most of my life. The fact that they have lingered so long suggests that I have not fully processed and released them.
I recently reread 1984 for a podcast I recorded and still extracted new and interesting information. I typically, reread “A Christmas Carol” before the end of the year. At the very least, I re-watch the Patrick Stewart version and hope to experience the unique resonance I have with it as well. Perhaps I will never fully process the depths of these stories. I hope I will never fully release either of them in the sense that I do not wish to loose that sense of resonance. I have to admit that my resonance with “A Christmas Carol” has dissipated somewhat of late. Perhaps I am clinging to something that should be released. But even that dynamic is informative. It demonstrates that in this life, all things evolve. I grow older and hopefully wiser. Old wounds can heal and the process of their healing is an evolution and an education if I am open to allowing it to be so.
And so, I will continue with this blog because it serves the purposes articulated above to do so. If there are readers out there who profit with me by my writing, so much the better. It is nice to think that is the case but I will remain on my guard not to let that be the motivation behind this enterprise. I will also keep in mind Winston Smith and Ebenezer Scrooge and their respective transformations that have resonated so deeply with me and continue to ponder why this is so as long as I continue to write.