Tuesday, February 15, 2011
The Matter of My Blog
Lately, I have been uninterested in blogging, yet getting to that bored stage of recovery - well enough to feel like doing things, but not quite well enough to do much about it. Blogging should be perfect for this stage; it keeps the mind busy but doesn't overtax the body.
The problem is self-involvement. At four weeks post-op, I am still quite self-involved - did I take the blood thinner? do I need ibuprofen? a nap? more fibre? more/less walking? Not what blog readers, no matter how loyal, want to hear much, if anything, about - and not what I want to record here.
Montaigne, however, could do it. He was a genius who wrote essays that were about himself, yet have attracted and delighted readers for more than 400 years.
Montaigne's essays discuss much about his life, told often as highly personal anecdotes - revealing and quite intimate. How does he manage to write about himself and his feelings, yet remain interesting and pertinent?
So many bloggers fail to take the step that Montaigne always takes. They fail to relate what they reveal about themselves to something meaningful to everyone else.
Montaigne's topics, no matter that he presented them from a highly personal perspective, deal with intellectual and philosophical issues that matter deeply to humanity. He did say, "I am myself the matter of my book," but that self is always a human being amongst and representative of all human beings.
Humanity is the matter of Montaigne's book. Too bad that can't be said for the millions of bloggers who use their blog as a mirror they can, like Narcissus, gaze at, endlessly longing for even more of themselves.