Sunday, September 25, 2005

Philosophy of this Web Log

Given recent posts of mine and responses to them, I should give you a minimal philosophy of the web log.

1. Since it is my web log, I decide what to post and whether to allow some responses to the post. I have deleted some posts because of their uncivil and uncharitable tone. I don't have the time or patience to get into protracted debates, especially over character issues (at least in this format). People may be frustrated when I delete a post, but as editor (so to speak) that is my prerogative. Remember, you are not paying for this forum. When I send a letter to the editor, there is no promise that it will be published. That, I take it, is a proper analogy.

2. I don't live for this web log. I am a full time professor in addition to my other speaking engagements and many writing assignments. I do it my spare time or when I want an instant forum for some idea (which can be dangerous). Please don't expect me to respond to your personal emails or to every post you make to one of my logs. I will do my best, however. There are genuine limitations to the goodness of this medium for engaging significant ideas. On that, see my book The Soul in Cyberspace.

3. Nevertheless, I welcome your readership and participation.

Best,
Doug Groothuis

6 comments:

Gary said...

I am glad you don't let your postings get cluttered with "carping" responses. I was referred to your site for my edification - to learn - and that is happening.
Keep the reins in hand.

Sidebar - If you don't mind, what Coltrane pieces would you recommend as an intro to his work?

olivia said...

"Being a curmudgeon has nothing to do with rudeness or incivility..."

Hmmm... On the contrary, it does (in your case). I often find your blog's manner of dialogue to be childish and irascible. And your recent "Philosophy of this Web Log" seems quite like the temper tantrum response of one who can't handle legitimate challenge.

Enjoy removing this...

poserorprophet said...

Wow, does life experience and academic expertise garner so little respect these days?

The medium of an anonymous forum presents certain challenges (i.e. people can troll, and I've noticed that many of us -- myself included -- don't tend to give others the benefit of the doubt in this sort of medium) but I hope that you, Dr. Groothuis, will continue to blog so that those of us who are eager to learn can continue to hear from you.

God bless us, everyone.

Dan

Douglas Groothuis said...

Olivia:

I will not delete thee. You may not like all of what goes on in Curmudgeon-land, but you might be edified by some of it. I hope you will.

Best,
Doug Groothuis

Douglas Groothuis said...

Dear Gary:

Coltrane is an acquired taste for most. Even Nat Hentoff, a gifted jazz writer--and social critic-- who ended up lauding Coltrane, had to warm up to him. Coltrane went through various musical periods. The last period of avant-guarde (or experimental) was the hardest for most people to take, myself included (although I do like some of this work, especially "Interstellar Space").

I suggest listening to Trane's work on the class Miles Davis's work, "Kind of Blue." Then listen to the hard be-bop classic, "Giant Steps." One recording (with the "classic quartet") is just called "Coltrane," and is sublime. "A Love Supreme" is the pinnacle, but is not easily scaled if you are not familiar with jazz sensibilities. One of my students said it took him several listenings to "get IT." When he did he was driving in his car and had to pull over to the side of the road. This kind of thing happens with John Coltrane's music. I have some reviews of his recordings on Amazon, if you are interested.

Blessings,
Doug Groothuis

Ted Gossard said...

Dr. Groothuis,

Good to get your offerings. I appreciate what you do and mostly resonate with you- certainly with reference to the import of the mind in the Christian faith.

I find the interaction (comments) I've read on your blog often to be interesting.

Thanks for it.