The other day, there was this. Today, there was this. Then, within minutes of that, a new commenter left a new comment on an old blog post:
I am a recovering Liberal, so I totally get you on this one. All those closed doors within our minds, guarded by rage and spleen, trying with impotent rage to defend the myriad logical flaws in our position, because we are RIGHT and if we let others tear down our divinely-ordained moral authority, those crazy Fascists who disagree with us will WIN and everyone will be doomed to abject misery, like all humans throughout history were, until 1960.
By and large, this mindset is what you are up against. I call it the Principle of the Inevitable Extreme Fundamentalism of Received Wisdom. Left-leaning ideology is the "received wisdom" now, and the more true this becomes, the more violent and irrational its proponents will become. Like the received wisdom of the past (racial segregation, anyone?), those who subscribe to it feel assured of general approval from others, and so feel little need to think things through on a case-by-case basis. It is much easier to swallow an entire ideology whole...to allow ourselves to stop thinking...than to continually use our brains and assess the world around us. As this process takes place, argument will become more hysterical and consist more and more of a complete shutting down of argument, by way of the tried and true "How dare you disagree with me? What kind of person are you?"
Please understand, this isn't what most of us mean to do. But when an otherwise reasonable person comes up against the shut doors in his or her mind, and is *morally certain* that the antagonist in debate "just can't see what I see", when this person is certain that those doors are shutting out *anarchy and tyranny* rather than *reason*...well, even the most generally reasonable and gentle person can get pretty shrill.
So now, when somebody asks me my political leanings, I say "Catholic". At least that's a position I can defend, because I know for sure what it stands for!
In light of all that, and in light of the responses to this and this, I have been mulling over the purpose of this blog. Here's what I have come up with:
I want this to be a teaching blog.
But teach whom? Well, Catholics, mainly. Both the lurkers and those known to me. I want Catholics to see that our Faith is cohesive, consistent and reasonable, and I want them to be able to teach it in their own homes and communities, and defend it in the world. I want to help make up for the catechesis deficit we've had for the past two generations.
Do I expect to be attacked for speaking the Truth bluntly? Yes. We live in a "feel good" world, and if what I present doesn't make you "feel good," then I risk feeling your wrath. That's okay, and I can take it.
Can I be counted on to dialogue respectfully and unemotionally with those who disagree? Yes, ask Miss Gwen. :) But I will speak the plain truth as I see it, even if it's unpopular or makes people uncomfortable. I don't sugarcoat, because a) we need to be able to dialogue like grown-ups, and b) it wastes time. Time is valuable, people! Many may chafe at my straight-talk approach; they are free to read other, more soothing blogs.
Do I hope to plant seeds for the non-believers or Catholic-bashers, maybe even winning them over to our side? Of course! But that is not my primary aim. Pope John Paul II once said that it's impossible to correct every error we encounter, but we must always speak the truth. I know that some folks will never be convinced, and others will react with a knee-jerk emotional outburst. I accept that. I won't censor them, and I will occasionally dissect their words to get to the truth of the matter.
By the way, in matters of politics and policy, the opinions on this blog are my own. In matters of theology, I don't give my opinion, I simply pass along what the Church teaches. Truth originates with God, and our only job is to seek it humbly, then live it.
But in addition to being a teaching blog, I want this blog to be a learning blog, with me as the student. First, I want to learn what makes leftist/liberal/atheist minds tick. Why do they think as they do? As I've said before, the liberal mindset makes no logical sense to me (except when a rare and honest liberal like Miss Gwen is able to follow a premise to its inevitable, logical conclusion).
I also want to learn from the amazing women I have befriended on these blogs. So many of you have struggled with heavy crosses, and have grown more virtuous and holy as you humbly die to self and cling to Christ. I want to keep learning at your feet, which is why I so enjoy reading your edifying comments here and on your own blogs.
A teaching blog and a learning blog. Yep, that's what I want this to be.
Some posts on the Bubble's horizon:
Mortal vs. venial sin
Do Catholics think everyone is going to hell?
Moral Reasoning 101 (what makes an action moral?)... quiz form!
Some of the most common illogical arguments
The agony of scrupulosity
Where liberal logic is unassailable
Why does the idea objective truth make people so emotional?
A really cool post on sexual sin
I don't know if this post makes sense to anyone but me. It was a "thinking out loud" post. Thanks for listening in!