Quaker Universalist Conversations

How does blogging affect us spiritually?

Rachel Findley, a Northern California Friend, wrote in response to the question: “Would John Woolman be a blogger?”

John Woolman was a serious communicator. He wrote pamphlets, letters, and a journal. He traveled widely in North America and England, speaking with individuals in their houses and with Quakers and non-Quakers gathered at meetings. Twice he attempted to organize lobbying legislatures in Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. He used the technology available at the time: he had things printed, sometimes at  his own expense.

He avoided using forms of communication that worked against the good he sought to promote. He didn’t use the English post, which involved cruelty to horses and riders, and he didn’t ride in English stagecoaches, and he didn’t travel in a “first class” or “business class” cabin or in a ship that was engaged in the slave trade. That slowed him down.

Slowing down, he found, brought him closer to the spirit of universal love, and into right relationship with all the creatures. He found walking more conducive to spiritual well being than traveling quickly.

I think the question he’d ask about blogging would be, how does blogging affect blogger and bloggee spiritually? Does it make our hearts and souls more spacious and less greedy for experience? If it enlarges our spirits and brings us closer to one another to God, then it’s a welcome addition to the web that knits us together in solidarity with all beings. If not, not.

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