I have been reading "Counting Steps", Mark Charlton's tribute to the footsteps of life, and what I see, in a life so very different from my own is the similarities of it.
Today he posted Letter To America, Thank you, Mark for your kind thoughts, and for putting words to exactly why it is that I read blogs.
Kindness is in rather short order in my corner of the world. Pick a topic, any topic, and you've got people who are screaming mad about it. Politics. Covid. Poverty. Education. God. Afghanistan. No matter what the topic, it will be debated hotly. Usually rudely.
I am not averse to discussion. I think when you put your thoughts out there, you have to be prepared that there will be those who disagree with you and that is okay. Different points of view can be debated respectfully. Too often, it is not. It seems particularly bad where I live and I have lost friends (and family) over some issues. The issues will not be resolved. I don't understand rudeness. I don't understand why they believe that they deserve every blessing, while also believing that others should be deprived of the smallest of blessings. It is unjust and it is heartbreaking.
And so I withdraw into my world of blogs and bloggers.
There is unkindness there too. I don't understand commenters totally ignoring the blog post to snipe at each other. I don't understand people who blog controversial ideas and name call those people with different opinions or tell them to 'bugger off'. And trolls...what joy is there in attacking others for the sheer pleasure of causing hurt?
But in the end, I read stories about persistence, about staying the course, about the joys of life, about the things that they question. Some posts are funny. Some quite serious. Some are ordinary. Some are extraordinary (imagine hearing that someone was married right after John and Yoko!) Some are as well written as any philosophy, some are more like mine, ideas and glimpses and events all cobbled together in a post.
All of them share one thing: they are a record of your own footsteps through turbulent and difficult times, and I am grateful for them. In a very real way, you are my 'letters' and you come from all the corners of the world. I enjoy you with my morning coffee and I begin my day knowing full well that I have kindred spirits all over. That knowledge alone, makes the world seem a kinder place.