Well, more or less. In the Philokalia, St. Diadochos reflects thus on the danger of talking too much:
When the door of the steam baths is continually left open, the heat inside rapidly escapes through it; likewise the soul, in its desire to say many things, dissipates itsremembrance of God through the door of speech, even though everything it says may be good. Thereafter the intellect, though lacking appropriate ideas, pours out a welter of confused thoughts to anyone it meets, as it no longer has the Holy Spirit to keep its understanding free from fantasy. Ideas of value always shun verbosity, being foreign to confusion and fantasy. (“On Spiritual Knowledge,” in the Philokalia Volume 1, 276)
If indeed “ideas of value shun verbosity,” then is it possible to gain much through blogging? I think the 5th century Bishop has a point. Granted, it can be taken too far – scholarship of every kind is built on a kind of “verbosity.” We wouldn’t have PHDs without forests of trees being destroyed to put ink on pages.
I suppose these matters are on my mind because I’m preaching tomorrow on humility, based on the Christ hymn in Philippians 2. It strikes me that blogging doesn’t seem like a very humble activity – a way for those unsuccessful in traditional media to put their thoughts out there for the world to see. Most social media is built on this desire. Is there such a thing as “humble blogging”? Is it possible, in the verbosity that is the blogosphere, to find ideas of value?
My own thought, at least today: I’m not sure that anything I’ve written is worth the time, either in my writing of it or your reading of it, when compared to the Scriptures or to the writings of the Church Fathers or the greats like Augustine, Aquinas, Luther, and Barth. For that matter, I don’t know if I’ve read any blogs good enough to justify spending the time there versus any of the above. What say you?
(And don’t be too verbose.)