Monday, April 18, 2011

Communication Potholes

Sometimes, communication is like shouting through a door.

Tried that with my sister recently - somehow, even though I had enunciated, the phrase "I was writing about how I didn't want to do the morning pages" turned into "You're saying you don't have a potato??! What?" Sometimes clear words just aren't enough because they've been obscured by your desire to be lazy.

That's right, lazy. I could have opened the door and walked over to my sister and said my phrase if I really wanted her to understand me. That's what I think about most theologians/preachers/teachers/professors who try so hard to be clever that they confuse their readers who feel they are wading through a word bog. Or, it can be indubitably surmised that those who obfuscate the clear rendering of key subtexts may befuddle their most allegiant admirers, akin to miring themselves in expressionary swampland. (I'm now getting editorial 'redlining' from blogspot, who doesn't appreciate my efforts to look smart.)

If you only write for a certain audience, don't complain that most people can't understand you. You didn't intend to be understood, you decided to stand like a lone reed, waving sadly on the abandoned banks of the Lake of Intellect. ("Ours, my boy, is a high and lonely destiny" - Uncle Andrew from C.S. Lewis' The Magician's Nephew) There are few Christian authors that I really enjoy, just as there are few Christian musicians whose music I can stand, because it seems as though both types of artist are trying desperately to make Christianity into a mold it never intended to fill - Heavenly Hooey.

Many Christian authors seem to indicate that, as long as you throw a few verses into a fiction/therapy/job book, add a semi-original paragraph about either God's Love or God's Sovereignty (depending on whether you're Non-Denominational or Anything Else), you're golden. Hand over the harp, let the angels sing and the publishers quote.

Christian musicians - if there are any more 'worship bands' ready to make another album of songs that are bigoted enough to exclude anything about God's wrath against sinners or eternal hellfire....please just stay at home. I almost wish that you'd experience Johnny Cash's wretched drug-filled lifestyle rather than listen to how you want to wrap sweet Jesus in fuzzy pink blankets and cuddle up to him for eternity. I am sorry to be so harsh, but it must be a Christian artist rule not to tell your fellow musician that they need to edit.

(Feel free to leave instructive notes on this blog. By this last paragraph, I'm obviously asking for snarky feedback.)

1 comment:

  1. Actually, i rather like the paragraph casting aspersions on the fuzzy pink blankets of popular Christian music, myself. Preach it, sista! No more endless choruses of "he loves me neatly, sweetly, and completely" version 2012, please! That being said, I do also need frequent reminders about God's grace because somehow I still find ingenious ways of trying to earn that unmerited, forever unmeritable favor, and grace reminds me I don't have to live in a mantle of shame when i realize that, yet again, i have screwed up royally. Thanks for your pithy words, sis.