A glance at the calendar shows me that not only did I turn 68 last month, but that today is the third anniversary of the debut of The Curmudgeonly Librarian. In spite of the good advice from those with good taste, I went ahead and started writing, and the jury is still out on the wisdom of the whole mishmash.
In past anniversary posts, I have laid the blame for this blog squarely on the shoulders of those who helped me get this blog set up on Word Press, so there is no need to further sully the reputation of those two excellent bloggers, so Chris and Bonny, you can breathe a sigh of relief on that score.
I believe it is the custom of bloggers, when writing one of these self-celebratory anniversary posts, to look back on the year and discuss the highs and lows. Also to maybe think about the coming year, but who’s rushing things?
Any Favorite Posts?
Bloggers are often asked if they have a favorite post, and I would have to say that I do have a favorite series. As you readers know, I can’t write a digest of my thoughts fer nothin’. I always end up writing two, three or four posts on one topic, just to be sure I won’t die with words left unspoken.
Looking back at the year’s postings, it’s easy to choose my personal favorite. I love Mark Twain, and among my personal favorites are his Diaries of Adam and Eve. This past year, I downloaded a free copy for my Kindle, and as I was reading it again for the first time in a decade or two, I was struck by Twain’s insight into men and women, and the problems that we can have through miscommunication and decided to share Twain’s wit AND wisdom. So I would have to say that my four-part Mark Twain On Relationships** series was my favorite of the year. It was certainly the most fun I had writing.
Most Important Post(s)?
Without question, I feel that my January/February series, Bad Teaching: Women Rule, Men Drool**, was the most important writing I did this year. This was confirmed to me when I saw that Paul Byerly, of Generous Husband, wrote in a comment to one of my posts, “Something is very wrong, and we can’t fix it if we refuse to look at it. Thanks for cracking it open for us.”
Years ago, I heard a preacher say that if the Church believed something, that there was a good chance that they got it wrong. I argued with him then, and he did admit that it was a rather hyperbolic statement. But as the decades have gone by, hang me if I don’t understand where he was coming from! Over the past three years, I’ve felt compelled to write a number of posts on the many bad teachings that the Church propagates concerning marriage and relationships.
My reading and research this past year went in a direction that I didn’t foresee, and in my Rule/Drool series, I ended up writing about the institutional misandry that I believe is part and parcel of today’s Churchianity. Drawing on examples I had come across that showed the Church’s bias in polity and practice against men, I shared how writers and pollsters were telling us that Christianity is the only major religion in the world that has more female adherents than male. As one writer put it, the Church is perfectly designed to get the results that it is getting, pushing men away.
Paul B. is right: something is very wrong, and if the church doesn’t address its flawed view of men and masculinity, the problem is only going to get worse.
Two New Things
In looking at my postings this year, it is easy to spot that there are two new directions in my postings, one of which is probably only temporary.
First, starting in June, I wrote posts about the need for men to be men, real men, for their wives and families. Be A Man and Be The Voice were exhortations, which usually isn’t my style. And also not my style is the examination of Indifferent Muddles** and Ugly** marriages. While I may look to write more exhorational posts for men, I don’t see myself continuing to dig into marital toxicity.
The second direction occurred outside my blogging, but did find its expression in another blog. My main blog is this one, The Curmudgeonly Librarian. To keep CSL focused on Christian marriage, I started a second blog as a place for my writing on religious topics, CSL On The Bible. About the same time, I came across a book that has me doing more reading, studying and re-examining of myself and my beliefs than anything else has ever done.
Sitting At the Feet of Rabbi Jesus has led me to other authors and teachers who are digging deep into the context and background of Jesus as a first-century rabbi. Remember that quote I mentioned above, that if the Church believed something, it most likely got it wrong? Well, I’m pretty much convinced that not only is today’s church guilty of misandry, it is blind to the anti-Semitism that separated the Church from its Hebraic roots. To borrow a phrase from one of my On The Bible posts, we seem to think that God uprooted His olive tree in order to plant a Christmas tree.
This year has seen me writing about new topics, but I only see one of the two as something that I will be examining in greater depth. The implications of realizing that Jesus was an observant Jewish rabbi who taught in the tradition of rabbis and sages are going to be game changers, and I am looking forward to further study and sharing of what I learn.
Stay tuned, folks, another year beckons….
** All the links with asterisks are to the first post in a series. Links without asterisks were one-off posts.