It was just over a year ago that I kicked off this blog with the following quote from Saint Thomas Aquinas:
The name of being wise is reserved to him alone whose consideration is about the end of the universe, which end is also the beginning of the universe.
I then proceeded to write on a variety of topics—technology, politics, global warming, philosophy and religion, whatever—some of which I extended into multi-post series, and so on. And then I stopped for a little while. You see, I had started this blog to vent some things (much to the happiness of my wife, who was, frankly, tired of hearing me gripe about them), but as a side effect of venting, I eventually began to feel a lost sense of purpose. After all, those of us who take the time to start and write on our blogs are, to some extent, just yelling into the wind. And after yelling into the wind for a while, I began to ask myself: what’s the point?
This is something I’m sure all bloggers ask themselves at some crucial period in the lives of their blogs, and something that all bloggers must answer if they are to continue blogging. For some of us it comes sooner, for some later, but it is a question that all of us must answer at some point if we are to continue devoting time and energy to this craft. For me, the question manifested itself at around the beginning of the year: what’s the point?
And so my posting lagged, until a few days ago when I was going through my movie collection and came across one of the most brilliant and deliciously seditious movies ever made, and which I hadn’t watched in a while: V for Vendetta. For whatever reason, I always feel somewhat moved and liberated when I watch this film, and this time around it was this snippet of dialog, towards the end of the movie, that stuck in my head:
Creedy: (firing a pistol at V) Die! Die! Why won’t you die?! Why won’t you die?!
V: Beneath this mask, there is more than flesh. Beneath this mask, there is an idea, Mr. Creedy. And ideas are bulletproof!
The power of V for Vendetta, and why it is, and will always be, timeless in its message is not because it is a movie about revenge and revolution, but because it is a movie about the power of ideas; specifically the power of ideas to move you from the state of banality required for evil, and apathy, and complacency, and many of the other ills that ail us to take root and gain hold. Behind every revolution is a movement; behind every movement is an idea. And to this I will go one step further: behind every idea there is a voice.
Behind V’s mask there was an idea, but behind that, more importantly, was a voice. And thus it is with this blog and any other: a voice. Many times, it is a voice that is yelling into the wind. But, sometimes, even a voice into the wind is heard by others, and when enough people begin to yell, you may have the formation of an idea, and then maybe a movement, and then maybe a force for change. And the rest, as they say, is history.
Am I a revolutionary? No. Nor do I desire to be. But at some point, my children, or their children, will task me as to what I did to rise above the banal and help stop the world from burning, and I will at least be able to tell them that I was a voice. Not an idea, not a movement, not a revolution. Just a voice. And for now, for me, that is enough.