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I think that the online world tends to cope better with happiness than sadness. This is a generalisation of course, and generalisations are usually wrong. That said people will rally round on your Facebook page during times of trial, so perhaps it depends more on the nature of your happiness or sadness. The same is true of the church. Loneliness or depression, for instance, do not tend to attract as much sympathy as something involving an impressive bandage.
The causes of online absences are notoriously difficult to diagnose. It could be that your friend who has not been seen on Twitter for a week is desperately unhappy, or it could just be that they have forgotten their password or that the wire has come out of the back of their computer. Sadly the likelihood is that few people will notice, as there is always someone else posting something interesting.
They could, of course, have realised that nothing beats face to face contact with an actual human being who is in the same room. But that said, some of these people could have been ones they met through a shared interest in being on the internet.
What I’m trying to say, in essence, is that the world of online computing is both terribly good and terribly bad. I realise that this is not a clear and coherent statement of belief, which is why I have never been asked to play any significant role in devising creeds for any of the world religions.
Posted by Dave at 6:59 pm on November 26, 2010 and filed under Cartoons, Profound, Utter nonsense.
No-one knows where good ideas come from. You can go back to the place that you had the last idea in the same frame of mind and order the same coffee and the likelihood is that you will just stare out of the window with a blank sheet of paper.
The harder you try to have a good idea the less likely you are to have one. But then again if you stop trying to have an idea then you probably won’t have one either. I find the best approach is somewhere in between. Put in a bit of half-hearted effort every now and then and try to trick your brain into having a good idea when it is not expecting you to.
Of course not-really-that-funny ideas are ten a penny, or you can get a bumper pack for a pound. I have notebooks full of the things.
I try to save my very best ideas and not use them all up at the same time. I draw a cartoon based on my second best idea hoping that the best idea will keep for a rainy day. Unfortunately a lot of ideas dilute over time. Some of the goodness fades in the sunlight. When you write them down in the notebook they are fresh and alive, but when you open up the notebook the following morning they aren’t quite as funny as they first appeared.
Sometimes an idea will come to you at a point at which it is not socially acceptable to write it down. You have the choice of either (a) Committing it to memory knowing that that will probably be the last you hear of it (b) Break the taboo knowing that the idea was worth the cost of being thrown out of the Society for ideas writing at an inappropriate juncture (c) Make some shifty notes under the table cloth.
In the comments section of this post I propose we have an ideas amnesty. You can write ideas here with no fear that anyone will ridicule you. You can ask for ideas, suggest ideas or harvest ideas. They can be about anything – they don’t have to be cartoon ideas. It doesn’t matter how rubbish they are. Of course, some of the worst ideas are also the best ones. It is just that we are looking at them upside down.
Posted by Dave at 10:23 pm on May 29, 2007 and filed under Cartooning, Profound, Utter nonsense.
Hey, look at this:
(Diagram showing co-occurrences of names in the New Testament)
This is from a site called ‘Many eyes‘, which enables you to look at data in interesting ways. Your computer might need a special widgetty-thingummy, I don’t know. Here are some interesting ones I found done by Crossway, who are Bible-related people. I don’t really understand them, but they look lovely and look like they should be interesting. You can zoom and click and all sorts of things.
Many Eyes : Co-Occurrences of Names in the New Testament
Many Eyes : Who Gets Mentioned Together in the New Testament
I’m sure they will be a blessing to some of you theological geeks and people like me who like the Bible and nice pictures.
This page explains it all a bit more. I found the link here.
Posted by Dave at 8:11 pm on January 27, 2007 and filed under Profound, Spirituality.
A lot of Christians talk continually about ‘God’s plan for our lives’.
I have the following problems with this idea:
- It does not really seem to be a concept that the Bible endorses that much. Sure, you can dig up the odd verse here are there which says that God has a plan for someone’s life, but they mostly seem to me to be talking in very general terms. That God has a plan for each specific person’s life does not seem to me to be an emphasis in the Bible.
- It is all nice and lovely to talk about God’s plan when it involves good things happening, but what when it involves bad things happening? This seems to me to make God into an unkind being who plans bad things for people.
- Where do you draw the line between the events that are part of the plan and the ones that are not? How about insignificant details, such as the space you will park your car in today?
- What happens if you ‘wander off the pathway’ and do something that isn’t part of the plan? Is there a plan B and a plan C and so on? If there are an infinite number of alternative plans then the concept of there being a plan A in the first place becomes nonsensical as being imperfect none of us will ever follow it.
I’m fully aware that questions about predestination, free will etc have been unsolved by theologians for hundreds of years, so the likelihood of sorting it all out in a Cartoon Blog comments thread is not that great. But let’s try anyway – if you have any thoughts please post them below.
Posted by Dave at 9:07 am on January 8, 2007 and filed under Cartoons, Profound, Spirituality.
John Davies has a new blog which will document the two month walk he is planning for his sabbatical in 2007. He will be walking along the approximate route of the M62, the motorway linking Hull with Leeds, Halifax, Manchester, and Liverpool.
But why walk the M62? Many people given the chance for three or four months away go somewhere exotic, you know like the Far East. But I’ve become increasingly convinced (helped by philosophers of travel like Alain de Botton) that the exotic is not a physical place but a state of mind. It’s not where you go so much as your mental attitude which determines your perception of a place.
A week or two ago I listened to a CD John sent me of his Greenbelt talk ‘Reading the Everyday’. I’ve not always been good at being content in uninteresting surroundings, but I’ve found John’s approach, that of finding value in the mundane and the ordinary, quite inspiring. You can get the talk as a CD or MP3 from the Greenbelt shop.
John’s regular blog is here.
Posted by Dave at 9:56 am on December 4, 2006 and filed under Art, Blogging, Mundane, Profound, Spirituality.
I have folded this cartoon up, put it in an envelope, stuck a stamp on it and posted it to We Blog Cartoons. You are welcome to freely re-use the cartoon on your own blog, but please donate the used stamp to a used stamp charity.
These are my thoughts on this partially cloudy Essex morning:
I have been thinking about ‘right and wrong’. Is it the responsibility of the individual to decide what is right or wrong? Or does the community of faith (the ‘church’, some might call it) have a role in telling us what is right and wrong too?
I feel that, on one hand, unless one has walked in another person’s shoes, experienced what they have experienced then we, as onlookers have no right to judge their actions. If another person has honestly thought their actions through and used and used the best means at their disposal to decide what is right and what is wrong (For example their conscience, the Bible as they understand it, their own life experience, etc) who are we to tell them they are mistaken?
But then again this view breaks down when it comes to actions that we all acknowledge are wrong. We all, for instance, would agree that it is wrong to steal pencils. I cannot imagine that any unrepentant pencil-stealers frequent this blog. But what if a friend believes strongly that if they see a pencil it is their right to take that pencil home and add it to their pencil case? Surely we would be right to make them see the error of their ways. Otherwise no pencils would be safe and scociety would descend into chaos. ‘Lock up your pencils’ would become our watchword.
The problem is, I suppose, that we need to decide which ‘wrongs’ are undisputed wrongs and which are debatable wrongs. The problem is often that there are disputes about which ones are undisputed. I suspect the disagreements in the Anglican world stem in part from such a difference of opinion.
If you have no idea what I have been on about please continue merrily on your way and come back tomorrow when I shall refrain from such in-depth talk. Otherwise do feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.
Posted by Dave at 10:27 am on June 23, 2006 and filed under Cartoons, New Weblogcartoons cartoons, Profound.
This post is to alert you to the fact that three forthcoming announcements are to be made on this blog tomorrow. They relate to this website and my cartoon work. I am hoping that by posting with an air of mystery that expectation will be heightened and that an avid audience will tune in for the particulars. By highlighting the words ‘three forthcoming announcements’ in bold type above I am hoping that any who skim read the posts will be stopped in their tracks and will be caused to want to find out what the unusual boldness is about. By emphasising that fact that there will be three announcements I am hoping that any who would shrug off a single announcement will log on knowing that even if two of the announcements are rubbish and uninteresting at least one of the announcements will be worth the time and energy involved in tuning in.
Posted by Dave at 7:51 pm on May 31, 2006 and filed under CartoonChurch progress, Mundane, Profound, Utter nonsense.
The time is now 01:02:03 on 04/05/06.
Yes, I stayed up for it, but I was doing some work. Honest.
I bet diamond geezer stayed up too. Update: Yes, he did.
The BBC Magazine website has more.
Posted by Dave at 1:02 am on May 4, 2006 and filed under Current events, Profound.