The Second Eclectic

Technology changes how we relate to God and each other

Internet parochialism

It’s easy to become insulated on the Internet. That’s ironic, but it’s true. We go out, find web sites that we like and affirm our opinions, make them favorites, and return to them often.

This is a constant frustration to me because I value being well-balanced. But well-balanced in contrast to what? That’s the question. I could be well-balanced in contrast to Arminians, a distinction some would fail to see. Or I could be balanced in contract to Communists, a distinction that might be more obvious. Or I could be well-balanced in contrast to a host of other things opposite from me.

But the Internet makes it easy for me to search for things I want more info on, to find people writing for people like me, and being hyperlinked to more people like me.

No I don’t think this parochialism is all bad. I think good things grow out of very specific communities. I’ve mentioned the Blues coming out of the Mississippi Delta. Or perhaps the Declaration of Independence which came out of a room in a building in Philadelphia.

Yes, good things can come out of very small spaces. Some criticize the Bay of Pigs for being directed from isolation.

So how do you strike the tension between isolation and openness? When do you stop taking input and start creating output?