Narcissistic Blogging

I felt convicted by what Carl Trueman said in an interview here. He distinguishes between the desire to teach and the desire to be a teacher. What is wrong with the latter is that it may be motivated by pride, i.e., the desire to be somebody. And, in relation to this, he talks about the internet as problematic since “The internet has few quality controls and feeds narcissism.” Trueman speaks truly, and that means whether I teach or I blog I should check my motives. Frankly, I blog because it’s fun and at the same time I think some people might in one way or another be helped or benefited by some of the things I blog about. But I think Trueman’s right: blogging can be a venue for showing off, as well as a regular exercise in narcissism. The remedy for that is not to stop blogging, but to make certain one’s motives are right. Here are some quotes from that interview:

Thus, what concerns me most is that students may simply desire to be teachers. If that is their motivation, then they have already abandoned a pure heart, a good conscience, and a sincere faith, and their theology, no matter how orthodox, is just a means to an end and no sound thing…

If a prideful desire to be a teacher, to be a somebody, is the fundamental problem, then one other aspect which is increasingly problematic is the whole phenomenon of the internet. Now anyone can put their views out for public consumption, without the usual processes of accountability, peer review, careful editing timely reflection etc. which is the norm in the scholarly world and has also been the tradition in the more theologically responsible parts of the Christian publishing industry. The internet has few quality controls and feeds narcissism

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