Has it been a year since I started this blog?
For the one year anniversary of 8164.org I’d like to reflect on a few things. I’m not a fan of blogging about blogs, so this post will be about what I’ve learned instead.
When I read blogs, newspapers, magazines or books, I want to be entertained or informed. Sometimes if I get lucky, I get to read something that’s both entertaining and informative.
So when I write, I try to offer my readers the same. This has not been easy. First, let me tell you about my two uncles.
My father’s older brother is an established editor. He writes beautifully. He’d use vocabulary and literature devices that are way above an average person’s comprehension. I used to marvel at the fact he was able to use ancient Chinese references in his writings, words I didn’t understand. My father’s younger brother isn’t as well versed. Instead, he just uses plain words. So plain, even I could understand them as a kid. A few years ago both uncles wrote on my family’s online forum on the 20th anniversary of my grandfather’s passing. As usual, my older uncle wrote a long essay, recalling many past events in the most vivid and detailed way. Again, using words I didn’t understand. It was my younger uncle’s short post that brought me to tears. He wrote about this one instance when he was in grade school, my grand father, who was normally very stern with his sons, praised him for the first time. He ended his post with “Dad, I love you and I miss you.” His writings are always like that: honest, unpretentious, and human.
My younger uncle has a lot of influence not just on how I write, but also how I perceive creative works in general. Good writing, design, art, films, and photography have one thing in common: to provoke an emotional response. This is often achieved by tapping into the human psyche in simple and plain ways, instead of means that are extravagant.
So writing on this site has been a good exercise for me. I hope it will get better over time.
When I first started 8164.org, it was meant to be a site for Tao Te Ching translations. As you can see, I’m way behind on the translations. I think I have gained a good understanding of the essence of the philosophical Taoism. Ironically, this is part of the reason why I stopped writing about it. I feel Taoism is lived, not talked about. The point is to get the essence of it. Any further analyzing makes one to focus on the dogma instead of the teaching. This is probably why you don’t see a lot of Taoists knocking on your door to convert you. I do however, want to finished all the translations eventually. I feel certain chapters are very beneficial to one’s mental well being especially in this day and age.
Lastly, I’d like to thank all my readers who have commented, emailed, or simply lurked. You have been very encouraging.