Thurman posted the following questions on Progressive Faith Blog Con Blog, which I want to answer.
What are your concerns and/or questions?
I have to admit, I have concerns with the Progressive Faith Blog Con. The last PFBC which occurred I could not attend, however I eagerly read every last word written on the event. What I noticed was a distinct lack of non-Abrahamic faith participants. I know there was a Buddhist and at least one Pagan, but their voices were overwhelmed by Abraham’s Children. Being the first year there were not many participants. I know how hard it is to get people to commit to spending a weekend far away, especially when a bunch of strangers — who you’ve regarded with suspicion in the past (and it may well be those also look at you with caution due to their experiences) — will be abundant. Pagans are notoriously difficult to get to commit, so I’m not surprised only one attended. What I would like to see is the active outreach to Pagans by PFBC organizers — and to other non-Abramhamic faith bloggers such as Hindu, Sikh, Wiccans, etc.
If you could gather a dozen progressive faith bloggers at a single table, what would you want to discuss?
There are a few things I would like to discuss. How we became faithful and how we will each use our faith to make this a better world. Walk away from the conference with a plan to discuss how to solve one problem in our own communities with the help of our faithful blogger friends.
What is our role in the blogosphere/public sphere/local church/worldwide body of believers?
Every journey begins with a first step. Before the world can be affected by the PFBC, we must affect ourselves and our fellow PFBC participants. Our ripple will take some time to move outward to the planet at large. So I say we create a roll in our own community, the move outward, riding each gentle ripple until the whole world feels our wake.
Do we share goals, values, and/or favorite pizza toppings?
It would seem if we’re sitting at a table, we must share goals and values. Goals and values such as inclusiveness and acceptance. Of understanding and compassion. Of learning without judging, of making life a little easier for our human neighbor. For acknowledging the pain we have caused each other and how we can heal those wounds to show compassion to a fellow human being. Of how to make friends and connections across the miles, oceans, and sky.
As for pizza toppings, I’m a big fan of cheese pizza. Sometimes I like onions on my pizza pie.
Is a blogcon necessary or even desirable? Yes desirable. And possibly necessary.
This post 9/11 world needs connection more than ever. We cannot let a small group of people undermine decades of peaceful desires. And we can prevent further hatred by sharing wealth, power, and knowledge. By being transparent and open. Of holding our hearts in our hands, outstretched in front of us for all to see.
What can we do together that we cannot alone?
Make connections. Tell our stories. Be authentic. Share. Understanding and accepting. Love unconditionally. Inclusive. That is what we do together