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Vieraskieliset / In-english

Blog: Post­card

Vieraskieliset / In-english
17.7.2016 14.52

Juttua muokattu:

1.1. 23:35

Most pe­op­le like to tra­vel du­ring their va­ca­ti­on, and tra­ve­ling of­ten helps us see fa­mi­li­ar things from a dis­tan­ce. I sent my grand­mot­her a pic­tu­re post­card from a place of cods and moun­tains.

Grand­ma li­kes to hear that I tra­vel. I wrote to her about the good things I had ex­pe­rien­ced, the way we usu­al­ly write on post­cards, about nice out­ward ap­pe­a­ran­ces. I did not write about the night spent in a tight­ly pac­ked car, though that was al­so a very good ex­pe­rien­ce, nor about what I had le­arnt of my­self.

I knew grand­ma would be hap­py about the card. So­me­ti­mes a coup­le of li­nes may make a world of dif­fe­ren­ce, to bring great joy or great sor­row. Texts are po­wer­ful in that way. They do things and act. Dif­fe­rent texts are used to make cont­racts, in­form pe­op­le, claim know­led­ge, and share me­mo­ries. Texts or­ga­ni­ze and re­tain things and al­so re­mind us. Texts can be used to in­vol­ve or exc­lu­de pe­op­le. Some texts can make vi­sib­le phe­no­me­na that are on­ly just emer­ging or have re­mai­ned hid­den. New words are made up all the time for such pur­po­ses, such as ‘cy­ber­bul­ly’ or ‘road rage’. Words are not “just words”, they are what they are, though dif­fe­rent pe­op­le may un­ders­tand words dif­fe­rent­ly.

I am gra­te­ful for an email that re­cent­ly com­men­ted on the po­wer that these blog texts may have. Do they me­re­ly rep­li­ca­te a gi­ven way of li­ving and ex­pe­rien­cing things? Do they show us on­ly the out­ward ap­pe­a­ran­ce, or do they tell us about real life in cont­rast with that ap­pe­a­ran­ce? Should Päi­vä­mies blogs pick out ne­ga­ti­ve things, be­cau­se there are ne­ga­ti­ve things whe­re­ver there are pe­op­le? Who ac­tu­al­ly holds the po­wer of texts? The wri­ter, the pub­lis­her, or the re­a­der?

In my opi­ni­on, blog texts fall di­a­go­nal­ly bet­ween fac­tu­al and fic­ti­o­nal texts. They may take the form of an ex­pert ar­tic­le, a short story, a re­view, or so­met­hing el­se. Blogs are part of the tex­tu­al world of the 2010s, where it is pos­sib­le to write ho­we­ver you want and mix up things ho­we­ver much you want. This opens up comp­le­te­ly new pros­pects for com­mu­ni­ca­ti­on. And I gu­ess the res­pon­si­bi­li­ty of words clic­ked for pub­li­ca­ti­on si­mul­ta­ne­ous­ly inc­re­a­ses.

I think that, at their best, these spraw­ling and me­an­de­ring new text ty­pes – such as blogs, tweets, writ­ten ext­racts of di­a­lo­gue, vi­deo and au­dio clips – pro­mo­te live open­ness. When you write, it is so­me­ti­mes ea­sier to start from a text pro­du­ced by so­me­o­ne el­se than from yo­ur own thoughts, and there may even be ge­nui­ne di­a­lo­gue bet­ween texts. At their worst, these new text ty­pes may dest­roy real lands­ca­pes, or on­ly desc­ri­be smel­ly dried cods rat­her than snow-cap­ped moun­tains. Of cour­se you can al­so desc­ri­be cods, why not, if it is ap­p­rop­ri­a­te. They exist just like all the ot­her fis­hes, and they are just as real as the snow-cap­ped moun­tains spark­ling in the sun.

Of­ten, ho­we­ver, it is good and be­au­ti­ful to speak about what we all see and ap­p­re­ci­a­te in the lands­ca­pe, the sea. When we have a sha­red view of so­met­hing, it is ea­sier to fo­cus on de­tails that are seen dif­fe­rent­ly by each of us. This was the wise thought of a friend who be­lie­ves dif­fe­rent­ly from me. Thank you!

These blog texts writ­ten by in­di­vi­du­al pe­op­le, each with their own per­so­nal style, can be seen as blocks that build up the pub­lic ima­ge of the La­es­ta­di­an Lut­he­ran mo­ve­ment and al­so as part of mis­si­on work. And I am sure there are al­so ot­her as­pects to them – why did you want to read this? And alt­hough these texts have found their place as part of the mo­ve­ment’s pub­lic com­mu­ni­ca­ti­on, not­hing will rep­la­ce live en­coun­ters and dis­cus­si­ons. I think the most im­por­tant and most real rep­re­sen­ta­ti­ves and spo­kes­per­sons of our faith are the in­di­vi­du­al La­es­ta­di­an pe­op­le in dif­fe­rent parts of the world. These in­di­vi­du­als al­so pos­sess and use the gos­pel.

By chan­ce, I and my two won­der­ful fel­low tra­ve­lers came ac­ross a yo­ung man with a vi­o­lin on his back who was hitch-hi­king on the Lo­fo­ten Is­lands. We had din­ner with him on a lan­ding stage in the sha­dow of lar­ge ships and wis­hed him a safe trip down the Nor­we­gi­an co­ast. This yo­ung man was tra­ve­ling on his own, an in­di­vi­du­al rep­re­sen­ting those who share his faith. I could have writ­ten my grand­ma about this and some ot­her fun en­coun­ters, but the card was too small, and there is not re­al­ly space for that even here. :/

P.S. I wish re­war­ding en­coun­ters, at­ti­tu­des, and lands­ca­pes to all tra­ve­lers! If you go on the Lo­fo­ten Is­lands, watch out for fo­xes – they eat pla­tes.

Vil­ja Paa­vo­la

Trans­la­ti­on: S.-L. Lei­no­nen

The blog post was pub­lis­hed in Fin­nish in on­li­ne Päi­vä­mies on 22 July 2015.


Jee­sus sa­noo: "To­ti­ses­ti, to­ti­ses­ti: sil­lä, joka us­koo, on ikui­nen elä­mä." Joh. 6:47

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