["Modestinus" at the now-defunct Opus Publicum has started over.
His re-boot post inspired some questions.]
1. What is a blog? It's a sort of public notice-board to which one regularly returns, posting ramblings, manifestos, notes, reviews, etc.
2. What is the purpose of a blog? If we think of it as a notice-board, dedicated to the use of a particular person or sometimes a small group, the purpose is clearly to inform the community of passersby, who hover around and discuss the notices placed there, and tack on their own notes to what has been posted.
3. The Master said, "He who exercises government by means of his virtue may be compared to the north polar star, which keeps its place and all the stars turn towards it." (Analects II.1)
4. The purposes of communication are: to convey the truth, to express one's will, and to delight. These are respectively the virtuous, useful, and pleasant goods of speaking.
5. One should not desire an audience for its own sake. One desires to communicate the truth, or to delight, or to manifest one's will, and the audience is the incidental recipient of these acts.
6. The perfection of an agent's act is on account of the excellence it communicates to those that receive it, not on account of their multitude. Pericles changed the hearts of a city with his words; Socrates of only a few. But there is no doubt as to who was the greater teacher.