I started today wanting to talk about image, but that fell through because I’d rather keep my blood pressure down and not suffer the inevitable headache it will give me. Suffice to say I think the whole community needs a long look in a mirror. Instead of looking at and lecturing everyone and anyone on the importance of maintaining an appropriate public image, I figure I’d reflect on my image as portrayed through the Aspis of Ares, and take stock of the negative and positive.
Being a more dour person, I’ll start with the negative. First and foremost in my mind is the failure of my survey. In the spirit of being diplomatic, I allowed too much leeway in how the questions were answered, and the data sucked. I don’t think the quality of the data would have been as bad had I A) had more experience in writing surveys, and B) had more responses. The latter is probably due to a combination of my lack of shameless self-promotion, and because I was an unknown on the blogging scene, or even in the online groups I “frequent”.
One thing I feel I’ve done poorly on is relating Ares to some of my posts. I think I’ve been getting a bit too personal, and while being slightly personal makes the material relatable, it can hinder the message if it becomes too personal. In sort of the same vein, I’m wondering if I’ve been too PC. While my goal is more about being informative, I think I lose a little relevance if I attempt to steer too far from controversy. Ares is and was controversial, after all. Being wishy-washy doesn’t help, as I’d rather avoid injecting my politics into the mix, as I did in my SOPA article. That certainly was a mistake to write here. While it needed to be said, it was certainly the wrong forum for such a tirade.
Probably the biggest hurdle for this entire blog is my laziness coupled with my desire for perfection. Research is work, and it takes time to come up with well thought out posts. There are posts I’d love to write, such as about the birth of Ares, but there’s just no information there. I’m not satisfied when a post is only 200-300 words long. Unfortunately, this leads to folding things together and lots of information ending up in long posts, making it somewhat difficult to find. Thankfully, this should be easy to rectify; I plan on adding tabs and consolidating articles on my blog, because in truth, I hardly know what’s been written and what hasn’t.
Okay, enough of the negatives. Time to look at the positive.
For one, I’ve noticed folks using my blog as a resource, and that was my number one goal — expanding the material available. It’s not just friends whoring out the link, but my blog doing well on Google and being found in random collections on pagan web rings and aggregation services such as Tumbler. Little by little, the awareness is spreading. That leads me to my next point.
Awareness about Ares, his importance in our lives, and a more multi-dimensional picture of his worship and cult is spreading. Some of my most successful posts are about Ares in our culture, his relation to other gods, and most of all, ways we can honor Ares. People are coming to realize they can pray to Ares, too, without being a soldier or a cop. This awareness, this theological revelation, is instrumental in reviving true worship and continuation in Hellenic religion.
Now that there is a resource, now that people are aware, I’m seeing a lot more theological conversations out there about Ares. It’s not just Ares, though, it’s other gods, too. I certainly didn’t start the trend, but I’d like to think I helped add a little fuel to the fire and kept the spirit going. The more we bloggers play off each other, the more we create an actual worship community. I dare say we might even be having a renaissance.
With that, I’ll ask you, the reader, how you think I’m doing. Feel free to leave feedback in the comments, too! Hail Ares!