Tuesday, May 06, 2014

How to Use and Navigate My Blog

By Catholic Apologist Dave Armstrong 

When you get to the home page, you'll see seven basic categories listed at the top, underneath the photos and title: http://socrates58.blogspot.com/

* Home
* My Books
* Catholic Apologetics
* Christian Worldview
* Non-Catholic -Isms
* About Me
* Resume

The home page can also be accessed by http://www.biblicalcatholic.com/

"Home" brings you to the home / main page (that's an easy one). "My Books" takes you to my main book page, that lists every book (currently 44 total), with convenient links to purchase instantly in many different ways (including instant download for e-books). This is how I create most of my own income. I do this work full-time, and have since December 2001.

The next three categories are the "heart" or "meat and potatoes" of the blog: with almost all of my nearly 2,500 posts. "Catholic Apologetics" lists all the distinctively Catholic doctrines and people (e.g., Cardinal Newman and Chesterton pages). When you click on it, you get to the "card catalogue" type chart that is a method I have used all the way from the beginning of my original website (begun in 1997).

You'll find 24 categories (three boxes of eight each): arranged alphabetically. Once you go to a particular "topical" web page (I have more than 50 separate ones total), there are almost always further subcategories, to help you select what you need. For example, on my "Bible, Tradition, Canon, and Sola Scriptura" page (the most extensive under this broad classification), there are nine sub-topics, listed at the top:

I. Relationship of the Bible to the Church
II. Tradition (Apostolic)
III. Sola Scriptura (Scripture as the Only Infallible Authority)
IV. Private Judgment
V. Perspicuity (Clearness) of Scripture
VI. Material and Formal Sufficiency of Scripture
VII. The Canon of Scripture
VIII. Deuterocanonical Books (So-Called "Apocrypha")
IX. Alleged Biblical Contradictions and Difficulties

The next broad category is "Christian Worldview": short for "General Christian Worldview and Ethics." This is less "distinctively Catholic" and is devoted mostly to topics and issues where -- broadly speaking -- "traditional" trinitarian Christians pretty much agree. It has eight web pages: C. S. Lewis, Life Issues, "Philosophy, Science, and Christianity," Sexual and Gender Issues, Christmas, "Political, Ethical, and Moral Issues," "Romantic and Imaginative Theology" (think, Tolkien and George MacDonald), and "War and Peace".

"Non-Catholic -Isms" contains web pages that critique or describe many different worldviews besides Catholicism, including Anti-Catholicism, Atheism, John CalvinCalvinism, Martin Luther, Lutheranism, Heresies, Judaism, Liberal Theology, and Orthodoxy (12 web pages total).

"About Me" has lots of personal stuff from different angles: some of it not "theological" at all. If you want to get to know me as a person, and see what I am about, beyond my apologetics and theological arguments, this is the place to go. It lists 24 different web pages that you can select.

"Resume" goes to a single web page: "My Literary Resume," which is literally a listing of all the "official" apologetics work I have done (including much beyond the blog itself) including published magazine articles, books, radio appearances, and cartoon tracts. It gives further information about credentials and affiliations, and includes many personal recommendations and a summary "About Me" section at the end.

This is how one navigates my site. Anyone could learn it in a half-hour max. I get lots of letters asking me, "do you have a paper on so-and-so?" Frankly, I don't have time to reply to all the letters like that, that come in. I provide the "stuff"; folks need to learn how to find it on my site (this is the "training session" to do that), rather than always asking me to find it for them.

It's not difficult for anyone to learn to search and navigate and find what they need. I try to make the blog as user-friendly as I can. There are main categories and sub-categories; also a search bar at the very top of the sidebar. If you learn to type in important keywords for what you're looking for, you'll find something almost every time.

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