Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

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SDC
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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby SDC » Mon Feb 08, 2016 5:57 pm

Sein wrote:May be the "intellectual" atmosphere make people consider twice before posting then? Don't know if it good or bad.


Very possible.

Reminds me of a very sad interaction from a few years back when one of our resident Pali experts was responding in a thread. By page two another member had begun to object to the technical terminology being used, but instead of asking for clarification this member just went about accusing the poster of talking over people with "his Pali prowess". I'll never forget it. Knowledge was the enemy. The member who was sharing their knowledge of Pali - instead of being seen as a valued resource - was perceived as trying to make others feel stupid. :(

For me when I see someone post something that I do not understand (due to the depth of the words or the technical presentation), I try to do everything I can to understand it. And if I fail to do so I will either ask for clarification or I will double down my own efforts to become familiar with what that person is saying so that the next time I may understand. And if that effort fails, then I reconcile the fact that if I want to speak on those terms that I have to work hard in order to do it. But by no means am I going to ask that member to altogether dial back their mode of responding for my own sake.

The membership on DW as a whole have done a very poor job of protecting and appreciating two types of members: those who know very little and those who know very much. The former are scolded for their confusion and the latter for their abundance of knowledge. The only "acceptable" member is one who shows they know something but not too much.

I could rattle off the names of several members who's knowledge is beyond value, but due to the resistance (or lack of appreciation) they have encountered over the years have either left altogether or just pop up from time to time. That is not to say that one or two were not quite arrogant, but it should be worth the hassle in most cases IMO. While I do not believe one needs to be a Pali expert in order to make progress, that does not mean I don't rely heavily on the work of such experts to clarify meaning (because I do), and I would much rather be humbled by their expertise then be without it.

Just my take.

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SDC
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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby SDC » Mon Feb 08, 2016 6:21 pm

Sea Turtle wrote:Perhaps could be a more supportive/welcoming/inclusive environment for female practitioners? (Approximately 50% of the human population, so a good potential membership base!) :thumbsup:


History on this forum speaks for itself. There is no need to dredge up some of those awful memories, but those who remember know that it is not a mystery why we had a mass exodus of females a few years ago. Unfortunately DW has never recovered that base.

I'll let out a deep and dark secret about the aggro approach to posting that we see every so often (usually by males): it is incredibly fragile. In fact, the harder a member is asserting themselves, the more uncertain it is likely they are with what they are asserting. Because if they really knew it, they would not have to try so hard to say it --- they would just say it, move along, and hope that another can understand it. I think females would be more inclined to jump in knowing that the " :x pissing contests :x " are in fact the DW children playing and it is quite easy to talk above or beside them. Unfortunately the childish incidents are probably not going to go away, but there are many male members who ignore them as well and you should feel no need to join in.

dagon
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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby dagon » Mon Feb 08, 2016 7:51 pm

SDC wrote:
Sea Turtle wrote:Perhaps could be a more supportive/welcoming/inclusive environment for female practitioners? (Approximately 50% of the human population, so a good potential membership base!) :thumbsup:


History on this forum speaks for itself. There is no need to dredge up some of those awful memories, but those who remember know that it is not a mystery why we had a mass exodus of females a few years ago. Unfortunately DW has never recovered that base.

I'll let out a deep and dark secret about the aggro approach to posting that we see every so often (usually by males): it is incredibly fragile. In fact, the harder a member is asserting themselves, the more uncertain it is likely they are with what they are asserting. Because if they really knew it, they would not have to try so hard to say it --- they would just say it, move along, and hope that another can understand it. I think females would be more inclined to jump in knowing that the " :x pissing contests :x " are in fact the DW children playing and it is quite easy to talk above or beside them. Unfortunately the childish incidents are probably not going to go away, but there are many male members who ignore them as well and you should feel no need to join in.


Sorry but it is not just a historical event - it continues... I suspect that I could even identify one of the recent threads where male chauvinistic attitudes were used to dismiss female posters. It is easy to be dismissive or discount the effect of some of those types of posts on the female members - when we have the same bruises then maybe we can be more understanding. Saying that female members should "ignore them as well and you should feel no need to join in" does not cut it. What is the fact is that without the ongoing support of "that 50%" of the community Buddhism would have been very luck to survive.

Many (most?) DW members are male and western. A lot have wives who are not Buddhist but provide the male members with acceptance or support without which their practice would be a lot harder to maintain. I know and respect the attitudes of DW site owner / Admin and Mods have to the immense contribution that women can, and aspire, to make. As a community there is a lot of potential development that we can make in our attitudes - in the process we may even enhance out own development.

The rest of the post I totally agree with.

metta
dagon

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SDC
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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby SDC » Mon Feb 08, 2016 8:27 pm

dagon wrote:Sorry but it is not just a historical event - it continues... I suspect that I could even identify one of the recent threads where male chauvinistic attitudes were used to dismiss female posters. It is easy to be dismissive or discount the effect of some of those types of posts on the female members - when we have the same bruises then maybe we can be more understanding. Saying that female members should "ignore them as well and you should feel no need to join in" does not cut it. What is the fact is that without the ongoing support of "that 50%" of the community Buddhism would have been very luck to survive.

Many (most?) DW members are male and western. A lot have wives who are not Buddhist but provide the male members with acceptance or support without which their practice would be a lot harder to maintain. I know and respect the attitudes of DW site owner / Admin and Mods have to the immense contribution that women can, and aspire, to make. As a community there is a lot of potential development that we can make in our attitudes - in the process we may even enhance out own development.

The rest of the post I totally agree with.

metta
dagon


I think you may have misunderstood me. I wasn't saying the "just ignore/feel no need to join the antics" as the solution to the issue (because there is indeed more to it), but just making members aware that the aggressive attitudes are often not the measure of a good post and that such behavior, IMO, is not something anyone should aspire to. Merely letting people know that I personally do not find it appealing and work very hard to not get involved with it. Sometimes I feel that our female members think that this aggressive approach is the ideal around here and I can assure them that many many people (both male and female) are over it and have been over it for quite some time.

And as far as the mention of past history that was for information and not to say that the problem is not still here.

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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby dagon » Mon Feb 08, 2016 9:08 pm

SDC wrote:I think you may have misunderstood me. I wasn't saying the "just ignore/feel no need to join the antics" as the solution to the issue (because there is indeed more to it), but just making members aware that the aggressive attitudes are often not the measure of a good post and that such behavior, IMO, is not something anyone should aspire to. Merely letting people know that I personally do not find it appealing and work very hard to not get involved with it. Sometimes I feel that our female members think that this aggressive approach is the ideal around here and I can assure them that many many people (both male and female) are over it and have been over it for quite some time.

And as far as the mention of past history that was for information and not to say that the problem is not still here.


Apologises for my misunderstanding and thank you for the clarification.

I know there is a lot that goes on behind the scenes that (thankfully) most of us are unaware of. If the members want to see DW grow / improve / become more inclusive then we need to lift our game. Some of the negative responses to problematic posts would be reduced if we complied with the TOS and reported problem posts rather than ignoring them or jumping into the fray. In my experience the mods have been very responsive. Thanks for you efforts :anjali:

metta
dagon

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samseva
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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby samseva » Tue Feb 09, 2016 3:55 am

SDC wrote:Very possible.

Reminds me of a very sad interaction from a few years back when one of our resident Pali experts was responding in a thread. By page two another member had begun to object to the technical terminology being used, but instead of asking for clarification this member just went about accusing the poster of talking over people with "his Pali prowess". I'll never forget it. Knowledge was the enemy. The member who was sharing their knowledge of Pali - instead of being seen as a valued resource - was perceived as trying to make others feel stupid. :(

For me when I see someone post something that I do not understand (due to the depth of the words or the technical presentation), I try to do everything I can to understand it. And if I fail to do so I will either ask for clarification or I will double down my own efforts to become familiar with what that person is saying so that the next time I may understand. And if that effort fails, then I reconcile the fact that if I want to speak on those terms that I have to work hard in order to do it. But by no means am I going to ask that member to altogether dial back their mode of responding for my own sake.

The membership on DW as a whole have done a very poor job of protecting and appreciating two types of members: those who know very little and those who know very much. The former are scolded for their confusion and the latter for their abundance of knowledge. The only "acceptable" member is one who shows they know something but not too much.

I could rattle off the names of several members who's knowledge is beyond value, but due to the resistance (or lack of appreciation) they have encountered over the years have either left altogether or just pop up from time to time. That is not to say that one or two were not quite arrogant, but it should be worth the hassle in most cases IMO. While I do not believe one needs to be a Pali expert in order to make progress, that does not mean I don't rely heavily on the work of such experts to clarify meaning (because I do), and I would much rather be humbled by their expertise then be without it.

Just my take.

Thank you, SDC. That was very informative.

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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby samseva » Tue Feb 09, 2016 3:57 am

I don't think growing Dhamma Wheel as an end goal is a good idea (a huge forum is much more difficult to moderate and can easily get out of hand). We should instead individually focus on practicing right speech and right intention, which will inadvertently result in new members being drawn to a positive environment to discuss teachings.

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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby SarathW » Tue Feb 09, 2016 4:06 am

So you like to see less Arahants than more Arahants?
:tongue:
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby The Thinker » Tue Feb 09, 2016 6:27 am

This is still just about the best forum around, yes we may lack patience, and yes our monkey minds run riot at times, Sometimes the forum lacks genuine questions from members, not sure if this is because a few ask many questions already having knowledge of their answers in the teacher sense?, which is useful for starting subject but makes an uneasy arena for new members with less knowledge.

Still great and the best, plenty going on all considered! :clap:
"Watch your heart, observe. Be the observer, be the knower, not the condition" Ajahn Sumedho volume5 - The Wheel Of Truth

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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby dxm_dxm » Wed Feb 10, 2016 5:15 am

Guys, with all my respect, you know nothing about how a forum works...

Few people on a forum are interested only in information. The huge majority of forum members are interested in narcissistic supply. This does not mean adulation, it means simple attention. I don't remember when was the last time I got adulated on a forum. The more narcissistic a person is, the more this tendency will manifest in him. It is well known that people inclined towards religion are way more narcissistic than the average. All people are more or less narcissistic otherwise they wouldn't be practicing buddhism. So this does not apply only to the new-agey recently enlightened guy that pops up. This applies to all people.

This forum is by far the driest place in terms of narcissistic supply possible because this is the policy around here. If you think about it, this may very well be the driest such place in the hole internet. I do not think this should be changed because there is a reason why the buddhist attitude is like that towards narcissistic supply. The fact that the forum is like this made me a better buddhist and especially a better forumist. Look at my first posts over here to see the hunger within me. I was banned on every forum that I ever posted, even the drugs forum. I was the author of 2 infamous threads on 2+2forum nominated for the yearly awards. When desperate with money, I once wrote a topic on the poker staking forum (people that I disgust, an idea that I disgust) with such overwhelming arrogance that I immediately got banned (for looking too good to be true,so a scammer) and 3 topics were opened about me after I left and they even got popular. My topic was a piece of art. I once earned "the bulshit thread of the year" brown medal on a forum under my avatar. Everywhere I ever posted I tried to split the forum in 2. Only decency I ever had was that I never claimed enlightenment over here. I only claimed second jhana and 4th "nana" (of course with no serious meditation behind it)

So I would say the attitude over here had a positive influence making me way more down to earth. You are doing no favor to somebody by increasing his delusion and narcissism. This is the very thing buddhism is trying to relinquish. This is why most of the people that came here go away and maybe return in the future. There is no narcissistic supply over here and there is plenty on new agey forums.

It should also be noted that buddhism as a religion is dry as a rock compared to christianity and islam in this regard. The more narcissistic the more praise worthy you are in christianity. The warior of the light you are, a guy who can indulge in all narcissistic pleasures and even take more pleasure from seen that as something good. The way you already are is perfection if you are a narcissist. Only narcissistic supply you get in buddhism is because it's a different religion and you are in a way more special but that is 0,1% of what I got before. At least it's something to keep you going in the start. Buddhism is so against this thing that it really makes you change a little. It is also against the christian tendency to convert other people in the idea that even if poorly understood this "sure is better than nothing". There is no need to give such supply to people just to make them stick here and "guide them to the right path". Many of us with me included still have this christian tendencies and way of reasoning.
I just think the teaching available by way of Theravada isn’t very appealing to the masses.

I don't think growing Dhamma Wheel as an end goal is a good idea (a huge forum is much more difficult to moderate and can easily get out of hand).
Completely agree with that
:anjali:

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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby SarathW » Wed Feb 10, 2016 6:13 am

Hi DD
Very impressive resume whit impressive credentials. ;)

My personal opinion is we should take Buddha's message to as many as possible.
Even the knowledge of the very basic idea could make a great difference to many people.
I personally do not think Buddhism is boring.
I think Buddha has give us a problem (Nibbana) that we will never be able to solve.
Only way we can solve this problem is by not thinking about any problems what so ever!
But we love solving problems. If we do not have one, we make a new one.

Managing Dhamma Wheel will not be a problem.
Dhamma Wheel have an organic growth so it will have the organic support.
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby The Thinker » Wed Feb 10, 2016 10:38 am

Agree SaratnW, My own posts about other subjects are now contained to the lower realms on this forum, and I much prefer to read and learn from the more experienced insights of members and monks in the higher realms, basically, I am no authority and respect those with advanced knowledge and capabilities in their own transmission of the teachings.

The embarrassment of poor grammar skills and lack of understanding remain a drawback for me, I think this is a shared experience. What I will say is that the engagement in conversation with both Facilitators and members on this forum is superb and better than any other Buddhist forums I have read.
"Watch your heart, observe. Be the observer, be the knower, not the condition" Ajahn Sumedho volume5 - The Wheel Of Truth

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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby dxm_dxm » Wed Feb 10, 2016 12:22 pm

Hi DD
Very impressive resume whit impressive credentials.

:D :D :D :D :D

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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby DC2R » Thu Mar 03, 2016 3:42 am

samseva wrote:I don't think growing Dhamma Wheel as an end goal is a good idea (a huge forum is much more difficult to moderate and can easily get out of hand). We should instead individually focus on practicing right speech and right intention, which will inadvertently result in new members being drawn to a positive environment to discuss teachings.

I agree. Dhamma Wheel is another place to facilitate the spread of dhamma, whether it's to one person or ten people. Our goal should not be to grow and become the forum for Theravada Buddhism.

You yourself must strive.
The Buddhas only point the way.
Those meditative ones who tread the path
are released from the bonds of Mara.

—Dhp 276
May the blessings of the Buddha, the Dhamma, and the Sangha always be firmly established in your hearts.

http://txti.es/theravada

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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby SarathW » Thu Mar 03, 2016 3:51 am

The third factor involved in giving is the gift itself, which can be either material or immaterial. Dhamma-dana, the gift of the noble teachings, is said by the Buddha to excel all other gifts (Dhammapada, 354). Those who expound his teachings — monks who preach sermons or recite from the Tipitaka, teachers of meditation — frequently share the Truth, thus practicing the highest kind of generosity. Those of us who are not qualified to teach the Dhamma can give the gift of the Dhamma in other ways. We can donate Dhamma books or pay for the translation or publication of a rare or new manuscript propagating the Buddha-Word. We can discuss the Dhamma informally and encourage others to keep precepts or to take up meditation. We might write an explanation of some aspect of the Dhamma for the benefit of others. Giving cash or labor to a meditation center or helping support a meditation teacher can also be considered the gift of the Dhamma, as the purpose of the center and the teacher is the transmission of the Buddha's teaching.


http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/auth ... el367.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

ps:
I just noticed.
Dhamma Wheel membership has now gone above 10000 members.
:clap:
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby Pumo » Sat Mar 05, 2016 5:42 am

SarathW wrote:Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

I am visiting Dhamma Wheel for almost two years .
The users on line in a given time is less than 100 most of the time.
This is less than 0.5% of the registered users.
I expect that should be around 10.0%
I think we should aim for 5.0%


I don't think that aiming specifically for a percentage of users online is really relevant, as the value of this place is the deep Buddhist discussions that you can freely engage into, and also the guidance of the experts for beginners like me and others, not how many participants it has.

I've seen some actually stagnant forums (like one dedicated to a Videogame where I'm a participant user, you should see that. :roll: ), and this one doesn't seems to be the case.
I'm a very new user here, so here you got a living proof that this forum is growing. :thumbsup:

SarathW wrote:I suggest we make a voting type questioner for member who leave the forum.
Every new comer should be alerted to this questioner at the introduction or at the time of joining.

Suggested questions:
a) Just lost the initial interest in Buddhism.
b) I am intimidated by the advance discussions . I have nothing to contribute
c) I felt Buddhism is as bad as any other religion.

etc
:thinking:


I could also think of another couple of options:
- "I don't have the time I would have liked to participate in the forum".
It's a common thing for some users on many forums I've visited.

- "I forgot I registered here!"
This also happens a lot. Some people are compulsive when registering to forums and just register for the sake of it. :P

Regarding its popularity, it seems it's one of the most popular Buddhist forums, as almost everytime I searched on Google for some specific question regarding Buddhism, I was able to find a relevant result from a discussion on this forum.
It also appears in a very good position on Google search, so it may be not as unpopular as you perceive. ;)

Anyway, one way or another, I'm really glad that I got the opportunity to find this forum, as I consider all of you members the closest thing to a Sangha I can have near me, considering the low rating of Buddhism at my place. :group:
'may all beings be happy at heart.' - Karaniya Metta Sutta :buddha1:

SarathW
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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby SarathW » Sat Mar 05, 2016 6:48 am

Regarding its popularity, it seems it's one of the most popular Buddhist forums, as almost everytime I searched on Google for some specific question regarding Buddhism, I was able to find a relevant result from a discussion on this forum.
Perhaps this is another reason for the increase in uses online in a given time. This is a very positive statistics as it shows the usefulness of this forum
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

lostitude
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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby lostitude » Sun Mar 06, 2016 1:28 pm

Sorry if this has been mentionned already, but I think the forum's general looks would deserve some revamping. If you compare it to dhaRma Wheel, then the latter looks a lot more modern, more 'professional', and more attractive.
When I discovered both fora at the same time, I unconsciously felt like posting on dhaRma wheel more, because DhaMma Wheel looks old, more amateurish => less used and probably less active. It's mainly about the color codes and the fonts I think.

I hope my criticism won't be taken as harsh, I just wanted to describe my first impression as a newcomer to these two websites. Now that I know them better, I definitely feel dhamma wheel is a better place for me, but this feeling was far from immediate due to the external appearance of this forum.

Edit: Wow I've just visited dharma wheel again and realised the only difference is in the colors! Yet this had a huge effect on me at first, strange...

SarathW
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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby SarathW » Tue Dec 06, 2016 7:38 pm

SarathW wrote:Dhamma Wheel is reaching a very important mile stone by nearing it's membership to 10000 members.
I have noticed its users on line has grown remarkably to averaging about 140 users at a given moment.
That is a substantial improvement to when I did my post on 7/7/14 when it was 0.95%.
Now users on line averaging 1.4% (ie 140/9993*100)
It is a 50% increase from 0.95% to 1.4%
Congratulation to all for who work so hard to get the forum to a such high level of achievement specially to David and the management team not to mention the regular contributors and readers.
:clap:

It appears there is a high level of down time.
I believe it is due to the high traffic.

It is just the nature of Samsara (Dukkha) . :)


Uses online has grown to a remarkable 2.27% (ie: 250 average users / 11227 total members X100)
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: Why Dhammawheel is not growing?

Postby Jetavan » Wed Dec 07, 2016 1:29 pm

lostitude wrote:Edit: Wow I've just visited dharma wheel again and realised the only difference is in the colors! Yet this had a huge effect on me at first, strange...

Color is an upaya-kusala.


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