Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by Coëmgenu » Wed Apr 11, 2018 11:59 am

retrofuturist wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 11:56 am
Greetings Coëmgenu,

:offtopic:
Coëmgenu wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 11:41 am
If my post about the four extremes was off topic, than your post about the two extremes was as well.
No it's not. I'm allowed to refute false allegations made against me, as well as misrepresentations of my views... and so are you. You're merely fortunate that you cast such aspersions here rather than in the News section...
NewsTOS wrote:2. Whilst you may critique ideas, you may not attack or smear members who ascribe to such views, or who are perceived by you (rightly or wrongly) to be holders of those views.
Now, for the last time...

:focus:

Metta,
Paul. :)
This is a nasty trick, as I've said before. These posts are not off topic. We're having a conversation about exactly what the OP is about.
世尊在靈山會上拈華示眾眾皆默然唯迦葉破顏微笑世尊云
The Lord dwelt at the Vulture Peak with the assembly and plucked a flower as a teaching. The myriad totality were silent, save for Kāśyapa, whose face cracked in a faint smile. The Lord spoke.
吾有正法眼藏涅槃妙心實相無相微妙法門不立文字教外別傳付囑摩訶迦葉。
I have the treasure of the true dharma eye, I have nirvāṇa as wondrous citta, I know signless dharmatā, the subtle dharma-gate, which is not standing on written word, which is external to scriptures, which is a special dispensation, which is entrusted to Mahākāśyapa.

नस्वातोनापिपरतोनद्वाभ्यांनाप्यहेतुतः

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by Coëmgenu » Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:00 pm

I'm screenshotting this entire thread. I don't trust the moderation.
世尊在靈山會上拈華示眾眾皆默然唯迦葉破顏微笑世尊云
The Lord dwelt at the Vulture Peak with the assembly and plucked a flower as a teaching. The myriad totality were silent, save for Kāśyapa, whose face cracked in a faint smile. The Lord spoke.
吾有正法眼藏涅槃妙心實相無相微妙法門不立文字教外別傳付囑摩訶迦葉。
I have the treasure of the true dharma eye, I have nirvāṇa as wondrous citta, I know signless dharmatā, the subtle dharma-gate, which is not standing on written word, which is external to scriptures, which is a special dispensation, which is entrusted to Mahākāśyapa.

नस्वातोनापिपरतोनद्वाभ्यांनाप्यहेतुतः

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by retrofuturist » Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:04 pm

Greetings Coëmgenu,
Coëmgenu wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:00 pm
I'm screenshotting this entire thread. I don't trust the moderation.
No more disruptive meta-discussion please...
TOS2e wrote:Disruptive meta-discussion (i.e. discussion about discussion, including in-topic complaints about the existence of discussions that don't suit your preferences)
It's a violation of the Terms of Service.

As are...
TOS2d wrote:Unsubstantiated allegations against individuals
Please bring yourself under control.
TOS4 wrote:We expect you to be personally responsible for your own emotions and responses.

:focus:

Metta,
Paul. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by Coëmgenu » Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:09 pm

My posts are directly relevant to the OP, they just upset you. You think you are above the extremes in the scripture you quoted to me. You said as much here:

It is saying that this is the truth, Right View. Why would I willingly accept an ideology which deviates in such a way from Right View?

If you do not think that you are subscribe to views that are wrong, in short, if you think that you do not willing accept wrong ideologies, in turn, you cannot think that you are wrong on many other issues pertinent to the OP.

This is extremely relevant and based on your words. Not accusations from me.
世尊在靈山會上拈華示眾眾皆默然唯迦葉破顏微笑世尊云
The Lord dwelt at the Vulture Peak with the assembly and plucked a flower as a teaching. The myriad totality were silent, save for Kāśyapa, whose face cracked in a faint smile. The Lord spoke.
吾有正法眼藏涅槃妙心實相無相微妙法門不立文字教外別傳付囑摩訶迦葉。
I have the treasure of the true dharma eye, I have nirvāṇa as wondrous citta, I know signless dharmatā, the subtle dharma-gate, which is not standing on written word, which is external to scriptures, which is a special dispensation, which is entrusted to Mahākāśyapa.

नस्वातोनापिपरतोनद्वाभ्यांनाप्यहेतुतः

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by retrofuturist » Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:14 pm

Greetings Coëmgenu,
Coëmgenu wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:09 pm
My posts are directly relevant to the OP, they just upset you.
I'm not upset, and in fact, I find your insolence mildly entertaining. That said, I am genuinely disappointed at your ongoing failures to abide by all manner of aspects of the Terms of Service.
2d. Unsubstantiated allegations against individuals or traditions - including psychoanalyzing other members
How many informal warnings are required?

:shrug:

:focus:

Metta,
Paul. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by Coëmgenu » Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:15 pm

retrofuturist wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:14 pm
Greetings Coëmgenu,
Coëmgenu wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:09 pm
My posts are directly relevant to the OP, they just upset you.
I'm not upset, and in fact, I find your insolence mildly entertaining. That said, I am genuinely disappointed at your ongoing failures to abide by all manners of the Terms of Service.
2d. Unsubstantiated allegations against individuals or traditions - including psychoanalyzing other members
How many informal warnings are required?

:shrug:

:focus:

Metta,
Paul. :)
Such hubris. Such power-clinging.

I don't want to be a part of this forum with you running it.

I wont find out if you banned me or not.
世尊在靈山會上拈華示眾眾皆默然唯迦葉破顏微笑世尊云
The Lord dwelt at the Vulture Peak with the assembly and plucked a flower as a teaching. The myriad totality were silent, save for Kāśyapa, whose face cracked in a faint smile. The Lord spoke.
吾有正法眼藏涅槃妙心實相無相微妙法門不立文字教外別傳付囑摩訶迦葉。
I have the treasure of the true dharma eye, I have nirvāṇa as wondrous citta, I know signless dharmatā, the subtle dharma-gate, which is not standing on written word, which is external to scriptures, which is a special dispensation, which is entrusted to Mahākāśyapa.

नस्वातोनापिपरतोनद्वाभ्यांनाप्यहेतुतः

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by retrofuturist » Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:17 pm

Greetings Coëmgenu,
Coëmgenu wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:15 pm
Such hubris. Such power-clinging.
TOS4 wrote:At Dhamma Wheel, we respect your intellectual and spiritual autonomy. As such, the staff here will not enforce reverence to anyone or anything, nor censor speech gratuitously. In keeping with this respect for your autonomy, we expect you to be personally responsible for your own emotions and responses.
Coëmgenu wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:15 pm
I don't want to be a part of this forum with you running it.

I wont find out if you banned me or not.
TOS2h wrote:Any subject matter that may be off-topic or is intended to cause disruption or harm may be removed without notice. This includes, but is not restricted to:
2h. Goodbye Cruel Forum posts
:focus:

Metta,
Paul. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by DooDoot » Wed Apr 11, 2018 12:19 pm

Coëmgenu wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 11:18 am
That being said, I was expecting at least a mention of the Frankfurt school. After all, that is the conspiracy theory we are talking about here.
Coëmgenu. I think one cannot simply dismiss the Frankfurt school as a conspiracy theory. It was a real thing. There are people in the world attempting to make sense for themselves the social & worldly challenges they are facing. One cannot dismiss their angst, which influences them to become politically aligned in ways which may ultimately be unskilful. Myself, I spent the last two hours in solitude surrounding only by night, the wind & the ocean having a chat to the Buddha about the state of the world & the nature of the world. I have the Buddha to rely on. But we cannot simply dismiss the concerns of people with angst as 'conspiracy theories'. There was a Frankfurt school, which had an agenda, similar to any political group, to influence society & culture. With metta

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frankfurt_School

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by binocular » Wed Apr 11, 2018 6:17 pm

retrofuturist wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 4:57 am
You're totally misunderstanding and misrepresenting what was said.

I'm not saying that "your truth" is "the truth"... it's just that the purpose of this forum is not about trying to force "the truth" on anyone. Rather, it's about providing a space where people can share and explore ideas and views for themselves, without coercion. Providing that environment, and going through that interactive exploration with other Buddhists, rather than dogmatically accepting teachings from authority figures, actually maximises the likelihood that "your truth" will be aligned with "the truth" - which is not owned by anyone.
The language used often does not accord with that, though. Statements are usually made in the absolute, neutrality presuming form, not as I-messages. (Like right now, I'm using such an absolute form.) Using this absolute, neutrality presuming form, we get a row of dogmatic claims. That's not an environment in which one could actually explore things.
I'd suggest that what you experience as an "aggressive communication style" is actually the Dhamma Wheel staff getting sick and tired of the way you unfairly project your historical experiences with religious authorities onto us, as if we were personally responsible for any dukkha that befell you in former years. We do not deserve that, and it would be decent of you, and certainly appreciated by me, if from now on you were mindful to strive harder to differentiate between what staff actually do, versus the qualities and motives that you impute upon them based upon your former misadventures with people who are not us.

It would be decent and fair if you would stop projecting on me like that. And it's sad that you think I'm projecting my "authority issues" on you. It seems you think that people who have had some bad experiences with people in positions of power are 1. forever damaged by it, and 2. are forever automatically disqualified from having any insight into the workings of power, and so their statements must never be taken seriously or listened to, but only be considered mere whining, at best, or worse, offensive.
We do not deserve to be on the end of your unfair projections - enough is enough.
It's not that I merely "experience [your style] as an "aggressive communication style"", it's that the communication style often used by you, other moderators, and most members, is a textbook example of the aggressive communication style. "Aggressive communication style", "assertive communication style" etc. are terms, not merely my descriptions. There's a whole science to communication styles. I thought this was generally known. But apparently, I was wrong.
I thought that this being a Buddhist forum, people would be well aware of these things, since Right Speech is a Path Factor, both from the perspective of communication science, as well as specifically from the perspective of Buddhist philosophy. E.g. understanding the difference between saying "I like this book" and "This is a good book". I would think that a Buddhist would be very much interested in this type of difference, as in it, several central Buddhist themes culminate.

But, apparently, we are lightyears apart.
Every person we save is one less zombie to fight. -- World War Z

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by Upeksha » Wed Apr 11, 2018 10:26 pm

I'm going to out myself as someone who has taught political philosophy and ethics at university for many years.

The issue is very clear to me: it is the conflation of a holding and asserting an explicit political position (and also moderating on that basis) with a simultaneous claim of political neutrality. These are contradictory things.

The explicit political position is plainly a libertarian privileging of maximal individual agency - and its related epistemological underpinning of 'truth found in autonomy alone.' I think it's also fair to say that this position is in a robust dialectic with more collectivist, communitarian and egalitarian political positions. For example, the Frankfurt School is really Hegelian on the question of truth (i.e. truth emerges in a historical dialectic). Now the point is that I don't see anyone making deep arguments, say about Kant and Hegel and how truth or knowledge might emerge either individually or collectively. The Hegelian version is already presupposed to be wrong (or worse: some kind of egregious mind control fantasy). But in reality these are deep debates which keep philosophers very occupied. They should not be presumed settled.

Now, nothing wrong with having a political position. And defending it. And moderating in accord with its values.

What's wrong is assuming that this not a political position, that one is merely being politically neutral in espousing it and I suppose most alarmingly, denying the efficacy or potential truth value of positions which dissent from this one.

I have to say, in defense of Paul, that it is really difficult to hold all of this together in the mind and operate perfectly consistently as if some perfect manifestation of justice. Especially when things get heated or antagonistic.

But at the same time, there probably are some blind spots there, and that's what people seem to be picking up on.

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by retrofuturist » Wed Apr 11, 2018 10:31 pm

Greetings binocular,

Thank you for your well considered and well articulated comments.

I think the "I like this book" vs "This is a good book" dynamic you speak of is most relevant if the investigation being undertaken is collectivist in nature. For example, a group of investigators working together to solve a crime all have the same goal, the same interest, and same desired outcome. In that situation, the differentiation in meaning communicated by such subtleties in language may be important, and it may be critical in terms of differentiating hunches from leads, and evidence from theories etc.

In a Dhamma topic, the investigation is ultimately a personal one, despite being done in the presence of others. For example, if someone were to start up a topic on the first jhana, they might do so because they're looking to advance their meditation into jhana territory. There's no obligation though that others who participate are engaging in the same investigation - only that they respect the parameters of the topic and the sub-forum in which it was posted.

One person might participate hoping to more clearly differentiate between jhana as explained in the suttas, versus in the commentaries. One person might engage in the topic because they're interested in learning how and if their daily vipassana practice might lead to jhana. One person might engage in a topic because they're interested in whether attaining jhana might improve their satipatthana practice. One person might participate because they're curious about how essential jhana might be to the realisation of stream entry, so they can decide whether to read the suttas or sit on a cushion next weekend. Some other person may participate to drop a few crumbs of personal experience and lessons learned from their practice, in order to help others bypass common pitfalls. All of these investigations and motives for participation are all legitimate and valid, so long as they remain with in the bounds of the topic. However, to return to your point of differentiation, someone might be more forthright in such a conversation and say "this method is better than that method"... and they may have very good reasons for that, and it may well constitute Right Speech. That's ultimately for them to know, not us. As a participant in the conversation, if I were impacted by such subtleties, I might reflect on why they were so confident in their words etc. and ask them why they were so confident etc. but worst case, I should be capable of transposing what is said into frames of reference with which I'm more comfortable, and/or frames of reference which align with my own personal investigation. If something if useful to me, I pick it up and use it. If something if not useful to me, I leave it to the side.

That same dynamic of picking up and leaving to the side that applies there in Dhamma discussion, has parallel application when discussing news, politics and world events. When it came to hearing tidbits of Dhamma which people did not find beneficial to their practice or understanding, they were mostly capable of leaving it to the side, without any brouhaha. Unfortunately, people who are intolerant of alternative perspectives, alternative beliefs, untrusted news sources, modes of communication which do not placate their proclivities etc. seem far less adept or willing to simply "leave it to the side". They seemingly wish to cast it away and banish it, with a rush of dramatic emotionality and prevent others from seeing it. Frankly, it is the drama, and the intolerance and the urge to control what should and shouldn't even be heard on this forum, which is a more detrimental factor to this community than any "content" that these people characterise as being allegedly "harmful" or "anti-Semitic" or "racist" or whatever.

Staff have recently been reminded that they are at liberty to appropriately apply the ToS to address such intolerant behaviours, and as I mentioned earlier, they're well within their rights to exclude individuals from the News section if those individuals cannot exhibit the self-control, emotional maturity or interpersonal decency to engage in a manner defitting the rules of that section. Especially if they've been at it, causing such drama for a while now.

Metta,
Paul. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by retrofuturist » Wed Apr 11, 2018 10:41 pm

Greetings,
Upeksha wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 10:26 pm
The issue is very clear to me: it is the conflation of a holding and asserting an explicit political position (and also moderating on that basis) with a simultaneous claim of political neutrality. These are contradictory things.
Actually, it's far simpler than that... we police behaviours, not views.

I hope my above post to binocular gives some elaboration on how that principle applies in practice.

The problem comes when people are paranoid and distrusting of staff because their political views may differ, and what is merely moderation gets falsely accused of having ulterior motive.

If there is genuine cause for believing ulterior motives are at play, we have a formal complaints procedure to address those. Interestingly, formal complaints are at all-time historical lows, despite the prevalence of in-topic grievance mongering, and levels of forum activity which are about average, or slightly above average, in the history of this forum.

Metta,
Paul. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by Upeksha » Thu Apr 12, 2018 12:43 am

retrofuturist wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 10:41 pm
Greetings,
Upeksha wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 10:26 pm
The issue is very clear to me: it is the conflation of a holding and asserting an explicit political position (and also moderating on that basis) with a simultaneous claim of political neutrality. These are contradictory things.
Actually, it's far simpler than that... we police behaviours, not views.


Metta,
Paul. :)
This cannot be the case though, for the simple fact that the only thing you have access to are views. You do not have any access to actions or behaviors. At most you can try and discern mental intention - but is it really possible to adequately know another person's intention, especially given that this can only be judged on a little piece of linguistic expression that can be interpreted in many different ways?

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by retrofuturist » Thu Apr 12, 2018 1:00 am

Greetings Upeksha,
Upeksha wrote:
Thu Apr 12, 2018 12:43 am
This cannot be the case though, for the simple fact that the only thing you have access to are views. You do not have any access to actions or behaviors. At most you can try and discern mental intention - but is it really possible to adequately know another person's intention, especially given that this can only be judged on a little piece of linguistic expression that can be interpreted in many different ways?
We're not at all reliant upon intention to moderate this forum. Intentions can only be inferred, but behaviours and actions can actually be observed. I find it strange you insist otherwise.

The vast majority of ToS clauses make no recourse whatsoever to predicting the member's underlying intention. The only possible exception to that relates to "any subject matter that may be off-topic or is intended to cause disruption or harm may be removed without notice."

How would we discern "intention"? It's a good question. In fact a moderator recently posed that question to me in relation to a specific instance, to which I responded...
The easiest instance is when they could be deemed off-topic, in which case they can be regarded as such.

Intention is harder to gauge, and to the extent that it is viable to do so, it is preferable to engage with the member to determine their intention... or if that's not possible, at least have an open mind about what it could be.
When asked how much liberty moderators actually have to make these assessments I advised...
You have the liberty to make such judgements, but where time permits, it would be better to do so as a team. If you believe urgent action is required, ensure there is proper record keeping, so that decisions can be revisited and reversed if necessary.
These are our practices, and they're based on over a decade worth of involvement in the governance of online Buddhist forums. With all due respect to you (and with genuine appreciation for your candour throughout this conversation), you have been here at Dhamma Wheel for less than two months, and may be getting caught up in the prevailing rabble-rousing activism and mob mentality from a vocal minority, which pre-dates your participation by literally years. I say that not to discount your perspective, but to suggest instead that if you genuinely believe something is not right here in terms of moderation, follow the Dhamma Wheel complaints procedure and see how that goes. Without having followed the processes yourself through to fruition, how can you come to any serious determination that processes are broken, nevermind diagnose their root cause?

Metta,
Paul. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by DooDoot » Thu Apr 12, 2018 1:27 am

Upeksha wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 10:26 pm
For example, the Frankfurt School is really Hegelian on the question of truth (i.e. truth emerges in a historical dialectic). Now the point is that I don't see anyone making deep arguments, say about Kant and Hegel and how truth or knowledge might emerge either individually or collectively. The Hegelian version is already presupposed to be wrong (or worse: some kind of egregious mind control fantasy). But in reality these are deep debates which keep philosophers very occupied. They should not be presumed settled.
Possibly because many have not perceived the views of Kant and Hegel have affected their society in an adverse way; that the ideas of Kant and Hegel remained as "philosophy" rather than actual "popular culture". As an individual that claims to have taught ethics at university, I did not read any ethical considerations in your posts that consider the matter in a Buddhist manner, i.e., the considering ethical distinctions of wholesome (kusala) & unwholesome (akusala).

So please explain exactly those ideas that are common to Kant and Hegel & the Frankfurt School. For example, did Kant and Hegel teach to engage in sexual promiscuity or to rebel against parents & the society? Did Kant and Hegel teach identitariaism & write books such as The Authoritarian Personality', which appeared to deem not agreeing with the Frankfurt School a 'mental illness'?

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