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Since Urantia is an experimental world, there is clearly value in conducting experiments to try doing things differently than they've been done before. For that reason, I'd like to ask if we can do an experiment right here on the Urantia Book study group forum.

We are currently seeing evidence of the dysfunction and lack of cohesive study methods due to the ability of some members to block other members; thereby, not seeing those other members' contributions to our discussions. This creates redundancy of posting the same UB quotes and the same points, while at the same time, the phenomenon of 'two ships that pass in the night' with regard to someone making a compelling point but it not being picked up on or even continued in the discussion due to the blocking feature.

I propose an experiment in which the forum administrator disables the block feature, and study group members must rely on their own self-discipline to scroll past the communications that they find offensive, while still at least noticing what is being shared and discussed. Is that too much to ask from a sincere group of adult study group members?

Can we try it for a limited time and see what happens? 6 months? Can we embrace uncertainty and embark on an adventure together on this decimal planet? Who's game?


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I am game. But this can only be answered by the Administrators.


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I agree with that too. Of course, everyone needs to prove that the blocking feature is no longer necessary, like our wisdom teeth! Evolutionary progress!


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I've only known 2 people to use it in 8 years here. It is a childish choice of head in the sand or what I don't see doesn't exist. People are always responsible for their responses to all situations, circumstances, and events. If you cannot manage your response, then you demonstrate an immaturity that requires work on your response-ability. Over reacting is emotionally immature. An opportunity for growth.

One cannot deny what is confronted but one can learn to ignore it or cope with it or respond to it. And gain experiential wisdom thereby. But in a classroom setting of students it is inappropriate and makes discussion clumsey, circular, redundant, and frustrating for all. Just another opinion.


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It may be helpful to all to review this thread from last year:

https://truthbook.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=5475&p=71297&hilit=block+member#p71297

I especially recommend the comments of the admin - near the bottom of the page.

It is unfortunate that anyone here finds this technique of identifying a "foe" and then blocking their posts from their view is in any way a positive step toward conflict resolution. Nor is it a good model to present to the world insofar as how to get along with each other.

We also have a useful feature on this site called "private messaging," wherein one member may communicate with another out of view of the general audience. I highly recommend this technique, as it may provide two members who are in a personal dispute to discover the humanity and motivation of one another in a more personal way. I suspect that oftentimes, this might effectively "humanize" us to each other in a way that the general anonymity of the Forum format may not be able to do.

When we understand each other better, we might even learn to love one another more. This would certainly have the potential to elevate our discussions.

Quote:
100:4.4 In physical life the senses tell of the existence of things; mind discovers the reality of meanings; but the spiritual experience reveals to the individual the true values of life. These high levels of human living are attained in the supreme love of God and in the unselfish love of man. If you love your fellow men, you must have discovered their values. Jesus loved men so much because he placed such a high value upon them. You can best discover values in your associates by discovering their motivation. If someone irritates you, causes feelings of resentment, you should sympathetically seek to discern his viewpoint, his reasons for such objectionable conduct. If once you understand your neighbor, you will become tolerant, and this tolerance will grow into friendship and ripen into love.


https://truthbook.com/urantia-book/paper-100-religion-in-human-experience#U100_4_4

If we are unable to do this publicly, perhaps we can achieve it privately, and then show the fruits of such communication in our public discussion.


MaryJo


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I do find it unfortunate, but the marking of somebody as "foe" is sometimes necessary when you honestly cannot get along or find someone's posts nonconstructive to the conversation.

The best way I feel would be to make no noise about who you are blocking. So if you do block somebody, they best not know it.


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William S. wrote:
I do find it unfortunate, but the marking of somebody as "foe" is sometimes necessary when you honestly cannot get along or find someone's posts nonconstructive to the conversation.


I agree William. It's also the only mechanism available to stop the negative impact of ad hominem attacks on the psyche. Society, and this forum is a small society, has the responsibility to provide a fair and peaceful opportunity for education, a form of self-perpetuation. Every human right has an associated social duty to protect both the group and the individual. If the society cannot, or will not protect the rights of the individual, don't you think the individual has the right to protect them himself? Isn't the best way the most fair and peaceful manner available, a way that is not defensive? Jesus didn't bother to defend his rights.

(794.12) 70:9.17 Society cannot offer equal rights to all, but it can promise to administer the varying rights of each with fairness and equity. It is the business and duty of society to provide the child of nature with a fair and peaceful opportunity to pursue self-maintenance, participate in self-perpetuation, while at the same time enjoying some measure of self-gratification, the sum of all three constituting human happiness.

(772.7) 69:1.4 2. The institutions of self-perpetuation. These are the establishments of society growing out of sex hunger, maternal instinct, and the higher tender emotions of the races. They embrace the social safeguards of the home and the school, of family life, education, ethics, and religion. They include marriage customs, war for defense, and home building.

(614.4) 54:1.9 No being, in the exercise of his supposed personal liberty, has a right to deprive any other being of those privileges of existence conferred by the Creators and duly respected by all their loyal associates, subordinates, and subjects.

(1368.6) 124:2.4 Perhaps his most unusual and outstanding trait was his unwillingness to fight for his rights.


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Isn't the best way the most fair and peaceful manner available, a way that is not defensive?


So, is actually getting to know someone through private messaging not a fair and peaceful manner that is not defensive? It seems to me that blocking someone is very defensive. Or is the anonymity here an attractive feature that you (and maybe others) are reluctant to breach? Just curious to know your thoughts...

Thanks...

MaryJo


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maryjo606 wrote:
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Isn't the best way the most fair and peaceful manner available, a way that is not defensive?


So, is actually getting to know someone through private messaging not a fair and peaceful manner that is not defensive? It seems to me that blocking someone is very defensive. Or is the anonymity here an attractive feature that you (and maybe others) are reluctant to breach? Just curious to know your thoughts...

Thanks...

MaryJo


Why would anyone want to get to know a person who chronically and maliciously abuses them? Do you think the right thing to do in the middle of an assault is to say, "Wait, can't we just get to know each other before you beat the crap out of me?" Do you think the wife who is constantly battered by her husband should just try harder to get to know him? No, everyone knows that's ludicrous. So what should one do when constantly attacked? One either fights back or protects oneself. Jesus did not fight back, neither do I.

I am not the only victim of this persistently negative behavior. Almost everyone on this forum has complained about it. Ad hominem is the deterrent to smooth functioning of this forum, not blocking. If there is going to be outrage, why not direct it at the real cause? Shouldn't there be zero tolerance to open hostility? If that were the case blocking would not be necessary. There would be nothing to block.

Don't forget, it's the attack that is being blocked, not the person. The use of the word "foe" is unfortunate.


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katroofjebus wrote:
maryjo606 wrote:
Quote:
Isn't the best way the most fair and peaceful manner available, a way that is not defensive?


So, is actually getting to know someone through private messaging not a fair and peaceful manner that is not defensive? It seems to me that blocking someone is very defensive. Or is the anonymity here an attractive feature that you (and maybe others) are reluctant to breach? Just curious to know your thoughts...

Thanks...

MaryJo


Why would anyone want to get to know a person who chronically and maliciously abuses them? Do you think the right thing to do in the middle of an assault is to say, "Wait, can't we just get to know each other before you beat the crap out of me?" Do you think the wife who is constantly battered by her husband should just try harder to get to know him? No, everyone knows that's ludicrous. So what should one do when constantly attacked? One either fights back or protects oneself. Jesus did not fight back, neither do I.

I am not the only victim of this persistently negative behavior. Almost everyone on this forum has complained about it. Ad hominem is the deterrent to smooth functioning of this forum, not blocking. If there is going to be outrage, why not direct it at the real cause? Shouldn't there be zero tolerance to open hostility? If that were the case blocking would not be necessary. There would be nothing to block.

Don't forget, it's the attack that is being blocked, not the person. The use of the word "foe" is unfortunate.


Okay....this craziness and deceit has really gone on long enough Bonita. I don't know what game you're playing here but its just too weird. You act as if you don't know me yet we have known each other very well for 8 years, forum friends and fellow students with thousands of friendly posts between us.

You have known me and do know me. I am no stranger to you even though you treat me like one here. Why do you pretend to be so abused and defensive here but not at the other group? You are creating a false persona and narrative here that is simply bizarre. You pretend you don't know BB or Rick or Nigel or nodomanoV/Enno and others here that you have actually known for years.

You do know me. Already. But suddenly you appear here to teach me some lesson and hound me no matter the topic and now play innocent and timid victim when everyone who knows you knows that is an ironic fiction. The Queen of Literalists and UB Literalism. My mentor and teacher.

It saddens me that you disclaim knowing me after so many years. I hope we find some bridge that crosses this chasm of recent and tragic disharmony. It is a person you block....one you know very well. This behavior is very personal and taken personally. Why do you pretend otherwise? Why such duplicity here of all places I wonder?

Of course, you cannot see this as you have now blocked me. Oh well....sigh.....

So sad..... :( :-s :-& :?:

Bradly

For those unfamiliar with the work and historical record here of her years of posts, I recommend such a study of the archive for true scholarship....and rather blunt literalism.

119 pages of posts...an amazing body of work here before my time. And never has she been shy or fragile or defenseless before now.

search.php?author_id=1436&sr=posts


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Well, Agon D. Onter, so.much for your experiment! Back to the drawing board. But at least we get to see a splendid example of a situation that should be resolved via personal messages instead of exposing the whole forum to these tantrums. But thanks for trying!

In the New Testament Matthew's gospel states "Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother." I couldn't find the parallel passage in the UB and I'm short of time, but if anyone cares to add it please do!


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Attempted pm engagement months ago by a mutual friend of us both...unresponsive. It appears Kat does not wish to acknowledge Bonita for some unknown reason. But Bonita is a very thoughtful and intentional person.

For now, I will no longer respond directly to her posts as she ignores my own. We will all benefit from her perspective and scholarship I am sure. Some discussion may be a trifle difficult but I am sure the community can make allowance as needed. The situation is regrettable.

That quote is also in the UB pethuel but I cannot find it...yet.

8)


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Katroof wrote:
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Don't forget, it's the attack that is being blocked, not the person.


That’s simply not true. You ARE blocking the person; you cannot see any of the constructive, well-researched posts made by those you’ve blocked - and there are many good posts. You’re throwing away the wheat with the tares.

If you (and by “you” I mean the general you - all of us) truly want to exist non-defensively and peacefully, take a lesson from Jesus and turn the other cheek. Shrug it off. Scroll past the posts that injure your pride, hurt your ego, make your blood pressure rise. We can all be grown-ups and simply step away or ignore those posts that bother you. Do you (general you) not have the strength of will to find some positive aspect and get on with a constructive discussion without a computer protecting your sensibilities?

Can we try it? For a couple months? That’s all I ask.


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Jesus didn't bother to defend his rights.


Exactly. Did Jesus only listen to those who were nice to him? Did he refuse to teach those who belittled him? Did he instruct his disciples to cover their ears and cower if someone hurt their feelings? Of course not! He wasn’t running a preschool.

And neither are we.


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[quote="pethuel"In the New Testament Matthew's gospel states "Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother." I couldn't find the parallel passage in the UB and I'm short of time, but if anyone cares to add it please do![/quote]

Here it is:

(1762.5) 159:1.3 “The Father in heaven loves his children, and therefore should you learn to love one another; the Father in heaven forgives you your sins; therefore should you learn to forgive one another. If your brother sins against you, go to him and with tact and patience show him his fault. And do all this between you and him alone. If he will listen to you, then have you won your brother. But if your brother will not hear you, if he persists in the error of his way, go again to him, taking with you one or two mutual friends that you may thus have two or even three witnesses to confirm your testimony and establish the fact that you have dealt justly and mercifully with your offending brother. Now if he refuses to hear your brethren, you may tell the whole story to the congregation, and then, if he refuses to hear the brotherhood, let them take such action as they deem wise; let such an unruly member become an outcast from the kingdom. While you cannot pretend to sit in judgment on the souls of your fellows, and while you may not forgive sins or otherwise presume to usurp the prerogatives of the supervisors of the heavenly hosts, at the same time, it has been committed to your hands that you should maintain temporal order in the kingdom on earth. While you may not meddle with the divine decrees concerning eternal life, you shall determine the issues of conduct as they concern the temporal welfare of the brotherhood on earth. And so, in all these matters connected with the discipline of the brotherhood, whatsoever you shall decree on earth, shall be recognized in heaven. Although you cannot determine the eternal fate of the individual, you may legislate regarding the conduct of the group, for, where two or three of you agree concerning any of these things and ask of me, it shall be done for you if your petition is not inconsistent with the will of my Father in heaven. And all this is ever true, for, where two or three believers are gathered together, there am I in the midst of them.”


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