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Just A Note Before I Leave......


David
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Just a note before I go outside the gate for this Board. Seems like the “gatekeeper” got upset about my gatekeeping. I find it significant that three posters account for about one third of the total posts and it looks like FredP has checked out also. Too bad. FredP gave me my theological statement. I guess the gate has something to do with that.

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Just a note before I go outside the gate for this Board. Seems like the “gatekeeper” got upset about my gatekeeping. I find it significant that three posters account for about one third of the total posts and it looks like FredP has checked out also. Too bad. FredP gave me my theological statement. I guess the gate has something to do with that.

 

 

Excuse me?

 

I'm not upset at you. You used the word first and I apologized for my crankiness. I've left the board David. Gatekeep to your hearts content.

 

You're right, I do post the most. Too much time on my hands I guess. I certainly don't intend to shut the conversation down. If anything I've tried desperately to stir some conversation up.

 

I've left the board before because I felt like I spend too much time here. I'm leaving the board at this time because I realize I don't fit in anymore.

 

And it's ironic that you are drawn to Fred. He was the other most philosophical poster on here, along with me, and he too found the atmosphere a bit unconducive to dialog when it fell outside the "bounds" of proper progressive Christianity.

 

C'est la vie. :)

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Excuse me?

 

I'm not upset at you. You used the word first and I apologized for my crankiness. I've left the board David. Gatekeep to your hearts content.

 

You're right, I do post the most. Too much time on my hands I guess. I certainly don't intend to shut the conversation down. If anything I've tried desperately to stir some conversation up.

 

I've left the board before because I felt like I spend too much time here. I'm leaving the board at this time because I realize I don't fit in anymore.

 

And it's ironic that you are drawn to Fred. He was the other most philosophical poster on here, along with me, and he too found the atmosphere a bit unconducive to dialog when it fell outside the "bounds" of proper progressive Christianity.

 

C'est la vie. :)

OK, this is what I get for not stopping in in recent months. Gee, I really liked Fred's posts. So what was so outside the bounds of PC? -or is that too un-PC to ask ;) Earl

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Excuse me?

 

I'm not upset at you. You used the word first and I apologized for my crankiness. I've left the board David. Gatekeep to your hearts content.

 

You're right, I do post the most. Too much time on my hands I guess. I certainly don't intend to shut the conversation down. If anything I've tried desperately to stir some conversation up.

 

I've left the board before because I felt like I spend too much time here. I'm leaving the board at this time because I realize I don't fit in anymore.

 

And it's ironic that you are drawn to Fred. He was the other most philosophical poster on here, along with me, and he too found the atmosphere a bit unconducive to dialog when it fell outside the "bounds" of proper progressive Christianity.

 

C'est la vie. :)

 

Ditto, although I'm not planning to leave, I do not find much here to comment upon these days since the really interesting conversations from my perspective are drying up, it seems to me.

 

Unless I'm greatly mistaken the purpose of this board is to find ways for Christianity to "progress" into the future. I personally believe that is done by questioning the status quo, and opening up new areas of discussion, rather than rehashing the same old stuff over and over. Opaque repetition brings decay and dissolution. Transparent change brings new life. And transparent change only happens when meaningful questions and ideas are addressed and explored. That doesn't go on very much here anymore.

 

As far as I'm concerned that all comprises regressive actions, much akin to having to tolerate James AMDG's infantile rants from a reactionary perspective again, and again, and again, and again, and again....Creative personalities just get so sick and tired of that routine that they migrate elsewhere where the subject matter is more vibrant. I know the tactics of it all since I worked at a large research university and watched glimmers of worthwhile ideas for change die in the rubble of stale subject matter heaped upon them until they smothered and died.

 

And, it seems especially futile and unproductive to explore the initiation of a new bureaucratic denomination. Christianity needs to get out of its "comfort zones" and that is only done by

asking hard questions. That's not happening here anymore because really smart and exploratory personalities are being turned off by the set of do-nothing attitudes that have migrated in and out of here enough over the past year or so to do the necessary damages.

 

So today I'm going elsewhere to discuss things like, "Was the Nicean Creed a reaction to Gnostic threats to the establishment; and/or was is simply a compromise enacted under the authority of Roman Empire as an economic, political, and military expediency?"

 

Until Christians are willing to go back in time and find where the glaring errors were made in our stumbles forward through time, there will be no progress, and no Progressive Christianity. This all is NOT about gatekeeping. It's about thinking and living outside of the walls, at least in mind and spirit.

 

flow.... :(

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It's too bad that all of you are leaving. I might be missing something, but I never thought the posts crossed the line. Did you all have some type of offline smack down drag out fight? What the halo is going on? :unsure:

 

So today I'm going elsewhere to discuss things like, "Was the Nicean Creed a reaction to Gnostic threats to the establishment; and/or was is simply a compromise enacted under the authority of Roman Empire as an economic, political, and military expediency?"

Can you leave some breadcrumbs pointing us in the right direction? I'd love to get in on that topic.

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flow:

 

As far as I'm concerned that all comprises regressive actions, much akin to having to tolerate James AMDG's infantile rants from a reactionary perspective again, and again, and again, and again, and again....Creative personalities just get so sick and tired of that routine that they migrate elsewhere where the subject matter is more vibrant. I know the tactics of it all since I worked at a large research university and watched glimmers of worthwhile ideas for change die in the rubble of stale subject matter heaped upon them until they smothered and died.

 

This from the person who instead of countering what I said about philosphy, math, etc. not coming from the Muslims but rather being Western by ending

 

the only reason that [Gallileo] was punished for his work was that he wrote his compendium of findings in Italian and not in the language of the church, Latin. It was this threat of providing novel scientific information to the masses in their everyday language that so thoroughly threatened the powerful status quo at the time.

 

Without offering any sort of reference, etc. Just making an assertion.

 

I might be "infantile", "reactionary" but at least I was giving you sources and description.

 

Good luck elsewhere though.

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If I could go off on a tangent for a moment--

 

Hasn't "progressive" Christianity been around for a while? I'm thinking of Unitarianism, which I believe started around 1800. Now I think they've combined with the Universalists. Jefferson said that Unitarianism was about the only branch of Christainity he favored.

 

Some might add Quakers to the progressive list. And from the point of view of the RCC, Protestantism was very progressive--tho this is not the term they would have used.

 

But maybe most progressives are non-denominational; that is, they do not necessarily attend any particular church. (Maybe that's because progressives tend to be individualists) At the same time, there are many churches that call themselves "non-denominational." Oddly, most are conservative Evangelical. They see themselve as "sola scriptura," and thus believe they don't need an ecclesiastical structure.

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OK, so whoever's the last one out, please turn off the lights. Just let me know if it's me. I don't expect it will be. Enough people will wander here by accident for no one to be the last one.

 

I've been a source of friction here. I expect that as someone who says all religions are false, including the religion of whomever I'm talking to, including Christianity. There's no friction-free way of saying that. I make it even harder when I turn around and talk about my own spiritual experiences, my own Christianity and how I've integrated them with my scientific background in my own way. Would it be better for me to lie about those or be silent? How would that help anyone?

 

I don't see any reason never to be critical of what anyone believes, including me. You can't really explore ideas if you only stick to one's positive reactions. Of course this can rub people the wrong way, so at some point someone created two boards, this one for debate and dialogue, as well as the other one, where I usually remembered to be less aggressive. So what's the problem? There's more than one problem, isn't there?

 

I'm not going to write about what the problems are. People can decide for themselves and comment as they see fit. I'm glad that this place runs that way. It's even OK with me if someone decides to delete comments as he or she sees fit, including mine. Would that be so terrible? Despite the hard feelings evident here, I don't see anyone doing anything but speaking their minds. Is that so terrible? Obviously it is to some.

 

This isn't the first time I returned here after being away for months. It is interesting to notice the dates people first signed up here. Some people leave for good if they find nothing interesting to them. Some come back as I have a few times. If you have something to say, say it. If you don't, don't. I do have things to say, including some negative things about how abstract and vague theology and philosophy can get. I think I'll post one tomorrow. If no one wants to say anything about it, fine. If people want to say it's a bunch of crap, fine. I'll say why I disagree. I know some here have left other sites where people talk this way. So there's the Progressive Christianity section to this board.

 

If instead someone says something judgmental about how anyone should be posting, what a hypocrite you are. I may say more about that, or I may not.

Edited by DavidD
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I just need to get rid of an image. It hit me earlier as I noticed the word "coerce" above as in "don't". How does someone coerce another with mere words? It's a free country. People can write or not as words come to them. Maybe we're not talking about the dictionary definition of "coerce". Whatever it is, it's fine with me if the powers at be decide that. I'm curious whether they see straightforward in your face intimidation the same as whiny, passive aggressive manipulation that pretends that only the other person is a bad guy, his or her mean words somehow forcing someone through the computer screen to do something other than what that second person wants to do. But since I've never seen anything get censored here and people seem to up and leave so easily, maybe it's a moot point.

 

The thing is I'm stuck with this image I had earlier until I process it accordingly. It's that cover of National Lampoon from the seventies where they have this small dog, a beagle I think. Someone offscreen is holding a gun to its head. The caption screams, "BUY THIS MAGAZINE OR WE'LL SHOOT THIS DOG!" I remember a woman who was appalled at such heavy-handed coercion. I tried to explain, look, they can't tell if you buy the magazine or not, I don't think they'd shoot the dog even if they knew you're not buying it. I think it's a joke. As I recall I think I managed to contain myself that I thought it was hilarious. Nothing I said helped.

 

We never dated. I'm sure it's just as well. Whew.

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Well that was interesting.

I really am leaving.

I’m going to my place without power or internet.

I just happened to notice the gate as I was leaving.

Gates are normal folks. Whenever people get together there will be gates.

This Board has a gate for those that generally agree and those that want to disagree.

That is excellent.

This Board, more than most, has a “community feel”.

Part of community is having gates around the community.

This community has had gatekeepers. BrotherRog was one of the first.

I am interested in why he and fellow gatekeeper FredP are no longer posting.

The people in this community would rather talk about some things and not others.

That’s the gate.

Nothing malicious. Nothing sinister. Nothing about putting a lid on it.

Just not interested. Period.

When people see this they go outside the gate.

I don’t think most people post here to hear themselves think.

But it seems most of discussions start with “I” and not “We”.

I am tired of this. Too much UU I guess (see my description of UU syndrome).

We should (yes, folks I dare say we should) be interested in Church.

Much has been talked about in terms of Progressive and Christian.

But no one wants to talk about Church.

That’s the gate.

The people who post the most help set the gate but it’s not that simple.

Yet they should be aware of the gates that are created.

I think because they post the most they have more responsibility.

As I tried to motivate discussion on polity I hit a nerve I guess.

That’s ok. No hard feelings.

AR come back, they like you.

More than that they need you.

Maybe even more than that you may need them.

Maybe we will find a common gate along the road somewhere.

I’ll check in again when I return to this civilized world.

If the gate is still there I’ll probably stay outside.

Or I may test the fence again and see if a gate will open.

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David, you are so full of it. Pull your head out and look around. I mean that in the most loving way. I really do. I have empathy for the state you're in. Suck it up and understand that your resentments are obvious. Every judgment that is in what you say screams out that it is judgment, not wisdom. AR's parting shot about your gatekeeping is precisely the same resentment pretending to be clever, PRECISELY! That both of you think you are so advanced in your thoughts about religion is so typical, inside UU or outside of it.

 

I wish everyone would do a 12 step program and do it well. The world would be such a better place. One might even see the glow as so many people did step 7 at the same time, humbly asking God to remove their defects of character, the biggest one for everyone being resentments.

 

Anger is not resentment. Anger can clear the air. It often doesn't, but that's about the dysfunctional side of our culture, not the nature of anger. It is perfectly all right to say, "I don't like this," even harshly, but that doesn't mean whatever intellectual excuse we make for why it's the other guy's fault has any validity. So many religions have rules against anger, so people stay on their intellectual side and ideas come up that are so dark. It's amazing that people should see how ugly they are, but they don't. Religion is as wrong about anger as anything else. Anger lets people see what's ugly and fix that, as long as there's enough restraint to keep from doing real damage. That's pretty easy through a computer screen.

 

I've asked myself why I felt so much anger at reading the exchange between you and AR. Both of you are telling such lies, and I suppose neither one of you realize it. Maybe it's the worst thing about the human condition, our capacity for self-deception, which we use not only to beat up on ourselves but on other people as well. So I see that and want to say, "Stop it, you stupid fools," which ordinarily wouldn't help anyone. It takes someone in relationship with people to be a peacemaker, to be listened to.

 

I know exactly what goes on in an exchange like this, because of professional training (after physics) and personal experience, yet all I know to do is be honest about what comes to me. That may cause some to judge me. Big deal. No one here knows who I am at all. It's a bigger deal that there's so little I can do, even if I get very angry, to penetrate people's defenses about this. It is such a big problem in the world that so many people are so full of themselves. Some would judge me that I am. No, I am transparent, just not through a computer screen.

 

God knows more than I do about this exchange between you and AR. Both of you will believe what you choose to believe about it. Neither of you see it clearly. If that's how it ends, so be it. People do this all the time. But as I member of the audience who saw what was going on on the screen and just had to yell out something, I have. I'll keep going if more comes to me. The only gatekeeper here has a much more limited agenda than you two are saying.

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OK, something else came to me, and to emphasize that there is no gatekeeper here as well as for its intrinsic value, I'm going to post it. I've never seen a gatekeeper here in two years, even when many discussions were among FredP, flow, and AR. I broke into some of those. Others did. I may have pissed people off even more than they said by doing that, but no one said no.

 

I was in a contentious thread on another liberal Christian site two years ago. Someone said Paul hijacked Christianity. I said no, he didn't. He had a relationship with God. There was nothing illegitimate about his contribution. I forget what, but something in what I said was described as a "typical fundie trick". Huh? I tried to explain that I'm neither a fundie nor tricking anyone, but he stomped off, saying that the rest of the board could put up with me if they want, but he'd had enough of fundies. There was also something insulting my intelligence for disagreeing with him, things that FredP used to say in a much more polite and subtle way. I wound up posting 4 times in a row on that thread toward the end. Hey, things kept coming to me. This was described as my being in love with the sound of my own voice. No, that wasn't it. I like to write. I need closure. I'm not intimidated by insults that much. There are plenty of reasons.

 

I was thinking about this in terms of how hard it is to have a dialogue, but people here must know that pretty well. I think there's a more interesting bottom line - our greatest enemy is in the mirror, our resentments, our expectations, our desires, all sorts of thing. I'd go through some ugliness that illustrates that, but I don't feel like it. I don't think anyone will learn that our greatest enemy is in the mirror until he or she is willing to look there and work through with a 12 step program or something similar to see all the oneupsmanship and controlling we do that we don't have to do. That's where I go when I see people insulting each other, especially in those subtle ways where they can pretend they're doing nothing wrong, just being clever. Sometimes if you're told you're full of it, it's because you're full of it. It can be that simple.

 

Of course, insults can be recreational. I was on a site once where atheists outnumber Christians, mentioning as an aside that our greatest enemy is in the mirror, and some atheist just blistered me for that, about how abusively self-deprecating Christianity is, how stupid that is, ... how stupid I am (I have all these academic credentials and so many start calling me stupid. I guess it's just a common place to go). Oh yeah? I've been insulted a lot worse than that, punk. You have no idea what I grew up with. Ooh, could we have a board here where people are required to insult each other, at least once per posting, maybe color-coded? It might desensitize some people. No, I suppose not. It's not progressive, is it?

 

Our greatest enemy is in the mirror. I think there's a lot of truth in that.

Edited by DavidD
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DD:

 

I appreciate your airing of the things that have transpired here as you have seen them. But the fact remains that certain elements of people in the world always view their role in life to be controlling the behavior of others in order to denigrate their beliefs: and, to somehow retard and deflect their examinings of the realities of this world in ways other than those that are traditionally acceptable to the powers that be. I've had it happen too many times in my life for that not to be true, and these people will use any ploy or trick to accomplish their purposes. But then I'm an oldster and am fairly used to this. So as I said I'm not leaving, but intend not to be as active. The fact remains that some people will do anything possible to prevent others from being what G-d created them to be. To my way of thinking, it is akin to what slave owners did to their human property in the past.

 

I'm not pointing a finger at anyone, especially you for you have been very forthcoming and honest in your comments and dealings with those of us who saw this place as somewhere where "molds" might be broken. I think Fred P and Aletheia just got tired of dealing with the negative momentum generated by such individuals, and decided to spend thier thoughts and ideas elsewhere. After all they are younger and have not seen this as extensively as we have, and decided just not to deal with it at all. One gets very tired of the blockages that this world has erected to real progress over the millenia, and sometimes we just need to relax and have some fun.

 

I think Beach's commune idea is an excellent one, albeit unrealistic, but dreaming is part of what humans are supposed to do. Today's milieu of programmed behavior, grinding poverty of soul and spirit, and cartoonish war games, real and invented, just does too many negative things to some of us who really do care about a viable future.

 

peace and love,

 

flow.... :unsure:

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flow,

 

Thank you for your kind words. I am a hard person to get to know, and it's very hard for people to know where I'm coming from. It's a different place indeed.

 

Speaking of breaking the mold, read what I just wrote for soma's thread on the othe board and understand it is the God's honest truth. I'm an emotional guy with low inhibitions, but there is no way I was going to reveal that when I started writing. Then God said ... and I said ... and God said ... and I said, well, OK.

 

I'm sorry if this confuses anyone. It wasn't my idea. Look, we either just trust God or we don't, and for me that goes double.

 

You know if no one talks about this one, you guys are made of stone.

 

Seriously, the 12 steps did more for me to deal with controlling people than I could every have imagined. But I still have my moments. I'm passionate, I know what I see, and I have this companion that is hard for any of you to believe. Thank God He's not controlling, pushy sometimes, right Boss? Not controlling.

 

Oh, He didn't warn me at all He was going to do this. Sink or swim, well after 17 years we all knew I'd swim, but Jesus. The spiritual world just is not as up tight as people think it is. There are so many things like that.

 

OK, God and I are going to go have a little talk.

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Wow. Deep breath people. It is just a message board ;)

 

I am going to close this topic.

 

It would be really silly for people to "leave" the board (what does that even mean, anyway?) just because you got in a little flame war with someone. If you don't like someone, put them on ignore. If they are being really rude, let me know and I will talk to them. Otherwise, you should know that all of the people who are involved with keeping TCPC running and all of the hundreds of lurkers who read these boards without posting, really appreciate the range of thoughts and the incredible dialogues that happen here - even when they get heated.

 

If things did not heat up, then we would not really be discussing anything that really matters. The test is what you do after things get tense.

 

Don't go. We need you.

 

And if there is something I can do - or a way I can arrange or manage the boards to make things better - send me a note, ok?

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