This Forum in Particular

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clyde
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This Forum in Particular

Post by clyde » Wed May 15, 2019 4:37 pm

desert_woodworker wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 12:18 am
Better than Buddhist Forums in general, of course, is Buddhist forums in particular.

What's in particular tickling me is Zen Buddhist forums. Not that there's anything great in them. For that, there'd have to be great practitioners in them. Oh, well.

--Joe
I think Joe’s right, a great Zen Buddhist forum has great practitioners because great members create a great forum. And I think there are some great practitioners here. I wish there were more great practitioners of the Zen Way who participated here. (Also, more of the not-so-great practitioners and the bad practitioners like me, and even the non-practitioners.)

I’m here because I have to be - I’m the temporary owner and responsible for maintaining the forum. But I came here because I have an interest in Zen Buddhism, its teachings and practice, and it’s sometimes beneficial and/or pleasurable to share that interest with others.

For me, this forum sometimes feels like “call and response” and sometimes like “button pushing”. But too often it feels like non-zense. As long as the members are OK with it (and they must be because no one Reports off-topic posts and no one complains about ‘joke’ posts in the Zen forum), it will be this way.
“Enlightenment means to see what harm you are involved in and to renounce it.” David Brazier, The New Buddhism

“The most straightforward advice on awakening enlightened mind is this: practice not causing harm to anyone—yourself or others—and every day, do what you can to be helpful.” Pema Chodron, “What to Do When the Going Gets Rough”

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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by fuki » Wed May 15, 2019 5:30 pm

The embodiment of non-zense posts are the uncountable of posts on all the zen forums (from e-sangha to this one) where there seems to be a constant obsession in steering the forum in a particular way, in some ideal imaginative idea what "true zen" is, the so-called great and ungreat practisioners. In full attention where is there any center arising and differentiating? Can anyone show me that on a forum right NOW? if there weren't so much bitching in all the old forums about what's zen and nonzense we probably would have many old members left who didn't feel they needed to confirm to some mental picture of a true or wise or actualized practisioner, just let people be, and let them have fun, let them be foolish and wise (in behaviour) all this constant differentiation is what made the forum what it is today. How hard is it to just be and as any situation arises free from within the most genuinely compassionate response, that is the function (of a forum) not keeping a list of who's zen and who's nonzense, ironically steering a forum and its members in such a way merely has the opposite result, don't we ever learn? :cat:
meldpunt seksueel misbruik in boeddhistische gemeenschappen.
https://meldpuntbg.nl/

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clyde
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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by clyde » Wed May 15, 2019 5:56 pm

Yes, of course, you’re right. And wrong too.

Yes, it’s about “steering [“wishing” might be the more accurate term] the forum in a particular way,” but wrong about “some ideal imaginative idea what ‘true zen’ is”. You know there’s a difference between exploring and talking about the Zen Way and what is merely ‘play’. Of course there’s a place for fun; even Zen Masters have fun, but they also know when and where its appropriate.

This is still a Zen Space, “A Zen Buddhist discussion forum. Zen Space is a free community service run by volunteers to provide an online place to discuss Zen Buddhism and to share our collective knowledge and experience.”

This isn’t about some idealized version of a ‘true Zen’ forum. It’s whether this is a Zen forum or merely a place to play.

As I stated in my initial post, as long as the members are content with the current way, there will be no change.
“Enlightenment means to see what harm you are involved in and to renounce it.” David Brazier, The New Buddhism

“The most straightforward advice on awakening enlightened mind is this: practice not causing harm to anyone—yourself or others—and every day, do what you can to be helpful.” Pema Chodron, “What to Do When the Going Gets Rough”

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fuki
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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by fuki » Wed May 15, 2019 6:10 pm

Clyde, I understand.
meldpunt seksueel misbruik in boeddhistische gemeenschappen.
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Mason
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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by Mason » Wed May 15, 2019 6:37 pm

I'm interested to hear what other kinds of content members here would like to see.

There is plenty in Buddhism to discuss in a fruitful and engaging manner. Zen Buddhism, too! But as long as Zen is confused with anti-intellectualism, which is prevalent, there is not much to discuss aside from how useless forums are.

As for me, I'd like to see more discussion of scripture, divergences of view and practice between different houses of Zen, recommendations for books and Dharma talks, debates, reports of personal experience with the practice, and indeed humor or "non-zense" for fun and to keep the forum from being as dry as bones. :556:
"The Way needs no cultivation, just do not defile. What is defilement? When with a mind of birth and death one acts in a contrived way, then everything is a defilement. If one wants to know the Way directly: Ordinary Mind is the Way!"

- Record of Ma-tsu

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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by Caodemarte » Wed May 15, 2019 8:04 pm

I know my own interest in participating has decreased as discussions of Zen have decreased. I don’t think there are so many people here who are practitioners or interested in discussing Zen Buddhism on this forum.

Perhaps the ordained, who might actually know something about Zen Buddhism, should be “unbanned” and re-invited.

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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by Spike » Wed May 15, 2019 9:11 pm

fuki wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 5:30 pm
if there weren't so much bitching in all the old forums about what's zen and nonzense we probably would have many old members left who didn't feel they needed to conf[o]rm to some mental picture of a true or wise or actualized practisioner, just let people be, and let them have fun, let them be foolish and wise (in behaviour) all this constant differentiation is what made the forum what it is today. . . ironically steering a forum and its members in such a way merely has the opposite result, don't we ever learn? :cat:
Right on, thank you.

But the owner certainly has the prerogative to make or not make guidelines as he/she sees fit.

I treasured Meido's contribution here, but I don't know why he would volunteer here indefinitely, vs steering time and energy to his responsibilities.

Whether we like it or not, we all display actualized zen, from reading, formal studies, experience, etc. It may or may not be *great*. Personally: piss on great.

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clyde
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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by clyde » Wed May 15, 2019 10:28 pm

Mason wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 6:37 pm
I'm interested to hear what other kinds of content members here would like to see.

There is plenty in Buddhism to discuss in a fruitful and engaging manner. Zen Buddhism, too! But as long as Zen is confused with anti-intellectualism, which is prevalent, there is not much to discuss aside from how useless forums are.

As for me, I'd like to see more discussion of scripture, divergences of view and practice between different houses of Zen, recommendations for books and Dharma talks, debates, reports of personal experience with the practice, and indeed humor or "non-zense" for fun and to keep the forum from being as dry as bones. :556:
I’m interested too. And I agree that there is much that could be discussed and some humor “to keep the forum from being as dry as bones” is welcome. But examine some Zen topics and notice how one ‘joke’ post leads to another and another until the topic is the joke.
“Enlightenment means to see what harm you are involved in and to renounce it.” David Brazier, The New Buddhism

“The most straightforward advice on awakening enlightened mind is this: practice not causing harm to anyone—yourself or others—and every day, do what you can to be helpful.” Pema Chodron, “What to Do When the Going Gets Rough”

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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by clyde » Wed May 15, 2019 10:30 pm

Caodemarte wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 8:04 pm
I know my own interest in participating has decreased as discussions of Zen have decreased. I don’t think there are so many people here who are practitioners or interested in discussing Zen Buddhism on this forum.

Perhaps the ordained, who might actually know something about Zen Buddhism, should be “unbanned” and re-invited.
Yes, my interest also wanes as discussions of Zen have decreased.

And I wish it was as simply explained and/or fixed by allowing ordained Zen teachers to participate. I don’t believe that’s the case. Regarding Meido, before I took ownership and made any changes, he had already informed the admin & mods that he was cutting back on his participation because of his other responsibilities. You can examine his posts to see he wasn’t posting often in the weeks prior to the policy change. Regarding Guo Gu, he knows he can participate here as he’s not an ordained Zen teacher. Before I was given ownership, Dan attempted to get more Zen teachers to Zen Space, but was unsuccessful - which may have been why, in part, he gave up ownership.

No, if there isn’t enough Zen here, it’s our responsibility.
“Enlightenment means to see what harm you are involved in and to renounce it.” David Brazier, The New Buddhism

“The most straightforward advice on awakening enlightened mind is this: practice not causing harm to anyone—yourself or others—and every day, do what you can to be helpful.” Pema Chodron, “What to Do When the Going Gets Rough”

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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by fuki » Thu May 16, 2019 11:10 am

Spike wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 9:11 pm
But the owner certainly has the prerogative to make or not make guidelines as he/she sees fit.
Certainly, my only point in contributing in this thread was the observation that in all the old forums, "complaining" about what was lacking never improved anything, it only caused more division between the so called "greatly experienced/ordained/dharma experts" and "not that" by a small group of arbitrary folks who always view themselves as part of group 1. As ever if I want my relationship with my wife to grow I don't need to send the kids to their room first, at least it wasn't how I was raised nor will I ever cut up the family in a mental picture. But whatever is said already in this thread I've heared/read a hundred times already in the old forums, that was my point, it doesn't help. As Clyde said if we want to have more of something (or what's perceived as such) then create it, it's that simple. I'm good all ways, I'll never mention there's too much or too little of something, unless it's complaining and bitching about what others lack.

Thanks for the grammar check Spike, always appreciate that.
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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by desert_woodworker » Thu May 16, 2019 10:08 pm

clyde wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 4:37 pm
desert_woodworker wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 12:18 am
Better than Buddhist Forums in general, of course, is Buddhist forums in particular.

What's in particular tickling me is Zen Buddhist forums. Not that there's anything great in them. For that, there'd have to be great practitioners in them. Oh, well.

--Joe
I think Joe’s right, a great Zen Buddhist forum has great practitioners because great members create a great forum.
I'm awaiting ordinary Zen Buddhist practitioners to step in. Ones who have gone into ordinary and normal pedestrian practice, including practice at a center with a teacher and sangha over years, and multiple sesshin attendance and participation. Mere readers and imaginists don't cut it.

Granted, at a discussion forum, all are welcome. But I welcome too those who have been to the mountain, and may be climbing again, and again. Breaking new ground repeatedly, for all Beings.

Picking and choosing,

--Joe

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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by .joop » Thu May 16, 2019 10:17 pm

desert_woodworker wrote:
Thu May 16, 2019 10:08 pm
Mere readers and imaginists don't cut it.
mere readers and imaginists haven't commandeered this forum.

Hail!

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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by desert_woodworker » Thu May 16, 2019 10:26 pm

.joop wrote:
Thu May 16, 2019 10:17 pm
desert_woodworker wrote:
Thu May 16, 2019 10:08 pm
Mere readers and imaginists don't cut it.
mere readers and imaginists haven't commandeered this forum.

Hail!
Love it!

--Joe

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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by clyde » Thu May 16, 2019 10:39 pm

Joe; Whilst I can’t count myself as one of the “ordinary Zen Buddhist practitioners”, don’t neglect that there some here who meet that criteria (“practice at a center with a teacher and sangha over years, and multiple sesshin attendance and participation”).

Like you, I wish there were more such practitioners participating here. It seems to me it’s about ‘critical mass’. But as Fuki correctly noted, complaining doesn’t work. I’ve contacted a few Zen students who have or are participating on forums, and perhaps you and others who are like-minded, could contact and encourage Zen students to participate here.
“Enlightenment means to see what harm you are involved in and to renounce it.” David Brazier, The New Buddhism

“The most straightforward advice on awakening enlightened mind is this: practice not causing harm to anyone—yourself or others—and every day, do what you can to be helpful.” Pema Chodron, “What to Do When the Going Gets Rough”

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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by desert_woodworker » Thu May 16, 2019 10:52 pm

clyde wrote:
Thu May 16, 2019 10:39 pm
Joe; Whilst I can’t count myself as one of the “ordinary Zen Buddhist practitioners”, don’t neglect that there some here who meet that criteria (“practice at a center with a teacher and sangha over years, and multiple sesshin attendance and participation”).

Like you, I wish there were more such practitioners participating here. It seems to me it’s about ‘critical mass’. But as Fuki correctly noted, complaining doesn’t work. I’ve contacted a few Zen students who have or are participating on forums, and perhaps you and others who are like-minded, could contact and encourage Zen students to participate here.
Thanks, Clyde. No, I won't be one to suggest to instigate deliberate change, here.

Practitioners will come (and perhaps stay) if they see Zen Buddhist practice-related topics and threads (informed by experience and not just reading and imaginings). I wouldn't want to encourage my gang to gang-up on ya's. ;)

Let Evolution/Devolution be the determinant and creative Advocate / Prosecutor.

As for myself, I'm hopeful! And ready and liable to contribute.

Most of what I have to contribute is questions, askings, and what follows from questions, and considerations. It seems that some here won't take them up, either by reticence, or by (who knows... ). Ad hominem off-topic rants appear too frequently, and de-rail our posts.

Fuki's notes are not informed by formal Zen Buddhist practice, and although I love our brother Marcel to pieces (just ask him ;) ), I think that the matter of "Complaining" is not to the point at all. The point is participating in a common reality. But, not your reality? Then, not common. So, maybe maintain Noble Silence about some things totally outside your ken so far.

Again, all of Human-i-tiv-ity must indeed be welcome. As I was once, twice, thrice, amongst my betters (?), ...who taught me to dig deep, but naturally. ;)

TNX, for this forum,

--Joe

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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by Spike » Thu May 16, 2019 11:36 pm

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Last edited by Spike on Fri May 17, 2019 1:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Seeker242
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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by Seeker242 » Fri May 17, 2019 12:23 am

desert_woodworker wrote:
Thu May 16, 2019 10:08 pm
clyde wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 4:37 pm
desert_woodworker wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 12:18 am
Better than Buddhist Forums in general, of course, is Buddhist forums in particular.

What's in particular tickling me is Zen Buddhist forums. Not that there's anything great in them. For that, there'd have to be great practitioners in them. Oh, well.

--Joe
I think Joe’s right, a great Zen Buddhist forum has great practitioners because great members create a great forum.
I'm awaiting ordinary Zen Buddhist practitioners to step in. Ones who have gone into ordinary and normal pedestrian practice, including practice at a center with a teacher and sangha over years, and multiple sesshin attendance and participation. Mere readers and imaginists don't cut it.

Granted, at a discussion forum, all are welcome. But I welcome too those who have been to the mountain, and may be climbing again, and again. Breaking new ground repeatedly, for all Beings.

Picking and choosing,

--Joe
They are already here but don't post much because most of the forum is non-zense. :lol:

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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by [james] » Fri May 17, 2019 1:38 am

Seeker242 wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 12:23 am
They are already here but don't post much because most of the forum is non-zense. :lol:
Why would a view that “most of the forum is non-zense. :lol:” dissuade or prevent someone from posting? If you include yourself as one of the “already here” who don’t post much, would you care to expand a bit on the cause and effect?

I wonder if, in fact, they (the ordinary Zen Buddhist practitioners) are hardly here at all. I’m perplexed that the large majority of members here don’t participate in any active way. Why join a forum such as this if not to share and investigate one’s own zen practice? If the content or ambiance is not satisfactory, is it not each member’s “Zen responsibility” (to their own manifestation of zen, or to the wider interest of mutual inquiry) to make the necessary contributions to shift the balance?

Silence in this context is not noble at all.

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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by Seeker242 » Fri May 17, 2019 1:56 am

[james] wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 1:38 am
Seeker242 wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 12:23 am
They are already here but don't post much because most of the forum is non-zense. :lol:
Why would a view that “most of the forum is non-zense. :lol:” dissuade or prevent someone from posting? If you include yourself as one of the “already here” who don’t post much, would you care to expand a bit on the cause and effect?
Because they don't want to engage in nonsense.
I wonder if, in fact, they (the ordinary Zen Buddhist practitioners) are hardly here at all. I’m perplexed that the large majority of members here don’t participate in any active way. Why join a forum such as this if not to share and investigate one’s own zen practice?
If people want to talk about their practice, that's great. Go for it. I don't have a particular need for that myself.
If the content or ambiance is not satisfactory, is it not each member’s “Zen responsibility” (to their own manifestation of zen, or to the wider interest of mutual inquiry) to make the necessary contributions to shift the balance?
"Zen responsibility" doesn't need to have to do with internet forums. Internet forums, even buddhist ones, are mostly just people vomiting their opinions on each other. Not vomiting on other people, I consider that to be noble! :D

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Re: This Forum in Particular

Post by Great Sage EofH » Fri May 17, 2019 4:11 am

clyde wrote:
Thu May 16, 2019 10:39 pm
Joe; Whilst I can’t count myself as one of the “ordinary Zen Buddhist practitioners”, don’t neglect that there some here who meet that criteria (“practice at a center with a teacher and sangha over years, and multiple sesshin attendance and participation”).

Like you, I wish there were more such practitioners participating here. It seems to me it’s about ‘critical mass’. But as Fuki correctly noted, complaining doesn’t work. I’ve contacted a few Zen students who have or are participating on forums, and perhaps you and others who are like-minded, could contact and encourage Zen students to participate here.
I for one have read of several here who fit this description. This makes me wonder if Joe reads what people post, or if he remembers? "Where is Joe?"
"We are magical animals that roam" ~~ Roam

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