7th May 14:20
Losing Faith? (christianity)
No, I didn't change any sense, and correctly quoted your main point,
which was that you disagreed and chose to attack, insult, accuse,
I didn't care what the content of the insult was. Once you made it
clear that you were responding with insults, the conversation was
I did bait you by pointing out your phony-psychiatrist-like
accusations, but how am I supposed to respond to a slew of insults and false accusations?
I'd prefer you simply express that fear, and say "I feel pegged",
instead of making up fake 'reasons' for my posts followed by insult
For the record, I neither pegged you as nor called you a fundie. My
exact words were: "I have a lot of praise for Fundamentalist
Christianity," and "faith in God and all the literal beliefs pulls
many criminals and drug addicts back from the abyss".
That wasn't about you, nor was it 'pegging' you or anyone else here.
It was about my experiences with caring fundamentalists. I suppose
the words 'belief' or 'fundamentalist' were trigger words for you, not me.
How you justify insulting me isn't really interesting to me.
Anyway, I suppose this is my initiation into the 'newsgroup frat': a
poster misinterprets me, accuses me, justifies the attack, and then
complains that I didn't repost the entire insult! Wow! I feel like
one of the gang now!
I see another poster responded more to you below, so I'll leave it at
Jack Cleaver <email@example.com> wrote in message news:<bd7nt7$q5lu4$1@ID-158884.news.dfncis.de>...
Perhaps you are right, Jack. I'll simply killfile further posts when
they are packed with insults. What was that again: 4 attacks in 4.5
7th May 14:20
Losing Faith? (church)
Yeah, I went to Church without a fuss as a kid for the donuts
afterwards. I guess at some point they swapped the promise of heaven
for the donuts. But Indian food? I might just convert if it weren't
for my Zen group's veggie pot luck dinners on Sundays.
I guess beauty really is in the eye of the beholder - the other guy
responded with a slew of insults. Or else you just agree with me and
he just disagrees. In any case thanks, Shiva.
And to George Cherry: very cute, your unicorn link. But those were
drawings of unicorns, not unicorns themselves, so I'm still not
convinced. But nice drawings. Very pretty.
7th May 14:20
Losing Faith? (beliefs)
Teapot responds to Jack-in-the-Box:
Your post to me was indeed personal and nasty. Jack pointed that out.
Jhayati never misread your points and never pegged you as a
fundamentalist even once, much less 'kept pegging'. Why not clarify
instead of insult, and say "I think I've been misread; what I mean is this: ..."?
Is this a trap? Accuse jhayati, then threaten to keep repeating the
misinterpretation unless jhayati defends himself, baiting jhayati to
defend and fight and react?
A new accusation and attack. Jhayati had no such intention, and was
attacked by false accusations of calling Teapot a fundamentalist,
which jhayati never did.
Jhayati tried to honestly describe my experiences and views, and was
blindsided with a slew of personal attacks. If jhayati questioned
anything, it was the merit of a particular view, and not an insult of any particular person.
Well, consider yourself asked. But that's tough, since you say this in
the same post along with a new wave of accusations and false claims.
No, 'issue' and 'sensitive' were used in an attacking context, as a
claim that there was something mentally ill or wrong with jhayati,
causing less than a rational, intelligent response.
I like you better when you are honest about your throwing punches.
Which is nonsense. This is yet another new attack, of the form "I
used to think that way too in third grade." Jhayati doesn't presume
to understand or know Teapot's experiences, and claiming to know mine
is only one more punch being thrown.
No, jhayati never claimed to read Teapot's mind or claim to have been
at his stage at some past immature point of my existence.
Perhaps believing that story motivated Teapot to attack me.
Ironically, this is just the kind of thing I find distasteful about
'beliefs' in general, and feelings of certainty: they lead people to
make conclusions which then lead to unkind behavior and suffering.
Which was where jhayati was headed in my posts before I got slapped.
Yes I agree with that.
Perhaps this can be an excellent opportunity for me to be mindful.
7th May 14:20
Losing Faith? (superstitions)
Thank you. I appreciate that. I'm snipping a lot from the below. There
are just a few points I'd like to respond to. Anything that I don't
comment on means I accept your judgement, as in 'point taken, thank
you'. (btw that applies in general to my posts, so I don't have to say it every time).
I guess the specific part that I meant (and I'm quoting from memory)
was his listing a bunch of esoteric doctrines and saying that if
believing in all that kept me from robbing 7-11s and the like then
that's great. There's quite a taste of superiority in that. He's also
referred to many people's beliefs as superstitions, talked about them
'spewing' things, being silly, and basically not being as wonderfully
scientifically-minded as himself. And I got bunched into that camp of
silly, fawning fundies, which stung because I do have an ego, as much
as I'd like to lose it, and he was missing my point altogether.
To me, that section got way into the realm of hardball banter. But
while I was stung I wasn't seriously upset, especially since there was
so much other honest and interesting description of experience in
those posts. But I did respond in kind. I definitely never thought he
would consider himself exposed to a 'slew' of insults.
That's very interesting about those words being 'therapy language'. If
that's what I was doing it was unconscious. I've never been in therapy
myself, so I've just picked up those usages in conversation. I was
trying to describe the lens or fixation that I thought I was
discerning in his readings. But I was treating it very much as 'text'
and not so much as a person. Thanks for the lengthy description of
what you meant. It's helpful and helps me see how I can do a better
job next time.
Well, here the word 'fail' is precisely what you _added_ to the
comment. (see my earlier criticism of your rewriting my words). I
didn't originally use the negatively charged word 'fail'. I just
suggested that something wasn't yet completely carried through. And it
ought to be allowed to make such suggestions without having it be
taken as though I was calling his entire character into question.
That may be so, but it's such a widespread custom, and I've done it
and had it done to me so many times that it's habitual. I've
benefitted from other people's critical comments, though I almost
never have the bottle to admit it to them. I've even benefited from
people's comments that were off base. Also, as I tried to explain, my
points weren't aimed at his character or any compromising part of his
psychology. It's not like I called him ill or neurotic in any way. I
just thought I saw a repeating theme in his way of responding to my
posts and pointed it out.
In real world sanghas I believe that there is still a certain degree
of behavioral training going on, or a kind of peer pressure. But the
cues are more subtle, since they can go via non verbal signals and the
like. Here we have a different situation for better or worse. Jhayati
has posted a lot about his meditation experiences, with infectious
enthusiasm. It would sit well for him not to appear easily insulted at
the same time, otherwise those experiences will seem like shallow
ones. Of course this is all non-essential ego stuff, but this sort of
thing does go on in real life sanghas as well, though not as ********ly as here.
Well I appreciate that you turned out to be such a decent chap. Thanks
for sticking your nose in.
7th May 14:20
Losing Faith? (conditioned)
Well, you did, and you do it again in the part I discuss in my other
response to this post, about the 'rhetorical positioning'.
Well I read it that you did. It's not far fetched. You say you didn't
mean that. You also say I insulted you. I say I didn't mean that.
Where are we then?
Why do you consider yourself accused? It's not like I accused you of
murder, or being a bad person, or being stupid, or being ill. I just
suggested that it looks like you (like every other unenlightened
being) have interpretive patterns or blind spots. I have them, you
have them, so does everyone else on this group, on all of usenet, and
in the whole universe.
Well, what you wrote can be interpreted as your comparing me to
fundamentalists. Again, maybe that's not what you meant. I didn't mean
to be insulting either. So where are we?
I didn't consider myself attacked. I just consider myself pegged. That
means I noticed you weren't understanding what I was saying, and I
thought it had to do with an image you had formed of me, which
connected with your attitudes, and which conditioned your reading.
Believing that is not an attack on you, it is not an insult. Unless
you are insulted if I say that you are not a Buddha yet. By the way,
I'm doing the same thing. I have an image of you which is influencing
how I read your posts. That image is subject to revision, as new
evidence (in the form of posts) arives.
Why does jhayati worry about being considered mentally ill or wrong?
Cup never said this about jhayati. Cup said jhayati misread Cup's
post, and Jhayati maybe is enthusiastic about ideas that are recent
intellectual contexts. Cup has noticed in himself, that Cup often
feels most like writing about ideas and triumphs that he has very
recently understood. Then when they settle it's not such a big issue
for Cup, and Cup sees things more clearly. Cup thinks maybe this nice
Jhayati is like Cup. Cup not want to hurt Jhayati.
This is a complete misreading of what I was saying. I address this in
a separate post.
7th May 14:20
Losing Faith? (sanskrit)
Fair enough - I'm snipping a little here.
I just checked back - I read "you" as being cognate with "one".
"The common public" seem to use that type of terminology more than
therapists do (at least in my limited experience). I see a
psycho****ytical psychotherapist regularly; he uses barely any jargon at
all. In fact english-speaking Buddhists are particularly given to using
psycho****ytical jargon - all the talk of "ego" springs to mind.
Buddhist usage is, of course, quite different from psycho****ytical usage.
Does anyone know the Sanskrit for "ego", by the way? "Atman" is normally
translated as something like "enduring self", of which there is said to
be none, so it can't be that - "ego" is specifically considered to be impermanent.
Well, I'm speaking from my own perspective, which is that I don't care
for that jargon.
In fact when I agreed my initial contract with my therapist, I asked him
to avoid jargon, on the grounds that a) it would confuse me, since I
already attach buddhist meanings to a lot of the terminology; b) because
it has connotations of pathology; and c) because someone who really
understands what they're on about ought to be able to express themselves
in plain language, without relying on specialist terminology.
<checks back> Indeed. Your point is well-taken.
Oh, very much so. Last time I hoked up with my own shower, I got quite a
bruising, and haven't been back for 9 months.
I didn't get the sense that he was bragging, at all. So how his
experiences appear to others (shallow or otherwise) perhaps isn't that
important to him. Anyway, I thought his reaction was quite moderate.
For my part, I have avoided discussing my own experience of practice on
Usenet, because it *is* shallow, and because I don't want it to *appear*
shallow. In fact I have rarely discussed it IRL either, except with my teachers.
People in sanghas risk disapproval and marginalisation if they are seen
to be openly criticising or putting-down other members of the sangha.
That's partly quite proper schism-avoidance, but I think it's also
sometimes a kind of hypocrisy.
It is pleasing that Tangy's ghoulishly-anticipated flame-war has failed
to break out.
7th May 14:20
Tang! You troublemaker you!
Actually I think it was just a couple of silly misunderstandings.
I actually like like most of the things I've read from Mr. Teacup.
And my comments didn't help, as I already seemed to fan it to begin
with, as my reactions were immediately to righteously react with a
"how dare you attack me" attitude. I asked myself, "how many of my
kind, mindful friends would have responded as I did" and the answer
was very few or none.
Anyway, if I need advice on newsgroup ettiquette, Mr. Kool-Aid, you
and Evelyn will be the first to hear from me.
7th May 14:20
I have said many times, and hope that people will oblige: please point out
my faults and errors if you see them, blind spots inluded.
I have greatly benefited from advice along those lines from many
If you do and see that I'm resisting or not listening, please be so kind as
to point that out even more strongly. It will be doubly appreciated.
(See, I'm full of myself).
7th May 14:21
Losing Faith? (metaphysical)
Perhaps I did play 'hardball' without knowing it. I didn't intend do.
I like lively discussion, but not putting down other people. So I'd
like to play 'hardball' with critiquing various views and theories,
but not to the extent of personal comments about specific people and their motivations.
That makes a lot of sense to me, actually, but it is hard to do, and
it might get in the way if when we are discussing something someone
instead of offering a critique of the view or theory says "that's your
interpretive filter". Then I'm on the defensive. Also, when I read a
new book or view that I like, I tend to talk about it
enthusiastically, and I've been accused of being attached or obsessed
with views before, when in fact I'd never heard of the view 48 hours
previously and only was on the third chapter of the book! So
sometimes it's easy to misinterpret, say, enthusiasm, for
fundamentalism or obsession. And over the internet in words with
people who call themselves various names of food or containers for
food? That's even harder.
Yes, that was my overreaction. I wrote that too fast without rereading it.
Only the first of those I actually intended. Since you use Tea-leaves
and Tea-cup in your posts, I thought Teapot was funny and I was
thinking of the "I'm a little teapot" song which was actually playing
in my head seeing your name on the post. I didn't mean that to be an
insult, any more than my calling Tang Mr. Kool-Aid. And I got to make
the Teapot calling the kettle black joke, which I thought was cute.
As for the others, I think you inferred rather than I implied.
That's a big difference. While my intellectual view is that
metaphysical beliefs and a need for certainty are a function of fear,
specifically fear of impermanence, I wasn't trying to make a personal
claim about you, but more about the culture. I also think acquiring
material possessions is a lot about fear as well, but if you just
bought a new house, I wouldn't mean to imply that you were a
yellow-bellied coward! Do you understand what I mean here? I'd
rather my general views about relationships between, say, beliefs and
fear, not be taken to be specific claims about specific people, as
each individual case is unique.
I'll watch how I phrase things like this in the future to avoid this kind of misunderstanding.
It's not just about handling it, as I can always delete anything too
rude; I could probably handle and enjoy flaming others, but I don't
want to get into an insult-heaving contest. Getting ideas challenged
is one thing - making accusations about a person is a step away from a
good playful debate about the ideas, as I see it. There are numerous
things wrong with me, btw, but that isn't any kind of argument that
whatever view I happen to like is wrong, as I may be a fool that
happens to have stumbled upon some really top-notch books or teachers.
I'll try to respond more mindfully and thoughtfully next time, and
reply with something like "sounds to me like you are trying to peg me:
here is what I am trying to say" without all the added fanning of flames.
Well, there is a fine line between labeling someone with a simplified
stereotype and paraphrasing back in ones own words the others view so
that they can clarify what they meant. I don't mind if you try to
explain my view, but what I didn't like was having reasons and
intentions attributed to me which I didn't have. Which is what you
didn't like either, when you thought I inferred you were a fundie
grounded in fear and insecurity.
Again, I'll have to pay more attention to what I write and think about
how it may be interpreted, and I'll try to be more clear about
criticizing views and not people. And I'll try to word my posts more
7th May 14:21
Let me jump in and make an observation, however the two of you want to take it.
I have seen Cup over the years being rather defensive, literalist and rigid, and jhayati comes in with a somewhat
strong, critical manner that may appear as overbearing and supercilious to some people, especially those who are
defensive, literalist and rigid.
I personally like jhayati's sharp, frank style, and what I take as his perceptivity and ability to shape-shift. Would
that he stuck his pins into me often!