Thursday, December 11, 2014

Making time

Some time ago I suspended my Internet projects indefinitely. Now I'm thinking I might go back online in February or March, if I can learn habits I want to learn before then, including:
- making time in my life now, for some things that I'm hoping will some day happen in my life.
- spending more time with some friends and family members, learning to be a better friend.
- getting some things done from my list of Things to Do.

Mostly what I want to make time for, sometimes at home and sometimes outside, is to spend with some friends that I'm hoping to have some day. Those will be friends who will be following Baha'u'llah, and studying and practicing with some of their friends, learning to work with neighbors to help improve the community life for everyone in a neighborhood, using what we're learning from Baha'u'llah. Those friends of mine and I will spend time together in fellowship, in my home and elsewhere, and exchanging ideas and experiences in helping to spread the knowledge and love of God.

I'm learning to make time for that in my life now, without waiting until it starts happening. I'm using that time now to practice things I might do with those friends in the future.

I might go back online in February or March, if I'm satisfied with my progress in learning those habits. For now what I have in mind to do, if and when I go back online, is to spend time with people following ideologies opposed to mine, learning to encourage and support them, in their best efforts that I can see, to help spread the knowledge and love of God.

Thursday, October 23, 2014


I've suspended all of my Internet projects indefinitely, but I don't want to abandon my blogs completely. I'll try to say briefly where I was in my projects, and what I might do if I ever go back online.

Please don't anyone ever hesitate to comment or to contact me, just because I haven't posted for many months. I want to remember that, myself, when I find blogs that interest me, without any recent posts.

I'll list some of my past projects and potential future projects, then discuss where I am with them.

1. Fellowship with some of the people I see being stigmatized and marginalized the most.
2. Practicing and promoting better conduct on the Internet.
3. Bringing the framework for action into online communities.
4. Learning to nurture the spirit of faith and the love of God, in myself and in others, everywhere all the time, and to help spread His knowledge and love far and wide.
5. Promoting more conscious awareness and appreciation of the spirit of faith, and of its role not only in each person's life but in improving the world for all people everywhere, rather than for some at the expense of others.
6. Practicing and promoting fellowship across religious and other ideological divides.
7. Encouraging and supporting individual initiatives outside of popular bandwagons.
8. Putting myself in the line of fire of prejudices against people promoting ideas and interests contrary to popular Baha'i thinking.
9. Freeing myself from my own prejudices and ill will, and learning to never depreciate anyone.
10. Finding more people who want to be candles for God, or some equivalent of that in non-theistic language, and learning to encourage and support them, especially in spreading the knowledge and love of God, and in serving the best interests of their communities.
11. Promoting free software, the creative commons and other movements for a more loving economy.
12. Practicing and promoting richer and deeper online communications.
13. Practicing and promoting online consultation on what any and all of us can do about Baha'i social issues.
14. Trying to create a more friendly environment in Baha'i Internet discussions for people I see being stigmatized and marginalized in those discussions, in both camps.
15. Finding people to collaborate with in my projects.
16. Learning what kinds of online interpersonal experiences help open people's hearts to God and attract them to His Kingdom.
17. Helping to develop online training for people who are learning to make better use of the Internet to help spread the knowledge and love of God.
18. To learn, practice and promote what all of us can do for the most ravaged people all over the world.
19. Practicing and promoting wider and better exchanges of ideas and experiences in studying the Revelation of God and putting it into practice; for example between people with opposing ideologies; and between people trained and experienced in various academic fields, and people wholeheartedly immersed in the framework for action the House of Justice is promoting.

If and when I go back online, I imagine some of my highest priorities will be finding blogs and other initiatives to encourage and support, practicing and promoting fellowship across religious and other ideological divides, learning to never depreciate anyone, and learning to free myself from all ill will.

After years of putting myself in the line of fire of people's prejudices, I don't see much promise in it, so I've considered giving it up. One reason I might continue is help me resist my own temptations to comply.

The kinds of blogs and other initiatives I'll be looking for, to encourage and support, might be especially ones I see best serving these purposes:
- Spreading awareness and appreciation of the gift of faith, and the knowledge and love of God, far and wide.
- Fellowship across religious and other ideological divides.
- Individual and small group initiatives outside of popular bandwagons, especially ones stigmatized and marginalized by them.
- Learning and promoting what any and all of us can do to help rebuild the world's most ravaged communities, near and far.
- Online training for those purposes.

I'm reconsidering the idea of trying to bring the framework for action into online communities, not to abandon it but to consider some adaptations that might be needed before I can even start.

I wrote a lot in the past about Baha'i feuding, and what I call the Talisman liberation movement, and addressing Baha'i social issues, and freeing the Faith from its shackles. Three of the four people in the liberation camp that I was most interested in excommunicated me, and I withdrew from all of those discussions, years ago. I'm still on friendly terms with the other one, but that one has mostly lost interest in those issues.

Even though I don't see as much of the open feuding as I saw before, I still see Baha'is online divided into the same camps, with the same animosities; and I still see the same harm in it, and the same community issues behind it, that I've always seen. I haven't given up trying to address all that, but I have given up trying to do anything about it in Internet discussions, even if I go back online. In fact I've given up hope of having any fruitful discussions about any social issues in any online social forum.