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Disruptive and Controversial Posts
May 12, 2005
7:34 am
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Worried_Dad
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Some people have unresolved authority issues. They do not like following the rules of a civil society. They can’t follow a rule in order to save their lives—it is almost perverse.

They think they know everything and love to hear themselves talk. Consequently, they are incapable of learning, that is to say, they are incapable of integrating experience, cognition and feelings to achieve helpful changes in their behavior.

They act as if they just can not stand to see others find peace and friendship and understanding. When they observe authentic social discernment processes lead to understanding and fellowship they get upset.

On public websites, these types of people deliberately post off topic, out of context. They post inflammatory and hurtful comments where they know will do the most harm. They do not appear to have conscience about how their behavior hurts others.

Often, when confronted, these people can offer no justification for their behavior beyond obfuscation, denial and name calling. They offer no substantive arguments and in no way contribute to the conversation. They engage in hit-and-run type behavior. They use pretty words that are empty of meaning and substance. They swing between outright aggression to covert aggression and passive aggressive behavior.

Sometimes, a person with a countercultural ethic and good rhetorical skills can function as a thought-provoking “devil’s advocate,” or at least can be entertaining. Most often though, they function as spoilers. And they seem to like it. On a good day, they function like naughty children and just annoy the heck out of people. Often they function as vandals, creating discord and chaos. When sensitive and vulnerable people read their words, they can function as terrorists.

These people can be confusing and frustrating to deal with. You can’t reason with them. The perversity they display in their pain-causing behavior is offensive to gentle, peace loving people. A literate, open-minded society tries to accept them and tolerate them and lead them by example. The most mature and self controlled among us just ignore them.

I am not the most mature and self-controlled person here, however.

May 12, 2005
7:34 am
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Worried_Dad
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I enjoy reasoned debate. I am not above controversy. I will play “devil’s advocate” when it seems like the intellectual rigor of resulting conversations will be stimulating, thought provoking. I have learned a lot and I still have a lot to learn about how to do that in a way that is graceful and respectful.

I enjoy Socratic dialogue. I find pleasure in reasoned debate, and the skillful use of informal logic. I am fortunate that my early experiences were with teachers who enjoyed students who could give them a “run for their money.” Consequently I do not have what are conventionally known as “authority issues.” I have an authentic approach to authority, that is to say, I am realistic about the source and validity of my own authority on any given subject. I am willing, eager even, to confront and dialogue with authority figures who appear to be using unfair means, invalid logic or inaccurate representations of fact in their exercise of authority. I am not an ass-kisser.

At the same time, I do not feel a need to confront and defy authority figures just for the hell of it. I aspire to be sensitive to the delicate balance that authentic authority figures try to achieve in their work. I aspire to be sensitive to the vulnerability of people who offer leadership.

Like I said, I still have a lot to learn about doing those things in a conscious and socially responsible way. I understand that the process of transference can lead me to overreact to authority figures when I perceive them as being unfair. I am easily triggered. I have a big mouth.

I have let my feelings get unnecessarily hurt here when the SC and others have corrected my behavior. I have indulged in one of the most melodramatic and vulgar displays of temper to besmirch this site in years. Using eloquent rhetoric and skillful informal logic and just plain whining I proceeded to rip the SC three new assholes. In fact, if I had just taken three deep breaths a day for three days and thought about it, I would have understood that the SC was merely saying to me “WD, be sensitive of context and post appropriately.”

I feel conscience about hurting the SC’s feelings that day, and I feel guilty about the confusion, and hurt and fear that I may have caused sensitive people, new people, and people in crisis to feel that day. And I feel embarrassed that I let my emotions cloud my reasoning and lead me to antisocial behavior. Whatever valid “points” I was making that day, I functioned as a disruptive person. In the final analysis, I was throwing a tantrum. For an intelligent person, I sometimes act in the stupidest and most immature ways. How embarrassing.

May 12, 2005
7:34 am
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Worried_Dad
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Emperorsclothes, I address you:

You seem like an intelligent person. You are well-informed. Your rhetorical skills are formidable. You have at times functioned here as a supportive, insightful, and thought-provoking poster.

In my opinion, your last post on the thread about Guidelines for religious speech on this site constituted verbal abuse of the SC, and also verbal abuse of each and every person who has struggled with this rich, controversial issue in an authentic way. In my opinion, you indulged in the forms of verbal abuse known as name calling and in discounting and devaluing. And you did so in a very passive aggressive or covert aggressive manner. That is unacceptable to me.

Please imbue more of the quality of consciousness to your posts. Please be mindful of context and restrict controversial posts about controversial material, when you know that they will be inflammatory, to the Liberation Brew threads. Be mindful that there are new people here. There are vulnerable people here. There are people in crisis here. I implore you to be mindful of how your words may affect those people.

Please be mindful of the fact that the SC actually has to work for a living, and does not have the time or energy to compose essays of response to address each and every controversial statement made here. This site is offered, at great personal expense, and with no possibility of personal gain, as a public service.

I beg of you: work a little harder, or better yet, a lot harder in trying to use valid logic and accurate facts to your posts. Do not apply labels unless you have solid evidence and reasoning to support your use of those labels—otherwise you are indulging in name calling.

This is my support group. This is my therapy group. I like these people, I owe these people, and I feel very protective towards these people.

If you have a problem or issue with the guidelines for this site, address those issues here in Liberation Brew. Please do not disrupt the authentic social processes of support and discernment happening on the support thread portion of this site.

And if you have a problem with the SC, either take it up with the SC via email, or else take it up with me. Like I said, I am not an ass-kisser. I will give your ideas full and authentic consideration, I promise. If you will at least consider the idea that there is a difference between authentic conflict and antisocial behavior I will respect you.

But if you do not make at least a token effort at respecting the nature, purpose and rules of this site, it will be hard for me to take you seriously.

May 12, 2005
2:50 pm
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CODA_Mom
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WD,

We were all overreacting a bit during that time. I must say that you certainly have a gift in being able to use words logically, reasonably and to get your point across, usually in a respectful manner.

Many others, however, do not have this gift. As a matter of fact, many do not even know how to handle anger appropriately. If they did, they would not be posting on a site for codependency. I do not like to debate issues because I tend to sputter and spit when I should be calm and logical. I'm not trying to debate or even challenge you here, just giving my own observation.

Say what you must, but keep in mind that many of us have never been thru what happened last week and reacted in different or dysfunctional ways. Some fled, some fought, some tossed mud, some tossed even worse stuff...I was even angry with the SC and said so (btw, SC, I do apologize for my part in making your job here more difficult).

Perhaps instead of singling any one person out, we should all look at our own behavior and see what we have learned thru all of this. Maybe we need to learn to accept one another unconditionally, or not to hold resentments, or the glaring fact that we need to learn how to express our anger in a more appropriate way.

When someone is singled out, many times feelings of shame creep up within that person and they react from that point of reference. Shame is what makes others lash out when personally attacked.

Please don't take these comments as an attack, WD. Just my own views, my two cents' worth, feel free to disagree, it is your right and I respect that.

Peace,

CM

May 12, 2005
3:14 pm
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angel4U
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Beautifully said Coda_Mom! and so right on! (it's the way I see it as well, anyway!)

Gosh, I better get back to work. I am reading during my breaks and this site keeps sucking me back in today. So many good learning experiences and thoughts being shared.

Have a wonderful, blessed day guys!

angel4u

May 12, 2005
4:09 pm
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Worried_Dad
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Like I said, I am not the most mature or self controlled person here. You are much more forgiving and trusting than me.

Yes, people became emotional about this issue--mainly the people with strong religious beliefs.

This poster however, is unique in that they have expressed the strongest opinions, used the most emotionally charged language, yet also professed to not have particularly strong religious beliefs.

This particular poster is unique in that they have resorted outright verbal abuse, which persists, days after others have settled down some. I do not appreciate the "fascist" comments, however.

This poster is bright, and has good rhetorical skills. This is not about someone expressing themselves clumsily.

This particular poster therefore singled themselves out.

To refuse to name abuse is to condone and collude with abuse and to facilitate abuse.

I try to be civil, but I won't bite my tongue in a situation like this.

May 12, 2005
4:39 pm
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jamaicanwife
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I'm sure it is of little import, but I agree with you completely, WD.

I would also like to add that in my normal life I do enough stuffing of my emotions. This is one of the few places where I feel that it is ok to let people know what you really think. And if there is the slightest chance that someone can learn something about themself, then I think it is almost a responsibility to try to point them in that direction if they really don't seem to be getting something important.

It is not about revenge, or shaming, or otherwise singling someone out for negative treatment; it is about helping each person to understand themselves, even if the knowledge is painful.

If someone is lashing out, why should we not call them on it?

May 12, 2005
5:34 pm
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angel4U
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I don't think anyone is saying lashing out is ok, or that it's not ok to express to them that something they said bothered them. I think it's more of how we do that, and learning how maybe we can do it in a more effective way than lashing back.

MANY people lashed out here last week, and I even saw some that were being supported for it ... which (as I saw it) upped the anty for them thinking it was ok to do so. I, personally, was appalled by all that was going on and had to bite my lip ... and "hard"! But I also accept that not everyone is able to do that, and not everyone knows how to express their true feelings in an appropriate manner. Especially when something is so close to our hearts, and we feel it is being attacked. On another thread the SC called it "button pushing". And I believe we all can relate to what that is. I think I did that to you once, JW, during a discussion about abuse and your dad. I sensed you were upset, but didn't get fully why until I asked you and you shared with me why. If you would never have told me, I would never have known that that was a sensitive topic for you, and that how I had responded about the topic was upsetting to you. I learned from it, and I think that's what CM was suggesting.

I can't speak for the poster you are referring to, and I am not familiar with their usual style, so i am not discounting your feelings WD. But my thoughts when I first read their posts were that since I did not see them post at all last week, they may have just started reading all the threads and just caught the bug that everyone else felt before. And maybe what you thought was someone trying to stir up old trouble, was someone that saw it as recent trouble for them. Like I said, it's just another thought ... I can't speak for the real reason. Has anyone asked them directly as to why this troubled them so much (has anyone asked anyone for that matter?), or are we just making assumptions still that people are trying to cause trouble?

As an fyi - I went the other site in search of why some people would feel as some expressed on AAC about religion and I received much feedback that I think you'll find interesting and informative ... I had some posts where many people shared that they relate some of their past experiences (some pretty horrible) to people of religion ... and because of this relation, have a hard time accepting certain religious talk as it brings back that pain.

Now if everyone last week would have opened up and said this, I think most of us that were in favor of keeping the religious guidelines would have been able to be more compassionate. Don't you?

Sometimes I think it does take things like this for us to dig deeper within ourselves to learn why things are upsetting to us, and to others by open ourselves up to a deeper understanding of these situations when they arise ... rather than quickly judging them on their behavior. It's not always easy, I'll admit. But it can truly be a great learning experience if you allow it to be. It sure has been one for me.

angel4U

May 12, 2005
6:02 pm
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angel4U
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Added note: I think you'll find on the opposing end that those that were strongly supporting keeping relgious talk were in favor of it because they found comfort in it (that would be me, as well as others I have heard from).

Sooo what do you have when you have 2 opposing views? ... A conflict of interests, which as we know, can sometimes start wars just as it did.

May 12, 2005
7:09 pm
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jamaicanwife
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You raise an interesting point, A4U. I do tend to react based on history more than current situations - not something I'm proud of, and my husband does not love it, either - so there might be an element of my response to the post in question that comes from previous encounters.

And faith is comforting, it is supposed to be, but the support threads had started to sound like a fundamentalist gathering - You're in love with a married man? You're a sinner! You feel lonely? You need God!

That sort of simplistic thinking and dismissive attitude to other people's pain helps no one.

May 12, 2005
7:20 pm
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gingerleigh
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Fabulous point, JW!

May 12, 2005
7:55 pm
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Worried_Dad
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As the SC said,

"Folks who read {did the SC mean "write?" inflammatory comments (such as Emperors Clothes), are asked to address the inaccuracies. Supporting those comments, or brushing over them, goes against the mission & purpose of this site as well which is honest & straightforward communication."

I may be mistaken, but I interpret this post by the SC as meaning that it is appropriate to confront innacuracies that are used to support inflammatory comments. Particularly when those comments are patently offensive and abusive. It is innappropriate to support or ignore those comments.

The heck of it is that even in the most heated parts of this controversy, none of the fervent Christians really offended me. I was a bit frustrated by their misinterpreting the guideline, but they never offended me.

Emperorsclothes has posted the most unfounded, venomous and inflammatory comments on this situation, and is not even a Christian! What's that about?

May 12, 2005
11:48 pm
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Emperorsclothes
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TO WD & JW

Freudian Projection
The following is a collection of definitions of projection from orthodox psychology texts. In this system the distinct mechanism of projecting own unconscious or undesirable characteristics onto an opponent is called Freudian Projection.

"A defense mechanism in which the individual attributes to other people impulses and traits that he himself has but cannot accept. It is especially likely to occur when the person lacks insight into his own impulses and traits."

"The externalisation of internal unconscious wishes, desires or emotions on to other people. So, for example, someone who feels subconsciously that they have a powerful latent homosexual drive may not acknowledge this consciously, but it may show in their readiness to suspect others of being homosexual."

"Attributing one's own undesirabe traits to other people or agencies, e.g., an aggressive man accuses other people of being hostile."

"The individual perceives in others the motive he denies having himself. Thus the cheat is sure that everyone else is dishonest. The would-be adulterer accuses his wife of infidelity."

"People attribute their own undesirable traits onto others. An individual who unconsciously recognises his or her aggressive tendencies may then see other people acting in an excessively aggressive way."

"Projection is the opposite defence mechanism to identification. We project our own unpleasant feelings onto someone else and blame them for having thoughts that we really have."
2b. (General) Projection
Here projection is assuming that others act or perceive similarly – according to this definition it is not necessary for a projected trait to be undesirable or unconscious. Projection is probably inherent in social animals and the single most important psychological mechanism. The following are given as examples:

Individual A assumes that B sees the colour red as he does, until informed that B is colour-blind;

Someone who never lies is easy to deceive because he projects his truthfulness onto others, assuming that others are honest also;

‘It takes one to know one’;

An inept con-man fears that others are trying to cheat him, signals his fear and alerts others;

(Freudian) An individual who possesses malicious characteristics, but who is unwilling to perceive himself as a protagonist, convinces himself that his opponent feels and would act the same way.

May 12, 2005
11:48 pm
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Zinnie
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Angel (and all others),

Something that you said above about going to the religious based site, about how many suffered abuse at the hands of those spouting religion.

There is another thread that Worried Dad started here on Libs - about "Jesus would support..." if you read that, you will read my entry about my cousin and understand what and where I'm coming from.

Also, my first husband - and I will give you a little back ground because you were not "here" when I shared this on the site - anyway he was born out of wedlock in the 40's - a very disgraceful thing. His Mother married a man who was "right and proper" even an elder or deacon in their church. Everyone held this man up on a pedastal because he was so involved in his church, could spout off any quote of the Bible at any given time, and married my Mother-in-Law and taking in her "bastard child" which is how he was referred to. He also beat both of them, and should have rotten in jail for the horrors he put my husband through all the while quoting the Bible, and justifying his actions by telling my husband that this was his fate because he was born a bastard. He never asked to be born.

When he was still young, about between the ages of six or seven - his Uncle (my husband Uncle) and Aunt came to visit. The family didn't think much of Uncle Terry because he worked all the time, only went to church for weddings and funerals and was really what would be termed a simple salt of the earth man. He took my husband from that house, and gave him a good home and a loving family. To his dying day my husband always said that had it not been for his Uncle Terry he didn't know where he would have ended up.

Yet - Uncle Terry was "not good enough" but his step father was -

Yes, there is great comfort in faith, but sadly too many people in this world hide behind it. Not just Christianity, but any kind of religion. I myself am a Christian, but I hate being "preached" to.

I also agree and understand what JW is saying - when we bring a problem to the board - such as in love with a married man, well O.K. we know on many levels it is wrong. Not just biblically, I believe even in a civil ceremony of marriage the fidelity issue is stated - it's my belief that the poster is perhaps looking for a way to deal with the issue, not be judged. Not saying that we should not point out when some one is in the wrong (for all we know maybe they don't realize it, it's often a different story when it's happening to us), but showing compassion and sometimes tough love is what is needed. There are times when a quote from the Bible does say it all, but, again I think we have to understand who we are talking with - perhaps the person might be offended.

I know I'm rambling, I'm tired - but, this thread caught my eye.

Z.

May 13, 2005
5:01 am
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Worried_Dad
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Emperorsclothes,

There you go doing it again.

So let me see. Because I secretly want to violate the posting guidelines and secretly believe that the SC is a controlling, oppressive, witch hunting, fascist, I somehow "projected" that out into the world and psychically compelled YOU to say and do those things?

Very funny.

Well, can't say I didn't try.

May 13, 2005
6:24 am
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CODA_Mom
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Zinnie,

I "hear" only too well what you are saying, and it is sad. As a counselor (who also happens to be a Christian), some days I am ready to take a whip and clear out the church. The situations that I am called on to help out with should not be happening [in the church]. It helps to remember during those times that "except by the grace of God, there go I".

One thing that has not been brought out here but that I need to mention, is that there is also a flip side to these discussions. People have been complaining that they have been unfairly preached to, or abused by, Christians in some way during their lives (which is very sad and should not ought to be). As a Christian, there have also been times that I have been abused or mistreated in some way by non-Christians. There is a line of thinking that, for some reason, it is more inexcusable when the abuser is a non-Christian. We are told to "turn the other cheek" and let things go.

Why would Jesus have taught this? I firmly believe that if Christians did not turn the other cheek, but rather faced the abusive individual squarely, that all he** would break loose. The abuser could not stand against the wrath, or we would have situations the same as on this board but on a larger scale. Jesus called us to be peacemakers, as much as it depends on us. I know that I can destroy someone with my tongue or even make life really miserable for them, but I choose to follow a higher purpose and turn the other cheek. There are situations that do require intervention, those where we need to confront and face squarely (child and/or spousal abuse, drugs, etc.)

Sorry to digress here, (I'm tired, too) but my point is that there is abuse on both sides of the fence. I know only too well the damage well-meaning Christians can do. Just wanted to call attention to the fact that non-Christians have done much damage to Christians, too. Why are only the Christians being singled out here?

Just my opinion, nice to meet ya!

CM

May 13, 2005
10:05 am
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jamaicanwife
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If a poster gives bad advice, then we should all call them on it. If something is said that could hurt more than help, we should all be able to say so. Perhaps part of the problem is that if the poster spouts Bible verses, people are often unwilling to say what they really feel because they are afraid of upsetting God.

Just introducing another perspective.

May 13, 2005
10:22 am
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Cici
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Chillax, peeps. Our differences are what make us beautiful.

That said, I hate hate HATE it when people copy/paste copyrighted text and don't cite their source. Illegal, immoral, intellectually lazy. Not an attack, an observation.

My sister always says this to my 5 year old nephew when he's having a temper tantrum: "Use your own words."

Signed,
Anti-Freud since I got my psych degree. That guy was looney, obsessed with his penis, and derrived sexual pleasure from urinating on his mother's bed.

May 13, 2005
10:46 am
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CODA_Mom
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Chillax, peeps. Our differences are what make us beautiful

Ah-ma chillin' Cici...sure beats getting overheated 😉

I do so agree with you on this.

May 13, 2005
11:49 am
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angel4U
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Hey all,

Ok, I was not going to respond today because I am in over my head, but happened to peek in on my break and felt the need to reply. So here goes ...

I consider us all very intelligent people, so I am going to throw this out there because it is what "I" (and you don't have to agree, just my insight) truly see as the real problem ...

Can't we just simply agree that this whole thing is not as simple as saying that the intent of ALL Christian people and/or ALL people that quote the bible is to inflict guilt and shame on people. And that the intent of all non-Christian people is to do the opposite. Don't you think that is generalizing a tad bit here??

I have heard so many things from people on this board and the other of what others think Christianity is about that do not coincide with my beliefs AT ALL! I find guidance and peace in God's message and in the bible, not the message that some are saying they feel is nothing but guilt, shame, witch-hunting (WD - I am not referring to EC's statement ... this is someone else that referred to Christianity as about witch-hunting and evil).

Generalizing like this is just as unintelligent as saying all people that do not believe in my God are evil and should go to hell. And I do not believe that and would never say that.

Actually my thoughts go even a step further, and I am sure some of you professional counselors can understand this ... I think much evil is caused more by biological factors and social upbringing. Not because they are the devil, or that God is punishing them, or because they don't believe in a specific religion.

Can we all just agree that everyone has had different experiences and therefore are percieving things differently. I have done and still am doing my job in trying to understand why people would be so effected by even hearing the word Christianity or the word of God. Why? Because I care about people, and I care about unity. I hate separation based on anything! I wish others would put in the same effort. I am also trying to be cautious/respectful about when and to whom I say anything when it comes to God, as my intent is to help, not to offend. Sometimes I might screw up, but I would hope that people could learn something by all of this ... especially to be able to say kindly "I know you are trying to help, but how you are doing so is not working for me. I am in need of a more non-spiritual answer rather than a spiritual one."

I also wish that there was some private chat room here, because I do think there are people that are in need of that kind of help because it was they are used to and can relate to.

just my 2 cents

angel4u

May 13, 2005
12:04 pm
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Cici
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Well.

My issue with people copy/pasting stuff - it also goes along with bible versus, to me. I think that real, sincere guidance and help comes from other individuals here. Quoting Freud, quoting the bible - all well and good, but someone else's words.

May 13, 2005
12:05 pm
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Worried_Dad
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angel4u,

Yes, people have different perceptions.

However, this thread is not about different perceptions and it is not about Christianity.

This thread is about disruptive posting, what stand, we as an online culture want to take on the issue, and what we want to do about it.

The specific example offered are some verbally abusive posts by EC.

So this thread is also about verbal abuse.

May 13, 2005
12:14 pm
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angel4U
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I here what you're saying, Cici. But if we take that another step .. I do think there are many people (even me sometimes) that have a hard time putting their thoughts into words. And sometimes the "perfect" message jumps out at me in a book, an article, and even the Bible .. that says it better than I can. I get spiritual emails from people all the time, and I have never taking any of them offensive. Maybe it's easier when I know the sender, because I know their intent (it's a sign of affection and caring to me). It may not be as personal as someone writing to me, but not everyone is able to do that. And if I don't understand the message, I ask.

May 13, 2005
12:20 pm
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Worried_Dad
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I don't mind some cutting and pasting. I cut and pasted some scripture recently in another thread.

EC, however, cuts and pastes as their primary mode of communication.

And in this case, it is another example of the kind of passive aggresive communication I described at the top of this thread. Rather than respond directly to criticism about behavior, cutting and pasting is used to effect a kind of name calling. Sort of a "I know you are but what am I?"

I can't read minds. But for some types of behavior it is not necessary to know what is going on in a person's head. The important thing is to address the behavior.

May 13, 2005
12:22 pm
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eve
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Angel,

I think you are missing the point that Worried Dad was trying to make with this thread. He was adressing Emperorsclothes' posts, and I agree wholeheartedly with his opinon on that.

But since emperorsclothes now has started to read up about projection, maybe he/she will do some thinking about why he/she did those posts.

Or I could interpret his/her last post as an attempt of passive agression towards WD and SC - but why should I. No, I think that emperor.. is well on the way to find some deep truths about his/herself - because what upsets us to the point of atacking others needs to be closely looked at to learn about ourself.

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