What Are Our Priorities?

All research or scholarship questions
Guest

What Are Our Priorities?

Postby Guest » Tue Jan 03, 2006 12:32 pm

No offense to anyone here, but I think it is fair to assume that our priorities as Baha'is and people of good faith are out of touch on so many levels when a thread on masturbation gets over 1800 views while a thread on a wrongly imprisoned Baha'i gets only a little over 50. By the way the thread on masturbation is the 2nd most viewed on the current page of threads. What's up with all of this?

Baha'i Warrior
Posts: 753
Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 10:07 am
Location: U.S.A.

Postby Baha'i Warrior » Tue Jan 03, 2006 3:25 pm

Guest, my friend, you make a very, very good point! I was thinking the same thing you were, but it seems like some people choose to beat a dead horse and revive old threads, especially if they have to do with sex. Sex sells. Almost every time when I go to a Baha'i youth conference, there will always be questions (related to sex) like can Baha'is do this and do that. If I were the moderator on this forum, I would do the mature thing and lock that thread. Unless of course I was into that stuff myself...

—Warrior

Baha'i Warrior
Posts: 753
Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 10:07 am
Location: U.S.A.

Postby Baha'i Warrior » Tue Jan 03, 2006 3:30 pm

But on the other hand it may seem political if we said stuff about the wrongly imprisoned Baha'i, like if I were to say in response: "Iran is asking for it." lol. But it's a very bad situation and it is good that the world is becoming more aware of these things and hopefully soon we will see Iran change (I'm not saying how it's going to change :wink: ) because it is a very holy place for Baha'is.

—Warrior

Jonah
Site Admin
Posts: 411
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2003 1:25 pm
Location: St Catharines, Ontario (near Niagara Falls)
Contact:

Postby Jonah » Tue Jan 03, 2006 4:26 pm

If I were the moderator on this forum, I would do the mature thing and lock that thread

Anonymous Warrior, you know that I'm the moderator and I don't think I've shown myself to be excessively immature. I'll close the <a href=http://bahai-library.com/forum2/viewtopic.php?t=93>thread</a> on masturbation if/when it degenerates from a civil conversation, which thus far hasn't happened.

Since the majority of posts in that thread are by you, including the two most recent, I think you agree.

-Jonah

Baha'i Warrior
Posts: 753
Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 10:07 am
Location: U.S.A.

Postby Baha'i Warrior » Tue Jan 03, 2006 5:40 pm

Jonah wrote:Anonymous Warrior, you know that I'm the moderator and I don't think I've shown myself to be excessively immature.


What I mean is, if you are a Baha'i why do you let people on this forum have conversations that obviously go against the teachings, and why do you let people post things that are obviously covenant breaker attacks? You should take a look at other Baha'i forums. When those moderators smell mischief, they lock a thread or delete it immediately.

And also why do you let a thread about "masturbation" continue on a Baha'i forum? This is something kind of taboo and not a good thing to always have as an active topic. The UHJ even states that this is something we shouldn't focus too much of our attention on. Based on this knowledge, you should take appropriate action.

—Warrior

Guest

Postby Guest » Tue Jan 03, 2006 6:09 pm

Hi. Original poster here. I think the focus has shifted so allow me to bring it back. By no means am I suggesting anything be censored. I trust the administrators to keep things objective and end threads that are vulgar or insidious. My point was that we Baha'is and people of good faith have to really ask ourselves what's going on when the #2 hottest topic on an academic site is masturbation. I mean c'mon. Why don't we talk about preparing for something that's never gonna happen in any of our lifetimes or even our great, great, great, great...grandchildren's: the coming of the next Manifestation. Oh wait, that's the #1 hottest topic. My bad.

Jonah
Site Admin
Posts: 411
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2003 1:25 pm
Location: St Catharines, Ontario (near Niagara Falls)
Contact:

Postby Jonah » Tue Jan 03, 2006 8:43 pm

why do you let people post things that are obviously covenant breaker attacks?

Anonymous Warrior, you know I immediately delete anything posted to this forum that's a "Covenant Breaker attack". If you ever find anything on this forum that you think even <i>might</i> be a CB attack, you <a href=http://bahai-library.com/forum2/privmsg.php?mode=post&u=2>private message</a> me promptly.

obviously against the teachings

I've never seen any statement that says it's "against the teachings" to discuss masturbation, or any other topic on this forum. Again, I know you'll tell us promptly if you find that any statement here contravenes any of the Writings.

-Jonah

Hasan
Posts: 194
Joined: Wed Jun 30, 2004 10:03 am
Location: Lima - Perú
Contact:

Postby Hasan » Tue Jan 03, 2006 11:06 pm

Warrior, take a breath, keep your sword. :wink: I understand some posting are provocative, but they are not so much to close them. It is not easy to be moderator of this kind of list, we should be balanced ; many times discussions are sparkling, but I know Jonah is always watching any excess.

Bahá'ís should seek to be many-sided, normal and well-balanced, mentally and spiritually. We must not give the impression of being fanatics but at the same time we must live up to our principles."
(Letter from the Universal House of Justice to an individual believer, March 19, 1938: Bahá'í Journal of the United Kingdom, No. 217, p. 7, June 1973)



Hasan

CJ

Postby CJ » Wed Jan 04, 2006 12:54 am

Baha'i Warrior wrote:And also why do you let a thread about "masturbation" continue on a Baha'i forum? This is something kind of taboo and not a good thing to always have as an active topic. The UHJ even states that this is something we shouldn't focus too much of our attention on. Based on this knowledge, you should take appropriate action.

perhaps people are accessing this topic because it's something they are interested in, in consulting with other Baha'is so that they can better figure out how to have a pure mind and to serve God better. why are you assuming that they have impure motives when accessing the post?

Indeed, the writings of our Faith say that we are to consult about everything, not pick and choose topics based on how comfortable we are with them

perhaps many Baha'is are a little uncomfortable with dealing with this subject in person and so a forum like this can help us in these instances.

Also if you look you will see that the pornography thread had a very small number of views, compared to the one on masturbation

Jonah
Site Admin
Posts: 411
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2003 1:25 pm
Location: St Catharines, Ontario (near Niagara Falls)
Contact:

Postby Jonah » Wed Jan 04, 2006 4:58 am

If you'll forgive the indelicacy, when I first read the first post in this thread, I immediately thought of a recent story from the Seattle Times, reporting on an internet phenomenon from 2005: <a href="http://archives.seattletimes.nwsource.com/cgi-bin/texis.cgi/web/vortex/display?slug=danny30&date=20051230">Horse sex story was online hit</a>.

In case that URL goes offline, I'll copy the text below:
Friday, December 30, 2005
Danny Westneat

<b>Horse sex story was online hit</b>

As I look back at the year in news, it's clear I should have focused more on people having sex with horses.

That's the conclusion I reach after reviewing a new list of the year's top local news stories. Only this list is not the usual tedious recounting by news editors or pundits who profess to speak for you readers. This is the people's-choice list.

It's not a survey of what news you say you read.

It's what you actually read.

By tallying clicks on our Web site, we now chart the most read stories in the online edition of The Seattle Times. Software then sorts the tens of thousands of stories for 2005 and ranks them. Not by importance, impact or poetic lyricism, but by which stories compelled the most people to put finger to mouse, click, open and, presumably, read.

Which brings me back to sex with horses. The story last summer about the man who died from a perforated colon while having sex with a horse in Enumclaw was by far the year's most read article.

What's more, four more of the year's 20 most clicked-upon local news stories were about the same horse-sex incident. We don't publish our Web-traffic numbers, but take it from me — the total readership on these stories was huge.

So much so, a case can be made that the articles on horse sex are the most widely read material this paper has published in its 109-year history.

I don't know whether to ignore this alarming factoid or to embrace it.

It's not just the horse sex. The rest of the top 20 people's-choice list is eye-opening, as well.

Some of it was great storytelling, particularly a wrenching account, at No. 2, of a North Bend man finding photos on a Thai beach that captured a Canadian couple's last moments before the tsunami hit.

And there also are powerful articles on the Tacoma Mall shooting, a deadly rockslide and a local congressman admitting his vote to invade Iraq was a mistake.

But a lot of the stories on the list are what we serious-minded media professionals would imperiously call "soft." There's an article on a vanity license plate that showed the chemical formula for meth. A judge deciding a cat's life is worth exactly $45,480. Congressman Jim McDermott being featured in the book "100 People Who Are Screwing Up America."

There's not much on the so-called "issues" we're always implored to focus on, such as transportation or education. Nothing on the big campaign topics of the year, such as the monorail or gas tax. And nothing on this paper's major investigations or in-depth series.

Of the top 10 local stories as picked by Washington state editors for The Associated Press, only two show up in the people's-choice list: the contested election for governor and Joseph Duncan's alleged killing of an Idaho family.

As for me, this is my 98th column for 2005. None made the peoples' top 20 — though I have high hopes for this one because it mentions horse sex.

My local news columnist colleague, Nicole Brodeur, did get a column into the top 20. It was a great column that became a conversation piece around town. And it was about ... horse sex.

There's got to be a lesson in all this. Maybe the Web favors shorter, more emotional stories, and all you paying subscribers are happily wading through my columns on transit policy or our three-part projects.

Or, maybe, some of us are not giving readers enough of what you really want.

That's what a newspaper in Chile concluded. Las Últimas Noticias — The Latest News — was described as "a middle-of-the-road piece of nothing" until it opted to let readers choose the news.

Now every editorial decision is based on Web-traffic stats. Popular stories beget similar coverage. Unpopular stories get killed. Reporters are even paid by whose stories get the most clicks.

It sounds crass and shallow. It's also now Chile's most widely read paper.

So we in the news business enter 2006 with one eye on the future and, whether we admit it or not, one eye fixed firmly on our Web stats. It could lead to some schizophrenia, like that old Saturday Night Live skit on subliminal news:

"The state Legislature convened today in Olympia (horse sex), and Seattle officials (bestiality) requested funds for a new viaduct (perforated colon)."

This was one bizarre year, wasn't it? For the sake of my line of work, here's hoping for more of the same in 2006.
<blockquote><b>The Seattle Times' Top 20</b>

Below are the most read local news stories for 2005 as measured by online traffic at http://www.seattletimes.com. The list doesn't include national news or sports stories:

1. Enumclaw-area animal-sex case investigated

2. Couple's final photos "an echo from the grave"

3. Trespassing charged in horse-sex case

4. Election trial dispatches

5. Vanity plate shows drug formula

6. Videotapes show bestiality, Enumclaw police say

7. Fast-food shop owner takes off, employees take over

8. McDermott makes list of author's 100 worst Americans

9. Mall shooter: "World will feel my anger"

10. Tempest brews over quotes on Starbucks cups

11. Defense hawk Dicks says he now sees war as a mistake

12. Did local vice cops cross the line?

13. Hey, no cutting in line!: Two Seattle police officers only cops in the state who can bust drivers for simply cutting in line.

14. Details we can't quite comprehend: Nicole Brodeur column on horse sex.

15. Judge awards $45,480 in cat's death

16. New error found in vote tally

17. One high school — 44 valedictorians

18. Huge I-90 rockslide smashes car, kills 3 women

19. Charge filed in connection with man who died having sex with horse

20. Why state chose not to commit violent molester</blockquote>
Danny Westneat's column appears Wednesday and Friday. Reach him at 206-464-2086 or dwestneat@seattletimes.com. Copyright © 2005 The Seattle Times Company

Guest

Postby Guest » Wed Jan 04, 2006 1:54 pm

Original poster here again. That's interesting Jonah, but not suprising. It seems to me that the more we are deprived, or deprive ourselves I should say, of our fundamental human need to transcend this physical existence by a sensationalistic culture (I'm talkin about mainstream U.S. consumerism and media) the more we become obsessed with sex and violence because humans, as spiritual beings, naturally seek the mysterious. When they don't strive to transcend the material world human beings tend to seek out things here that seem unusual or bizzarr or taboo. I believe that the solution to this conundrum the presupposition that if we make transcendance of the material our ultimate goal the striving towards it will eliminate the desire to even focus on such topics as masturbation and the like.

Baha'i Warrior
Posts: 753
Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 10:07 am
Location: U.S.A.

Postby Baha'i Warrior » Wed Jan 04, 2006 2:25 pm

"Horse sex story was online hit": who cares? Pornography is an online hit, what does that prove? Do we Baha'is have to sink so low as to compare ourselves with others? People have desensitized themselves so much that the only news they want to hear has to do with murder and sex. It's the sum effect of the movies we watch, the music we listen to, the literature we read, and the world around us. Are we not instructed as Baha'is by Shoghi Effendi not to dwell on the dark side of things? So who the hell cares, some old pervert inseminates a chicken, his wife is old and the chicken looks young. I think this is exactly the stuff that we should not bother ourselves with.

Jim Boran

Postby Jim Boran » Wed Jan 04, 2006 2:38 pm

Baha'i Warrior wrote:And also why do you let a thread about "masturbation" continue on a Baha'i forum? This is something kind of taboo and not a good thing to always have as an active topic. The UHJ even states that this is something we shouldn't focus too much of our attention on. Based on this knowledge, you should take appropriate action.

Dear Warrior, I know that your concern comes from a sincere love for the Baha'i Faith and that your intention is to not allow anything to harm it. This is why I ask that you examine *how* we act to protect the Faith.

If we act in a way that itself goes against the principles and ideas of the Faith...then we have lost the battle before it is begun. And as a spiritual warrior, I'm sure you've girded your loin for victory.

Asking a moderator to shut off dialogue or discussion on a topic which may be uninteresting, taboo or distasteful to you is not in keeping with the Baha'i principle of the individual and independant investigation of truth. And this forum, after all, is for that exact purpose.

So I ask you, gently, to please continue to be a 'warrior' and keep an eye out. And I also ask that you please consider *how* you react and respond when or if you think there is something 'bad' afoot. Please make sure that you do so in such a way that is within the guiding Baha'i principles and values.

I also ask that you remind me and others of this, here and elsewhere.

You brother in 'arms'.

Baha'i Warrior
Posts: 753
Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 10:07 am
Location: U.S.A.

Postby Baha'i Warrior » Wed Jan 04, 2006 3:26 pm

Yes Jim, it seems that I could be getting the message across a bit less harshly, thanks for the advice my Baha'i brother :wink:

—Warrior

Hasan
Posts: 194
Joined: Wed Jun 30, 2004 10:03 am
Location: Lima - Perú
Contact:

Postby Hasan » Wed Jan 04, 2006 8:01 pm

Baha'i Warrior wrote:"Horse sex story was online hit": who cares? .


Yeah, who cares? I agree with warrior here.
Have a nice day!

Baha'i Warrior
Posts: 753
Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 10:07 am
Location: U.S.A.

Postby Baha'i Warrior » Thu Jan 05, 2006 4:22 pm

Cool, we agree again :wink:


Hasan wrote:
Baha'i Warrior wrote:"Horse sex story was online hit": who cares? .


Yeah, who cares? I agree with warrior here.
Have a nice day!


Return to “Discussion”