Posted by PatK (126.96.36.199) on August 13, 2003 at 20:28:19:
In Reply to: Repression of ideas? posted by Jim Habegger on August 13, 2003 at 05:43:08:
Good to see you Nets. Anon brought up the best points.
One thing I might add, is that most of these topics can be discussed. Troubles, if they do arise, come not because the topic is discussed, but that a conclusion is agitated for. The discussions on the succession of Shoghi Effendi is the classic example - no problem discussing it, but most discussions tend to get started by those who advocate for the Remey succession, that is they are pushing a conclusion against the covenant and that is where the trouble is.
I think there can be a perception by some Baha'is that discussions which advocate a course of action, and which take place outside of established channels, may appear to be divisive, even partisan. For example, I was alarmed last year when the NSA briefly encouraged our district convention to dispense with consultation due to the availability on line venues. On line message boards, and newsgroups really are not places for Baha'i consultation: a) certain individuals can exert undue influence to convince the group, and b) the internet discussion has no authority to speak for the community - if an LSA charters a community project, the project is done by the community, but when an internet discussion resolves something, it has little to no bearing on the real world.
Some discussions, such as the one suggesting that women will be on the UHJ at a future date, can undermine the cause by creating the impression that the Baha'i Faith misrepresents itself for more widespread acceptability. I am happy to discuss it, but there is no reason at all to suppose that women will serve on the UHJ at some future date. I think Anon addressed some of the reasons why, though I could try to explain it.
kohli at ameritel.net
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