Community guidelines revision


Hum. I enjoy your point! How about simultaneously?

My wording is clumsy but here goes:

A space to share Dhamma ideas, understandings and questions using ght Speech, simultaneously strengthening our skill in Right Speech as a practice of the dharma.


Politics is everywhere when it’s seen as competition over, or differing ideas about, the use of limited resources. If “resources” are understood broadly then politics are found nearly everywhere.

The critical difference I propose is whether the communication about the politics is effective and productive on balance or not.
Now that definition comes from secular psychologist Chris Argyris, known his work on effective communication, but it appears to closely parallel key elements of Right Speech.


I can appreciate the demand on time of the moderators but I suggest not depending entirely on flagging. The situation can escalate quickly by the time it is flagged …and flagged again.

with metta


Kindly clean-up the attributions here (Feynman 2017-05-10 05:57:39 UTC #55). The 2nd quotation alone refers to the words of cmacie.


Perhaps. Or perhaps not! It seems like a version of the basic introductory guide, maybe?


Hello, much thanks for this. @Cara has now posted the guide here:


I have made the mistake of discussing politics here a couple of times and have deeply regretted my decision in both cases. There are thousands of places around the web where people can discuss politics to there heart’s content. I don’t see why another one is needed.


I was confused about what “trust levels” were in the flagging guide so I googled it. Since the flagging guide is locked, here is the link to what they are from the Discourse co-founder himself:

Might not be a bad idea to add that link to the flagging guide.


Thanks again @Mkoll
That’s now added to the flagging guide!


Quite right! At the same time, my personal view is that one of the most important parts of the community guidelines (current & proposed) is the bit under the “Skilful participation” heading:

Engage in discussions that make this forum an interesting place to be — and avoid those that do not.

I myself would extend this to taking up and avoiding responding to comments within discussions rather than just discussions as a whole.

Mods can respond to things that are flagged up, but I kinda reckon the overall quality of content here depends on the community at large taking responsibility.


I too, have been guilty of this and I too shall mend my ways. :slight_smile:


Dan, FWIW, I have always found these posts of yours to be thoughtful and beneficial. Just yesterday, I was reading the Summer Tricycle, and there is a discussion there about politics and Buddhism. Many people feel that Buddhist teachers should avoid political issues; others feel there is a nexus between Dhamma/Dharma and political issues. I fall in the latter group, and would always welcome your perspectives on social, global, political issues that resonate with Dhamma themes. I feel that these issues that concern the health and welfare of people and the planet are too important to not have strong Buddhist voices involved. There is an art and a science as to how this integration is done, but I feel that in the right context, it can be very beneficial. You have added to the positive side of the equation with your thoughtful posts, in my view.


Thanks for your thoughtful, good-natured words AnagarikaMichael, but again, trying to keep things focused on revisions for the community guidelines here (as set out in the OP), would you like to formulate these ideas into a suggestion for the guidlines update?


@Aminah…sorry I drifted off topic. My impulse was to respond to Dan the way I did, and I wasn’t mindful of the OP theme.

In terms of the guidelines update, yes, I am happy to review that in some detail. If I can offer anything of value, I"ll send it you. So far, my scan of the guidelines revealed excellent work on your and other’s parts in amending the guidelines. They look great so far. I’ll review, and if I feel I can offer anything of value, I’ll write in…




:anjal: back atcha


I was thinking that it might be beneficial to require all participants to use their real name and a picture of themselves as their username and avatar. I feel this would remove some of the anonymity that empowers some people to say things they would never say in a public setting such as a temple. I know the difficulties involved in enforcing this rule, but it might be worth some strong consideration.

Thank you, moderators, for all of your time and effort! You are collectively doing a fine job!

With Metta


The biggest difficulty would be knowing, if the name and picture is authentic.


Not if you’re living in a country more religious than Iran (Romania), with 0,2% of the population non-religious and the rest christian, most of them medieval type of christians. Nobody except my Gf knows that I’m a buddhist and I’m pretty much the only one in the country.

Even in less religous countries, it’s very strange for a person to be a buddhist and it’s not something they would want others to know. It’s probably almost as worse as being gay. I am speaking here about all other central and eastern european countries, to say nothing of the middle east. (I’ve seen a buddhist from Jordan on DW)

PS: I felt pretty strange writing “I am a buddhist” in this message, it’s the first time I say this in my life. For a moment I wanted to write “have an interest in buddhism”

EDIT: Now that I stopped to think about it, having people know that you’re gay is definitely much worse than knowing you are a buddhist or atheist. It’s not like in the middle east but definitely not too far away from that. We also just modified the constitution yesterday to make gay marriage unconstitutional and the vote was unanimous, even the party voted by hipsters voted for it. But being gay is probably a little acceptable at least among some hipsters in bucharest and in the fashion industry, while the same can not be said about buddhism since all hipsters are christian.

I actually have a gay super hipster friend and I never told him that I’m a buddhist cause just like the rest 99,8% of the population, he is a devoted christian. He’s 26 and never had a boyfriend in his life because of how hard it is to find such persons while staying undercover. He never admitted being gay to me either, he claims he is “pansexual” or “bysexual” despite being 101% gay and I’m a pretty liberal person. That’s how important it is to keep things secret in some places.

The chiefs of the romanian orthodox church, witch are known to be pretty fundamentalist, some times have claimed in the media that other christian denominations such as Catholics, Protestants etc. are worshipers of the devil and their churches to be houses of the devil, that we should burn their books and work against their proselitizing efforts, etc. So imagine how bad most people see buddhist or atheists. There was a fire in a club last year in witch 55 people died, biggest catastrophe in last 30 years in romania. The chief of the church said they deserved it because it was a rock concert (actually it was pop-rock, not even hard rock) and “I always told you that rock music is the work of the devil but you never listened, now look what happened”. And saying something “is the work of the devil” is something very serious over here, basically the worst thing you can say about something.


Much thanks, Timothy. I really see the logic of your point and also know that eg. Ven. Anālayo asks for a similar thing (at least including a picture of themselves) when participants of his online courses wish to take part in forum discussion.

At the same time, the point @dxm_dxm has articulated is an extremely real concern and surely has to outweigh attraction to the benefits of trying to remove anonymity. Actually, for myself, although I agree that at times it can give cover to people with ill-intentions, anonymity isn’t inherently problematic and there are many fair reasons for wishing to remain anonymous, from simple shyness, to the fear of persecution, to whatever else.

Saying this, this issue of opening ‘fake’/multiple accounts for disruptive purposes is also a real issue, so I don’t know if it’s worth considering including something like “where we are confident a user has created a second account in order to distort discussion or create chaos, such accounts will be closed.”

:anjal: - I also found it highly peculiar that someone like me would end up saying something like that.