Exactly, that’s the approach I had in mind as well. Edited my post to “negative experiences.”
Forum guidelines re speech would be good, but I’d rather not have non Buddhist teachings: auras and mantras etc. Equal distribution of posts would be useful.
Such a PM group could abide by the D&D Guidelines with one modification: the theme of the chat extends to discussing the practice of early Buddhism in a civil, friendly, compassionate, skilful, and agreeable way, without giving others advice or criticism, and without claiming path attainments as per the guidelines:
Whether you are a monastic or layperson, please do not make personal claims of path attainments, meditative attainments or supernatural powers on this forum.
What qualities are meant by this?
Absorption+. What Gabriel lists here (the rest of the thread also gives relevant context & discussion).
Personally I’m fine with or without the rule about not claiming path attainments in a PM group. But perhaps others are not fine without, so then it would be a good idea to follow it.
It’s an interesting point… I also find that there isn’t really a place here to discuss how practices are explained by modern teachers. So there is a tendency towards academic discussions. But then again, this is a forum about EBTs, and it serves that purpose well.
The Watercooler category could be used to discuss how practices vary here and there, it just isn’t used in that way.
I would like nominate @Gillian as a group leader for an EBT Practice closed group experiment in which I would be interested in participating. The first post for the group could be the rules of discussion, editable by all or just by the group leader. Others could then opt in and we just see where it goes…
Why Gillian? Because Gillian doesn’t miss a thing, not the tiniest bit.
How can we decide what size the numbers should be?
I vote in favor!
What do you think @Gillian ?
THere aren’t that many of us chatting on the thread.
How about a maximum number…? 10-12?
One of the sins of software engineering was explained by Donald Knuth:
premature optimization is the root of all evil
Shall we solve the “too many” problem when it becomes a problem?
We could at least make a rule to talk about the issue when we get to 10.
Another approach is to put a timelimit of any group (e.g., “this group expires on 5/1/2019”) but have groups start up with different leaders each month. For example Mat’s group could start up in 30 days and I would join as well. Mat could make a limit in his group.
I think this is a more realistic view.
Given that PM’s are private, then SC will not have a ‘policy or guidelines’ for what occurs in private correspondence.
As such an overarching set of guidelines don’t make sense, since there is no-one to oversee them, and no-one to look at compliance.
However, when someone opens a PM, that person chooses who is invited, and then it is up to those invited to determine what happens while that thread is open. I don’t see any other way that it could operate. So if people choose to set up guidelines within that thread - then so be it - but it is wholly private and self regulated.
The watercooler is not suitable as per the posts above from Ven Sujato.
The difference between:
- A sign on the door that says “Please take off your shoes when entering the house. If you keep your shoes on you are subject to moderation. If you keep your shoes on even after being moderated, we might ban you from the house” (Discuss & Discover/well-functioning forums in general)
- A sign on the door that says “Please take off your shoes”/no sign at all (a PM group)
Just now returning home after walking barefoot in the streets I note that I am in compliance.
If there is a PM group started along these lines, I’d very much like to be a part of it, if that’s at all possible. I get so much out of discussions here.
It’s very lovely of you to think of me, … but really?
My personal reality is that doing a share of the moderation on D&D uses a lot of both my energy and available online time, and that it would be foolish for me to add to that load.
… Anyway this group is already making good headway thrashing out some parameters within which to function, and with goodwill this process will develop and mature.
It’s easy to get started. Anyone here can send a PM to someone else and when it’s sent the bottom of the thread will look like this:
Both of you will be able to click on ‘INVITE’ and then use two or three clicks to generate an invitation to others; I think that it has to be done one by one tho.
Thank you, Gillian.
Mat, since you expressed an interest in rules, perhaps you would extend the first invitation?
I’m interested. You can also stop inviting when your group is full.
I’m happy to contribute. Whippet started the thread…?
Just to note, people can and should flag any abusive behaviour that occurs in a PM. Moderators have access to PMs that have been flagged and I believe can only assess things in accordance with the community guidelines. Even though ordinarily moderators cannot follow PMs as they can the rest of forum content, the boarder guidelines do still apply to PMs
As an added personal point of view, I’d be super suspicious about any practice group that wanted to stray very far from the guidelines because they are just a long-winded way of saying: “be decent and reasonably respectful and considerate” (never mind the fact that they were drafted with close reference to the suttas).