Anonymity on Buddhist forums

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby muni » Fri Apr 21, 2017 9:02 am

first, we were learning that our personhood in general is an imputed fiction, and furthermore we were unlikely to ever meet each other. We were essentially anonymous anyway, even though we used our "real" names.


We have no intrinsic identity, nature is not western, eastern, northern, southern. To trust others can by practice, which stops thinking on intrinsic entities with characteristics or existences completely apart from our mind, which keeps aversion/attachment/neutral ruling and clouding our mind. Not sure a birth name is changing that. Finally we still react on (cling to) the behaviour or the colors of the so perceived "person", dependent on our own karmic traces.
I find anonymity for our own practice an opportunity to let go "what we think we are". And therefore not to be merely another theatre performer in another costume (mahayana -vajrayana...). Perhaps this need another topic.
But each can consider this and how fellows feel the best for practice, they should do, whether birth names or not.
Each one's liberation is what is important. The vow that all beings are free!!!
One thing, not anonymous we actually present our masters openly. How this is going on in the social media can be harming one's own practice in the first place and others. Behaviour as student from this or that master, is not always inspiring the trust in that very master, for fellows opportunity.

Identity is the aspect of self. H H Dalai Lama thought the suffering of identitylessness and meditation on identitylessness to pacify this, since it maintains the idea of a self, which creates all delusion by which their is suffering/harm. He has no choice then to be called H H Dalai Lama but Nature has no name. He said when you even in a night dream think to be a woman/man, this is illusion.
Longchenpa: not mind but not other than. Or not same as mind but not different neither. So are all, so is all. Dependency-emptiness. o o
:anjali:

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby Ayu » Fri Apr 21, 2017 10:51 am

Malcolm wrote:
Quay wrote:
So your source is a name given to you by other people? Interesting concept of a source.


When we know who a person is, what they do, who their teachers are, there is more basis for trust in what they say.


Well, on the other hand: when certain groups of online users have the habit to gossip about people's reputation and teachers, staying anonymous is highly recommended.
It simply doesn't hurt that much, if I read lies about myself when I'm anonymous. That's why I can't take those demands to reveal my identity serious. There's no positive gain for anybody about knowing my name. Nobody will trust me more or less.

People harrass others in any case. Knowing the real name doesn't stop them - you really should know that. ;)
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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby dzogchungpa » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:26 pm

Ayu wrote:Well, on the other hand: when certain groups of online users have the habit to gossip about people's reputation and teachers, staying anonymous is highly recommended.
It simply doesn't hurt that much, if I read lies about myself when I'm anonymous. That's why I can't take those demands to reveal my identity serious. There's no positive gain for anybody about knowing my name. Nobody will trust me more or less.

People harrass others in any case. Knowing the real name doesn't stop them - you really should know that. ;)


Whatever could you be referring to, Ayu?


Image


Anyway, it's an interesting and possibly relevant fact that DJKR's new movie "Hema Hema" was apparently inspired by the way people's online personae and behavior can be affected, sometimes drastically, by anonymity.
The true condition is beyond numbers. If we think in terms of an "individual being" this means that we are limiting, and consequently everything becomes complicated. If we want to understand, then we must not limit. - Chögyal Namkhai Norbu

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby boda » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:39 pm

conebeckham wrote:I find anonymity to be inconsistent with a sense of personal responsibility for one's actions and one's speech.

Anonymous posters can be mindful of virtuous speech and conversation.
Non-anonymous people, such as myself, can also be real jackasses.


You claim to find inconsistency in anonymous posting while simultaneously pointing out inconsistency in non-anonymous posting. Perhaps you mean to say that you find a greater degree of inconsistency in anonymous posting?

In any case, we all have access to the database and a handy search function. Shall we do some investigating and put the mystery to rest? :spy:

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby Jeff H » Fri Apr 21, 2017 4:22 pm

Muni and I just had a brief PM exchange, and I think we agree that the dis-embodied internet anonymity in general, regardless of what name/label one uses, is an opportunity to let go of whatever it is we think we are or whatever we think others are. I consider that to be a useful Dharma insight, even though (or precisely because) most of us find it difficult to avoid re-establishing our concrete judgements in the new context.
We who are like children shrink from pain but love its causes. - Shantideva

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby muni » Fri Apr 21, 2017 4:36 pm

Thank you Jeff.

In that way I understand not names are the problem. Our grasping (name-form) is the problem- our clinging to names and so believing in identities ( we think to be, we want to be, what we learned to be...). These identities are the very masks which we believe are truth as a self.
Children usually know they play but we have forgotten this and think our mask (identity) is real.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0fjQiwD0BAg

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby conebeckham » Fri Apr 21, 2017 5:50 pm

boda wrote:
conebeckham wrote:I find anonymity to be inconsistent with a sense of personal responsibility for one's actions and one's speech.

Anonymous posters can be mindful of virtuous speech and conversation.
Non-anonymous people, such as myself, can also be real jackasses.


You claim to find inconsistency in anonymous posting while simultaneously pointing out inconsistency in non-anonymous posting. Perhaps you mean to say that you find a greater degree of inconsistency in anonymous posting?

In any case, we all have access to the database and a handy search function. Shall we do some investigating and put the mystery to rest? :spy:

It's not about inconsistency, it's about personal responsibility.
དམ་པའི་དོན་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ཆེ་བ་དང་།
རྟོག་གེའི་ཡུལ་མིན་བླ་མའི་བྱིན་རླབས་དང་།
སྐལ་ལྡན་ལས་འཕྲོ་ཅན་གྱིས་རྟོགས་པ་སྟེ།
དེ་ནི་ཤེས་རབ་ལ་ནི་ལོ་རྟོག་སེལ།།


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It is realized through the blessing grace of the Guru and fortunate Karmic potential.
Like this, mistaken ideas of discriminating wisdom are clarified."
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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby Anonymous X » Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:24 pm

conebeckham wrote:
boda wrote:
conebeckham wrote:I find anonymity to be inconsistent with a sense of personal responsibility for one's actions and one's speech.

Anonymous posters can be mindful of virtuous speech and conversation.
Non-anonymous people, such as myself, can also be real jackasses.


You claim to find inconsistency in anonymous posting while simultaneously pointing out inconsistency in non-anonymous posting. Perhaps you mean to say that you find a greater degree of inconsistency in anonymous posting?

In any case, we all have access to the database and a handy search function. Shall we do some investigating and put the mystery to rest? :spy:

It's not about inconsistency, it's about personal responsibility.

Which person are you referring to?

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby Anonymous X » Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:31 pm

I posted this on another thread, but I think it fits here very well. A six minute listen to a powerful dharma talk.

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby Mantrik » Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:48 pm

There is a fine distinction here between daft made-up names and those with some spiritual significance.
Using a Buddhist name by which you are commonly known as your ID on a Buddhist forum is not 'anonymous' or an attempt to avoid responsibilty.

In the case of westerners who took Buddhist names, given to them in Refuge or Ordination for example, using that name on a forum ties them directly to their vows and wholesome behaviour, whereas using the name they were given at birth may not only have personal consequences but be far less meaningful to forum members, or to themselves.

In the UK we have a simple law about the nature of your 'real name'. It is the one you choose to be known by and are commonly known by.
There is no restriction on how often you may change it, but there are restrictions on giving yourelf titles such as Lord, but not Reverend, one of my favourite prenominals. ;)


Some cultures don't share this anal fixation with names; people have several, chop and change, and nobody minds.
So please, get over your 'self' clinging. Your authenticity is only a matter of relevance here if you professto have expertise, lineage etc,when people of course have a right to challenge it. Otherwise, it is pretty unimportant and seems to have become a fairly recent fad..............it will pass. ;)

Yours, to remove a doubt

His Excellency Reverend Mantrik Blue Fire Garuda Green Yeshe Zopa, Count of the Holy Roman Empire.
Oh, the last bit is true............. :rolling:

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby PuerAzaelis » Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:55 pm

I'd use my real name but Engelbert Humperdink is kind of embarrassing.
Everybody who is incapable of learning has taken to teaching. Oscar Wilde

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:12 pm

muni wrote:Thank you Jeff.

In that way I understand not names are the problem. Our grasping (name-form) is the problem- our clinging to names and so believing in identities ( we think to be, we want to be, what we learned to be...). These identities are the very masks which we believe are truth as a self.
Children usually know they play but we have forgotten this and think our mask (identity) is real.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0fjQiwD0BAg



This is one of the most common, silly uses of a Buddhist trope IMO. "It's ok to [blank] because it's all emptiness anyway". This is really sophomoric, and not an argument worthy of serious consideration. We all know identities are relative, not news to anyone. The question is whether actively hiding your relative identity creates certain behavior patterns, in my experience the answer is definitely "yes", at least with a good percentage of people. I think it's quite necessary for some people to have that anonymity, however there is no question in my mind that a good number of people have it -purely- so that they can say what they want, and not have to own what they say.

On the names bit:

There are a number of people I know here who use aliases but don't really actively hide their identity at all, whereas there are others who are purposely vague, create multiple accounts, etc..IMO this unquestionably drives down the level of conversation here. It's ugly, but unavoidable I'm afraid. Even I have been subject to a bit of online harassment due to modding here, so I get why some people want to avoid disclosing too much.
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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby Mantrik » Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:36 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:There are a number of people I know here who use aliases but don't really actively hide their identity at all, whereas there are others who are purposely vague, create multiple accounts, etc..IMO this unquestionably drives down the level of conversation here. It's ugly, but unavoidable I'm afraid. Even I have been subject to a bit of online harassment due to modding here, so I get why some people want to avoid disclosing too much.


Of course, there could be a policy whereby anonymity was only granted to people who needed it, and the frivolous are refused. But just how many staff would you need to cope with all the vetting of existing and new members? My guess is that for the few nutjobs and double-nick numpties you would spend many many hours checking out harmless folk.

Far better to let people choose an acceptable forum ID, just as they can choose a name in 'real life'.

Instead, keep the focus on behaviour, and in the light of recent remarks maybe tweak that a little to focus on when people falsely claim attainments, teachers or lineages - maybe that should be a banning offence.

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby smcj » Fri Apr 21, 2017 9:19 pm

For my part I've let Cone know who I am. I felt ok about doing so because we are of the same school, have some of the same teachers and teachings, and know some people in common. Plus I respect his opinions. We even met once for 3 or 4 seconds at an event.

But that was all specifically precipitated by my volunteering for work on an HHK (O.T.) visit. DW happened to have provided the line of communication. It wasn't about disclosing my identity at all.
My posts are for entertainment purposes only. Please don't take anything I say seriously unless you confirm it with a traditional teacher first.

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby muni » Fri Apr 21, 2017 9:42 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
muni wrote:Thank you Jeff.

In that way I understand not names are the problem. Our grasping (name-form) is the problem- our clinging to names and so believing in identities ( we think to be, we want to be, what we learned to be...). These identities are the very masks which we believe are truth as a self.
Children usually know they play but we have forgotten this and think our mask (identity) is real.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0fjQiwD0BAg



This is one of the most common, silly uses of a Buddhist trope IMO. "It's ok to [blank] because it's all emptiness anyway". This is really sophomoric, and not an argument worthy of serious consideration. We all know identities are relative, not news to anyone. The question is whether actively hiding your relative identity creates certain behavior patterns, in my experience the answer is definitely "yes", at least with a good percentage of people. I think it's quite necessary for some people to have that anonymity, however there is no question in my mind that a good number of people have it -purely- so that they can say what they want, and not have to own what they say.

On the names bit:

There are a number of people I know here who use aliases but don't really actively hide their identity at all, whereas there are others who are purposely vague, create multiple accounts, etc..IMO this unquestionably drives down the level of conversation here. It's ugly, but unavoidable I'm afraid. Even I have been subject to a bit of online harassment due to modding here, so I get why some people want to avoid disclosing too much.


That would be clinging to emptiness and would be more than silly.

Tilopa: "You are not bound by appearances (phenomena), but by your clinging to them, so cut through that clinging", Naropa.
Actually relative is not some existence apart from the absolute. There is no independent existence at all.
Last edited by muni on Fri Apr 21, 2017 9:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Fri Apr 21, 2017 9:56 pm

muni wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:
muni wrote:Thank you Jeff.

In that way I understand not names are the problem. Our grasping (name-form) is the problem- our clinging to names and so believing in identities ( we think to be, we want to be, what we learned to be...). These identities are the very masks which we believe are truth as a self.
Children usually know they play but we have forgotten this and think our mask (identity) is real.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0fjQiwD0BAg



This is one of the most common, silly uses of a Buddhist trope IMO. "It's ok to [blank] because it's all emptiness anyway". This is really sophomoric, and not an argument worthy of serious consideration. We all know identities are relative, not news to anyone. The question is whether actively hiding your relative identity creates certain behavior patterns, in my experience the answer is definitely "yes", at least with a good percentage of people. I think it's quite necessary for some people to have that anonymity, however there is no question in my mind that a good number of people have it -purely- so that they can say what they want, and not have to own what they say.

On the names bit:

There are a number of people I know here who use aliases but don't really actively hide their identity at all, whereas there are others who are purposely vague, create multiple accounts, etc..IMO this unquestionably drives down the level of conversation here. It's ugly, but unavoidable I'm afraid. Even I have been subject to a bit of online harassment due to modding here, so I get why some people want to avoid disclosing too much.


That would be clinging to emptiness and would be more than silly.

Tilopa: "You are not bound by appearances (phenomena), but by your clinging to them, so cut through that clinging", Naropa.
Actually relative is not some existence apart from the absolute. There is no independent existence at all.


This is actually just a thread about the relative merits and demerits of anonymity on this (or other forums). I don't think constant appeals to authority and posting of quotes is nearly as useful as actual lived experience, and statements arising from those experiences. This is a simple conversation, no need for religious pretense in any direction.
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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Fri Apr 21, 2017 9:59 pm

Mantrik wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:There are a number of people I know here who use aliases but don't really actively hide their identity at all, whereas there are others who are purposely vague, create multiple accounts, etc..IMO this unquestionably drives down the level of conversation here. It's ugly, but unavoidable I'm afraid. Even I have been subject to a bit of online harassment due to modding here, so I get why some people want to avoid disclosing too much.


Of course, there could be a policy whereby anonymity was only granted to people who needed it, and the frivolous are refused. But just how many staff would you need to cope with all the vetting of existing and new members? My guess is that for the few nutjobs and double-nick numpties you would spend many many hours checking out harmless folk.

Far better to let people choose an acceptable forum ID, just as they can choose a name in 'real life'.


Yeah, there's really no way around it, like I said. Still, far and away the best forum I've ever been on was one where a real name and description of oneself was a requirement, it just isn't possible, and probably not desirable with a forum like this.

Instead, keep the focus on behaviour, and in the light of recent remarks maybe tweak that a little to focus on when people falsely claim attainments, teachers or lineages - maybe that should be a banning offence.


It happens so often that we'd have our hands full.
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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby muni » Fri Apr 21, 2017 10:23 pm

This is actually just a thread about the relative merits and demerits of anonymity on this (or other forums). I don't think constant appeals to authority and posting of quotes is nearly as useful as actual lived experience, and statements arising from those experiences. This is a simple conversation, no need for religious pretense in any direction.


The notion that holding on identity keeps us in samsara I would not call a religious pretense.
I have no any problem how fellows want to appear (name). However the internet is a new way to be swept by afflictions, even a new way of crime (cyber). Perhaps some people did already investigations regarding this, whether these actions are more by anonymous or not? I think it is possible.

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby boda » Fri Apr 21, 2017 10:27 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:There are a number of people I know here who use aliases but don't really actively hide their identity at all, whereas there are others who are purposely vague, create multiple accounts, etc..IMO this unquestionably drives down the level of conversation here. It's ugly, but unavoidable I'm afraid. Even I have been subject to a bit of online harassment due to modding here, so I get why some people want to avoid disclosing too much.

Just out of curiosity, is Johnny Dangerous your name?

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Re: Anonymity on Buddhist forums

Postby Jeff H » Fri Apr 21, 2017 10:33 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
muni wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:

This is one of the most common, silly uses of a Buddhist trope IMO. "It's ok to [blank] because it's all emptiness anyway". This is really sophomoric, and not an argument worthy of serious consideration. We all know identities are relative, not news to anyone. The question is whether actively hiding your relative identity creates certain behavior patterns, in my experience the answer is definitely "yes", at least with a good percentage of people. I think it's quite necessary for some people to have that anonymity, however there is no question in my mind that a good number of people have it -purely- so that they can say what they want, and not have to own what they say.

On the names bit:

There are a number of people I know here who use aliases but don't really actively hide their identity at all, whereas there are others who are purposely vague, create multiple accounts, etc..IMO this unquestionably drives down the level of conversation here. It's ugly, but unavoidable I'm afraid. Even I have been subject to a bit of online harassment due to modding here, so I get why some people want to avoid disclosing too much.


That would be clinging to emptiness and would be more than silly.

Tilopa: "You are not bound by appearances (phenomena), but by your clinging to them, so cut through that clinging", Naropa.
Actually relative is not some existence apart from the absolute. There is no independent existence at all.


This is actually just a thread about the relative merits and demerits of anonymity on this (or other forums). I don't think constant appeals to authority and posting of quotes is nearly as useful as actual lived experience, and statements arising from those experiences. This is a simple conversation, no need for religious pretense in any direction.


I believe the point being made is that anonymity is a non-issue because the relevant factors are based on other things. I have had the exact opposite experience from you, JD, in which a closed group of class participants who necessarily had to use their real names resulted in the least effective forum I've been on. DW is a very good forum and I don't think banning anonymity would make it even slightly better.

Neither do I consider the simplest, most basic truths of Buddhism to be "tropes". But I do think it borders on irresponsible to denigrate someone’s legitimate opinion as “sophomoric” just because you disagree with it. The potential irresponsibility, IMO, arises based on the fact that you are a high profile and I’d say highly respected poster on DW, in addition to being a mod.

The point I think Muni is making, and I know I am, is that an online community replicates all the fundamental identity delusions that we myopically perpetrate in society. We all have our own ideas of who’s who here, we see all the conflicts and alliances, and we construct the same kinds of likes, dislikes, and neutralities around those perceptions – just as we do in society. The anonymity arises from the disembodiment, like a Halloween mask, not from the name we use.

The various names are all just sorting devices to help us assign our deluded constructions. Does it really make any difference if my name actually is “Jeff” or my initial “H”? Are you really the “Johnny Dangerous” whose online bio says, “When unabashed sexuality and devious wit billows throughout the universe, it must be coming from the mouthy mastermind of raunchy rapper, Johnny Dangerous”?

The name is the least consequential piece, IMO. I find that even people’s avatars have more to do with my judgments about DW participants than the names. But the most significant factor is what people say. What ideas they express, how they express them, who and how they attack, who and how they defend – these are the things that define the various personas on DW.

And IMHO, that is exactly what this thread is about. (Which is not necessarily to say I’m not being sophomoric. :smile: )
We who are like children shrink from pain but love its causes. - Shantideva


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