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.
We who are like children shrink from pain but love its causes. - Shantideva