Having read some exchanges on this board recently, I feel to share some of my thoughts in a general way.
I have no problem with people fighting. Fighting can be quite necessary. Some people do learn from the aggression at times or from getting taken down in a fight.
However, if reasoning or sharing does not eventually lead to an improvement in conduct then the exercise just becomes more of a worthless distraction. Expanding education is supposed to improve character and, by extension, move us to worthwhile actions and progressively improve on them. HOW we engage whatever activities we choose to engage will be a testimony to how really educated we are. Academic degrees and achievements do not automatically mean one is educated in my view. People can be trained to remember much and still not be educated.
I have sent people who wanted my take on development and Rastafari to this board. As I told them, I prefer that they assess my views alongside the views of others, especially others who disagree with me or are just (often automatically) hostile to my position.
A few years ago, I decided that since the people who contacted me had already ‘gotten it’ to the measure that I was willing to share, it was better that I backed off and allow others to carry on with their agendas. For the most part, I have satisfied my own agenda. The site still remains a part of our general social work and is mostly financed and scripted by Aisha (an African woman), and some other site members have also financially contributed to the site.
I know that everyone takes what they learn with them. We can be better examples or we can be hypocrites. People can learn from both.
The revolution that I am about is first a personal journey. Becoming aware of the wider social ills should be about improving ourselves. While improving oneself, one automatically shares.
Focusing on helping others or changing society can delude as often we focus on the ills out there and fail to see our own shortcomings.
Physical work is an important aspect of learning; reasoning without doing work gives understanding and not knowledge. People can spin for eons with understanding and just a little knowledge. However, those who engage in activities, especially if they are in our best interest, get deeper insights and knowledge.
In my view, many are not about increasing awareness and improving conduct. The size of people’s earthbound personalities can be a real problem for them. Much discord is about this clashing of ‘egos’. Egos are quite fragile, and because of this, some people act out childishly when challenged and others just feign ignorance or incoherence to distract from meaningful reasoning.
From the onset, many objected to the fact that we (the administrators of this site) do not adhere to popular ideas of Rastafari and they are quite entitled to their position. However, some went further and tried to disrupt the site. One poster erroneously assumed that the site was somehow owned by someone else and he tried to make a deal for the domain name.
Even while Ras Forever was alive, some were emailing him to stop the discussions on racism, White Rastafarians and other contentious topics. Ras Forever used to tell me that many of the Rastafarians on the site were hardened but that our insights should be shared. I understood him clearly and I reasoned my interpretation of Rastafari alongside all the social issues I felt should be addressed.
I really have no problem with the different schools of thought on Rastafari as I find there is a logical reason for their development. With available information many things can be interpreted differently and in ways that allow for improved understanding and development. Resisting a different interpretation is one thing, but the persistent detractors are the 'funny’ ones. Imagine spending years on this site just to distract.
If some are not interested in our views, or are against us, then why just hang around trying to be the poison pill (rhetorical question)? It appears like their main resistance to the system is centered on fighting against this site. They constantly try to distort our views in order to distract others from getting it. On the up side, we have actually found them to be quite useful to our objectives and have factored them in as long as they were not flouting the rules. It meant that if people had to consider our views properly they had to make the extra effort to ‘get it’ while wading through the distractions, the distortions and the hostility. If they were successful in grasping something of importance from that exercise, then they would be better in the long run for having made that extra effort.
Many are still to grasp the depth of racism that still exists in societies (especially as even more illusions are being spun with Obama as the US president). People still have to deal with the illusion of White Supremacy; the realities of the impact of COLORISM and gender biases, imperialism - mass murder based on greed and in the name of religion and many other ills. We have to understand the many ways we contribute to perpetuating social ills.
There are valid reasons for some clashes on this board and it’s quite acceptable. The downside is there are observers who may not even understand why some people are fighting. They may see regular posters hurl some insults at each other and when they join the board they quickly adopt a rude and obnoxious conduct. They could erroneously believe that insults are the tone of exchanges expected of them here or that they are exercising some revolutionary freedom of speech.
So in closing: fight if you will, stop when you feel and remember the observers and yourselves.
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