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⫸STICKY⫷ Philosophy and Spirituality Forum Guidelines -- Please read before posting.

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Bluelight Crew
Aug 20, 2003
Welcome to Bluelight.ru's Philosophy and Spirituality Forum (P&S). This is a forum dedicated to the discussion of ideas about the Human Condition, under the premise that these sorts of ideas have always been a common motivation for, and result of, psychoactive drug use.

All posters in this forum agree to abide by the terms of the Bluelight User Agreement (BLUA). In addition, in the spirit of fostering fruitful discussion and a warm and welcoming atmosphere for all, we moderators will be enforcing the following P&S-specific rules. These rules were made entirely on practical grounds. That is, the moderators of P&S, based on several years of observation, have found the forum to be a much more palatable place for all when these guidelines are followed, than when they are not.

1. No ad hominem attacks. The subject matter discussed here in P&S is often controversial, and deals with subjects that many people have strong feelings about. You are free to express your opinion on any topic we cover here, even if that opinion is one of complete disagreement with what another poster has said. But you are not free to express your beef with another poster's very presence or right to post. If you feel another poster has been rude to you, use the Report Post function, PM him/her, or PM a moderator to ask for help in mediating the dispute. Posts containing ad hominem attacks will be unapproved. Threads that continue to generate less-than-civil discussion will be closed. Posters who persist in making ad hominem attacks against other users will receive first a warning, then an infraction.

2. No preaching or plagiarism. Regardless of the topic, lengthy and/or repetitive posts consisting of little more than quoted text from outside sources lower the signal-to-noise ratio in P&S. People don't read these posts, and why should they? They're not communicative, and are essentially spam. We here at P&S have nothing against people sharing interesting writings they've found. But please use a link, an abbreviated abstract, or a few select pithy quotes, followed by your own comments and thoughts. Cite your source. Posts that fail to follow this guideline will be unapproved. Any post which the moderators have good reason to believe is a complete and deliberate plagiarism of someone else's online writing will receive an infraction for spamming, as by the BLUA.

3. No incoherent posts. We understand that the subject matter discussed in P&S can sometimes be highly abstract and hard to put into words. We also accept that many people's thoughts here come to them during states of altered consciousness. English is not everyone's first language here, and even native English speakers vary in their ability to eloquently express a heady idea. However, if a sober moderator can make no sense of a post at all, he reserves the right to close or unapprove it.

4. All beliefs will be treated with equal respect. Diversity of belief -- religious, spiritual, philosophical, political, artistic, and social -- is the lifeblood of P&S. Humanity is nowhere near a consensus on many of the issues discussed here, and in the end, nobody has all the answers. Be forewarned before posting here that not everyone necessarily agrees with your point of view, nor should they be expected to, no matter how indisputable you find it to be. On the other hand, posters have the right to refuse being taken to task for their stated points of view, if they so choose. Keep in mind that some people post here seeking comfort, inspiration, and the company of like minds, rather than debate. If you would like to not be taken to task, just politely state that you are not looking to debate, and leave it at that. Less-than-polite requests to back off from debate will be dealt with the same way as ad hominem attacks, above. Posters who persist in attacking the viewpoints of others who have clearly and politely stated no desire for debate, will receive a warning, then an infraction.

5. No trolling. This is a serious discussion forum, where participants can trust that posters mean exactly what they say, and are motivated by a sincere desire to explore and share ideas. Posts clearly made with the intention of provoking an inflammatory response from other posters, or some other ulterior motive besides sincere discussion, will receive a warning, and if trolling continues, an infraction.

6. The moderators reserve the right to unapprove, merge, or move to another forum, any posts we deem off-topic. We recognize that different people have different interpretations of what falls under the scope of philosophy or spirituality, and that there is some degree of overlap with the topics covered by other forums. But all posts must be tangentially related to something philosophical or spiritual. For example, discussions of the philosophy of politics will be allowed to stay, but discussions of current political happenings will be sent to the Current Events and Politics forum. Discussions of the philosophy of mind will be allowed to stay, but threads about nothing but neuroscience will be moved to the Science and Technology forum.

7. No encouraging irresponsible drug behaviour. Although P&S is not a drug forum (and indeed, we discourage drug-talk if it doesn't directly relate to our subject matter), always remember that it is still part of Bluelight, which is primarily a Harm Reduction message-board. The Harm Reduction rule still stands: you are not to encourage irresponsible or otherwise destructive drug-related behaviour.

8. Thread opening posts (OP) must contain discussion starter points written by the creator of the thread in addition to any links they post. These must all be contained in the first post. If an OP contains a link to a video or other content off-site content, the OP must write their own summary or synopsis as well as points for starting a conversation in P&S. In other words, any reader should be able to respond to the OP without having to watch the video or visit external links. The OP's discussion starter should speak for itself. An OP that does not meet these guidelines will be subject to closure and the Bluelighter who started the thread may receive disciplinary action.

Welcome, namaste, and many blessings upon your inner journey, from all of us here at P&S.

Published March 21, 2010. Written by MyDoorsAreOpen, approved by Jamshyd, Damien, and TheLoveBandit.

Amended Apr. 1 2018 by Foreigner - added Rule #7.


Addendum: Tips for making good threads/posts:

- Try to think in terms of how others will perceive your post. Make it clear whether you're looking to debate or not, or you might not get the kinds of responses you were expecting. This may sound obvious, but many threads fail simply because this gets looked over.

- Narrow your scope. Try to avoid "universals" like the dreaded "Does God Exist?". Not only are these discussions bound to appear in one form or another in more well-defined threads where they actually have a purpose, but also can be found in already-existing threads by searching for them. In other words, if it's a big question, it probably already has a big thread, so UTFSE.

- Try not to go off on tangents, but it is understandable that these can happen anyway.

- Posting a news article is in and of itself permissible. But be advised that this should have something actually relevant to this forum's content as there are two other great forums on BL that deal with the news. And even then, you are probably going to have to post an idea that you have about such article. Otherwise, threads like these tend to either fizzle away or degenerate into senseless rabble that usually ends up being closed.

- While you're not expected to write university-style essays, try to give credit where credit is due. It is actually part of the rules to do so. This also goes to being respectful of others and not saying exactly what they said pretending it is your own.*

- Showing overt political bias/agenda, particularly when starting threads, is bound to backfire one way or another. If you are unable to bottle up your political fervour regarding a certain issue, then you always have the option of posting in the Current Events and Politics forum or the BL Blog feature. Also don't forget that the rules above (No preaching, being respectful...etc) mean that posting politically-negative threads may very well end up closed, warned, and/or infracted, so save your time and ours and just don't do it.

- Finally, with the BLUA (you read that when you signed up, right? ;)), the P&S rules, and these hints, we hope to foster an atmosphere of understanding. It would be nice if we can try to discuss things to understand each other's points of view rather than try and push our ideas down others' throats. If you plan to "debate for sport", ie. argue for the sake of argument, think of where exactly this is going before you do.

* Covered in the rules, yes, and bolded even! yet cannot be stated enough because people tend to miss it every time!

Published April 27th by Jamshyd, approved by MyDoorsAreOpen, Fizzle, and Damien.
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