Article by Upendranath Dasa
Saragrahi.Org’s Specific Vision About Free Speech And Civility
An author should not accept responsibility for others’ feelings. An author should accept responsibility for his own feelings. And an author should expect that on this site, others will do likewise
An author should not accept responsibility for others’ feelings. An author should accept responsibility for his own feelings. And an author should expect that on this site, others will do likewise, because that is such a rudimentary lesson of the Bhagavad-gita, rather than the societal idea of making others responsible for your feelings, which is a way to gag people from being honest with each other. And if an author’s style is objectionable to anyone, or people find there is not enough content in what the author offers, then they are free to skip over these efforts. Anyone is free to skip over others that they find hollow, or their style gets up their nose. That is not to say that they would never make a suggestion about someone’s style, but to talk incessantly about it, on the forum, and to float simplistic “philosophy” to justify it, well, that is just not a good stance for anyone. Mostly everyone believes in freedom of speech. But on this site, we want to see intelligent speech. Why not? This is “Saragrahi” after all.
In regards to “the newcomers”, which is of a big concern for may Vaisnava organizations, and thus they put a lot of significances on them. Previously, this site was not oriented for the newcomers. Time, place, and circumstance, means that there has to be an adjustment in this regard. This site will also provide material, essays, treatises, papers, and dialog, that will educate a newcomer to the REAL Kåñëa-consciousness, and to the REAL Mission that Srila Prabhupada desired. This is not a recruitment site. Although newcomers are welcomed to come and listen and participate if they can, this is not the purpose of this site or its concern. This site is all about old-timers developing their capacity to think clearly and so forth, penetrating the philosophy together? Remember, the Sanskrit word for philosophy is darshana, meaning “to see.” So what about that concern? Why must everything be about recruiting, while old timers are “stagnating?” What about “preaching among themselves”? Saragrahi.org is the ideal site for that.
Again, time, place and circumstance, has after 45 years, made it mandatory that we build a strong class of madhyamas, because they will be the one who provide ‘siksa”, and be the “sika-gurus”, that komalas will need, so they can be raised to the madhyama platform. In this case, facilitating advanced madhyamas to elevate themselves to the uttama platform and thus be eligible to be diksa-gurus. It would be kind of inconsiderate, to make advancement as a madhyama, and leave the komalas behind. Hey! Why not string them along, and pull them up to the madhyama platform, and save them from their komala status.
ISKCON is just one bunch of kanistha-adhikaris, stuck in the komala-place. They have fallen into the ISKCON DECEPTION; someone, or something, needs to save them. Saragrahi.org will provide for this facility too. If you someone who fits this shoe, so to speak, then read the Featured Presentation A Treatise “Moving-Forward”, it has been written especially for you; it will free you from the ISKCON DECEPTION, and it will awaken you to understand exactly what Srila Prabhupada’s Mission was supposed to be like.
Free speech is that anyone can say what he or she thinks, and everyone else is free to read it or not.
- There may be posts, by certain persons, that someone else will simply not read at all.
- There may be posts by, certain persons that someone else will simply just scan.
- And there may be posts, by certain persons that someone else will never fail to read.
So this site’s approach is that all, are free to speak, and everyone else is also free to decide whom they tune in to, or pass over. That is free speech.
Not the idea that we have to speak like this, and like that because of “them,” “feelings,” and newcomers, and because when Prabhupada spoke frankly, it was because he was with high-ranking people who were “proud.”
A site called Saragrahi should be somewhat intimidating, just by the nature of the enterprise. Yes, a wide variety is welcomed and very nice, if they have something intelligent to say. Saragrahi.org is not a safe place for stupidity. Those who wish to contribute varieties of verbal vomit, should be made to feel unwelcome. The pseudo-intelligent, (a person who wants to be thought of as having a lot of intelligence and knowledge, but who is not really intelligent or knowledgeable), should not be encouraged, although they are also free to post; and indeed they will. And the downright asinine, are also free to post, and indeed there will be some of them too. And hopefully, if they listen, they will get a grip, and control the urge to speak. But Saragrahi.org, will not encourage them, in the name of variety, or in the name of civility.
If someone posts foolish ideas, then s/he should expect them to get hashed, trashed, and mashed. And if s/he has a true aptitude for being a saragrahi, s/he will be appreciative and stick around, and learn how to hold their ground, with logic and reason. So anyone may speak, and then stand or fall in the public, and if s/he is silly or stupid, and persists, then they may get an invitation to go to another part of town, and that is good for them, and for this site as well.
In all cases, we should expect that our efforts would be put under rational critical scrutiny, because this is what madhyamas or Saragrahis do, facing life, with an alert analytical eye. Not taking a 6 for a 9. Blue for yellow. Up for down. Or “doo-doo” for halava. It is their default way of functioning, you see. But they do so against the backdrop of reason and philosophy, not social convention, the herd’s point of view, and the various sentiments we have taken on board, in the name of philosophy, and human decency, and worrying about “feeling” more than about whether people make good sense.