From SaveTheWorld - a project of The Partnership Machine, Inc. (Sponsor: Family Music Center)
- 1 YOUR Opportunity Here
- 2 Logical requirements for Consensus
- 3 Vision, stated in "sound bite" phrases
- 4 Links to Bible Studies about a Discussion & Action Forum
- 5 Boring stuff for administrators
YOUR Opportunity Here
I, Dave Leach, created this website as part of my prayer for Bible discussions. I am not particular about how we meet: in person (at our office at 4110 SW 9th, Des Moines IA 50315), by phone (515-244-3711), by email (BibleDiscussions@Saltshaker.US), or by Zoom. (Contact me so I can give you login numbers.)
Clicking Forum, above or here, takes you to articles posted on this site, where you can not only leave a "comment" afterwards, but also at the point in the article that interests you. Begin! shows you how to Request Account, how to use wiki code from the simple to the complicated, and FAQ answer, among other things, why anonymous posting is only allowed when posting with your real name would actually put you in physical danger.
What this forum lets you accomplish
Here, you can help assemble wisdom that is available to others. Wisdom requires more than a single perspective: it requires interaction with any competing views. That "freedom of speech", which continually tests its assumptions through its search for any contrary evidence, is the essence of what has made America strong and successful. It is an application of The Scientific Method, with its "rigorous skeptism" and "tests" which are searches for any conceivable evidence that might refute its "hypotheses". It actually guarantees success in whatever purposes a group can agree on, according to the Bible.
Proverbs 15:22 Without counsel purposes are disappointed: but in the multitude of counsellors they are established.
Matthew 18:19 Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.
This forum lets you interact with others to develop consensus about facts, positions, solutions and strategies relating to public issues. And then act together using these strategies in order to implement these solutions - going beyond talk all the way to results. To "turn the world right side up", as Acts 17:6 indirectly puts it. Where God is not censored, but personal attacks are.
Where people can reason through disagreements in their way
Here, you can reason through disagreements that stand like mountains of evil in your way of helping each other.
Matthew 21:21 Jesus answered and said unto them, Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done. 22 And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.
First, people have to agree what IS evil. Second, people have to agree how best to overcome evil - what social, political, or legal strategies to pursue together. Agreement is not necessary, of course, to merely listen to someone else talk about evil, or watch someone else stand against evil, or even to give money to others to oppose evil. But to actually participate in pulling down one of those "mountains", for example through coordinated personal communication with lawmakers, disagreement about the best way to reach goals, not to mention disagreement about goals themselves, is quite an obstacle.
An open, fair, organized forum is necessary even for any group because no group of humans is so united that they already agree on every important thing. Not even the most united groups: husbands and wives. Much less, members of the same church, or the same political party.
On the other hand such a forum is possible even with the most diverse groups. Even Republican and Democrat Congressmen are able to identify SOME legislation that they can both support. Even Christians and Atheists are able to play music together.
Where mutual action is the goal, beginning with identifying projects already agreed upon
Our goal: not only to identify points of agreement amid a sea of intractable differences but to reason through even the most obstinate differences, inching towards greater consensus, respectfully and through love. What other motivation is there for pulling down "mountains" of evil, than love for others still oppressed by those evils? How ironic to love distant strangers that much, but not those you are interacting with to help them! So love for each other - development of strong personal working relationships - is our ally against evil.
Where old comfortable customs can't censor new better solutions
New solutions generally challenge old comfortable familiar customs. "Continuing to do things the same way, while expecting a better result, is the definition of 'insanity'", the saying goes.
Not that we should be so skeptical of everything, even of established practices proven effective, that we take no action, like the Hindu teaching that nothing is "true" but rather everything is "illusion", so purpose-driven action is undesirable; we should become free of "desire" - of purpose (except for the desire to have no desires).
Science progresses by acting energetically on the best available evidence, while ever alert to better evidence. So should any Christian proceed: never with "all the answers", but with enough of them to guide heroic action.
If the degree of evil in the world is acceptable to us, or if our rate of progress against evil is acceptable to us, then we don't need to challenge our comfortable habits. But what we are already doing isn't bringing us the results we want, we need to be on the lookout for better methods. What other forum or activist organization has the time to investigate new ideas submitted by anyone, not just submitted by the Experts they hire? Well, maybe if the idea can be crammed into a paragraph. But most evil is too complicated for an effective solution to squeeze into a paragraph or even a page. Where can a problem solver go where his solution will be investigated and acted upon once approved?
If there is a better format, someone tell us and we may shut this down. There are more popular forums! But much depends on popularizing this much interaction across our land. (This format is compared with others at FAQ#What_does_this_forum_do_that_others_don't?).
Logical requirements for Consensus
The Spirit of Consensus
Consensus is only possible between people willing to reason with each other - even when they disagree - respectfully at the least, if not in love. But Truth is only possible when bad reasoning - in ourselves as well as in others - is not respected or "tolerated", but patiently, graciously corrected. See [Rules#What_you_can't_do]
Consensus is only possible between people free to articulate their personal opinions and their reasoning, and to explain what most persuaded them - whatever it was - even when that turns out to be the Bible. Solutions are only possible when people can offer original ideas - because America NEEDS better solutions than have already been published!
Consensus requires lots of patience, lots of love, and lots of time. It takes lots of time to scrutinize new ideas, and to research novel claims. So much time, in fact, that it might require giving up as much as a whole TV show a week.
Logical Formatting Tools for Consensus (feel free to propose improvements)
How you can do it. The wiki software here is what Wikipedia uses. It allows people to not just comment after someone else's article, but to also edit someone else's article. The rules here invite you to edit, comment, debate, vote, and leave your name with links to more of your own information, in the very part of an article where it is relevant. You can submit your own original evidence or reasoning (which is prohibited at Wikipedia; you can only report, there, the statements or positions of some "mainstream" source).
When the information you want to add is unreasonably long, or would alter the direction of the article enough to render its title incomplete if not misleading, you can add a summary of your information with a link to all of it which you can post in a separate article on this site. If you want to post your information where others can't change it, you can post it on your own website and link here, or you can become a blogger on our sister blog, [www.Talk2me.Saltshaker.US www.Talk2me.Saltshaker.US]. Everyone is welcome to become a blogger there who will stay on a subject undistracted by spam, ads, porn, dirty words, etc. See Rules.
If your comment is like most comments after published articles, which very seldom address specific points in the article, you can leave it on the associated "talk" page where the rules about how to post are simpler.
The Forum is a list of articles you can add to, correct, vote for, or just read. There are also suggested options how you can contribute in this format, and how to work with wiki software. Don't fear the funny code characters. They are your slaves.
Rules explain the very little that you can't do. Basically: stay on the subject. No spam, ads, profanity, or personal attacks. What you can do: You can disagree. You can reason. You can quote God to give weight to your point. You can disagree with God and even God will reason with you if you will sincerely reason, Isaiah 1:18, so we Christians, not being better than God, will also; although gratuitous refusal to consider evidence will not make you persuasive. The mood of the rules is to make you persuasive and to encourage respect - not for error, but for each other, we all being victims of error, Galatians 6:1 - and for reason and intelligence, evidence and reality.
Tips are suggestions how to back up what you say in order to be persuasive, wherever you are trying to reason with someone who disagrees with you, and Scriptures that back up those suggestions.
FAQ explains why it is important that you register with your real name before you can post. It helps control spam, eliminates "trolls", and helps keep our efforts to reason with each other respectful so they can be productive. By the same principle that defendants in court can better defend themselves when they can "face" their accusers - know who they are, and be able to question them - discussion is more productive when people know who they are talking to.
Talk:Main Page is where you can propose changes to this page, the Main Page. This page is "protected" so that not everybody can change it, unlike almost every other page and article. Please "request an account" (upper right of the screen) so you can contribute. (Automatic account creation had to be disabled after thousands of spammers shut down this website with filthy, barely articulate posts. The process now requires not only that you contribute using your real name, but that the website administrator has your real working email address.)
Vision, stated in "sound bite" phrases
A “Partnership Machine”. A “multitude of counsellors”, through which, God promises in Proverbs 15:22, goals that are agreed upon are reached.
A “Think Tank” which establishes facts with enough authority to bring “Political Reality” closer to reality – to help Truth become “politically realistic” again. A forum for healing national division.
A forum where the purpose of debate is not sport but results - to "turn the world right side up". Acts 17:6. Where people reason with each other even when they disagree - without "tolerating" nonsense - where wise people will love you for intelligently correcting them, Proverbs 9:8.
Where information is judged, not people. Where ideas can't survive just by being "tolerated"; they have to be proved true. Where unpopular truths have a better chance than popular nonsense. Where everyone may appeal to the highest principles they know in support of their positions - even Christians.
Links to Bible Studies about a Discussion & Action Forum
The Partnership Machine profile posted at Guidestar.org, a clearing house for information about nonprofit corporations. This website is a project of The Partnership Machine.
The Last Five Reformation Theses? This was posted October 31, 2017, the 400th anniversary of the posting by Martin Luther of his 95 theses on his church door. "Martin Luther didn’t finish his list of theses, since he only listed 95, and everyone knows when you get that close to 100 you need to come up with 5 more before your list will be considered complete. It would seem Luther left his list unfinished in order to invite others to help finish it. So here are 5 more:"