FYM can't change the world, but FYM can change the world in me - U2 Feedback

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Old 06-23-2006, 03:51 PM   #1
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FYM can't change the world, but FYM can change the world in me

so ... there must be a reason why most of us keep coming back for use and abuse, vindication and vitriol, intellectual comradery and combat.

i think most of us who post regularly come to be challenged -- and often this challenging forces us to examine our beliefs and personal totems, and many times i would imagine that being forced to defend yourself causes you to dig deeper and think through the logic of what we believe, ultimately strengthening and clarifying these beliefs.

but now always. often, minds and hearts are changed, eyes are opened, stereotypes are thwarted (or perhaps reconfirmed), and the world looks just a little bit different when we log out for the day.

so ... anyone want to share a story? something specific? something vague? point out a particular thread? thank an individual poster?

i'm hoping good feelings come form this ... and i'll start:

to the sincere, devout Christians -- liberal, conservative, and somewhere-in-between -- of FYM (and there are at least half a dozen of you) i've found a surprising amount of logic and intellectual rigor in the various beliefs they hold. my assumptions about the devout was that they had chosen not to think critically, not to question their received knowledge, and to wrap the comforting blanket of unchallenged certainty around them in the face of a rapidly changing world. while i think that stereotype is true to some extent, i think that in FYM, that is the exception rather than the rule.

while i can't say i agree, i can understand where certain beliefs are coming from and the sometimes rather sound logic behind it.
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Old 06-23-2006, 04:04 PM   #2
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Actually Irvine, YOUR posts have enlightened me more than others. I wouldn't say you have changed my mind on any issue, as I am a bit stubborn, but you have helped soften my heart.


I find forum discussions difficult to follow at times, because they jump all over the place pretty quickly. What makes it even more difficult is when someone jumps in at page 7 without reading the first 6 pages of discussion

Nonetheless, it is still worth it.

Thanks Irvine.
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Old 06-23-2006, 04:13 PM   #3
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I've done a 180 (for the better, I think) on all issues relating to homosexuality I think it's because I only have one close friend that's gay and I grew up in a very conservative community, so I was never exposed to the reality of restricting people's rights and discriminating against them and trying to make them feel ashamed (maybe the worst thing of all) simply because of how they were born and who they choose to have relationships with.

As much as I've changed in that regard, FYM discussions have also strengthened my previous beliefs in other areas. I think that's good too.

As for thanking individual posters, I guess I should point out that the posts I most appreciate usually come from people I don't often agree with: BVS, Angela Harlem, indra, and anitram, to name a few. Also props to Irvine and melon for giving me a different perspective (see first paragraph).
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Old 06-23-2006, 04:35 PM   #4
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Re: FYM can't change the world, but FYM can change the world in me

Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511
so ... there must be a reason why most of us keep coming back for use and abuse, vindication and vitriol, intellectual comradery and combat.

i think most of us who post regularly come to be challenged -- and often this challenging forces us to examine our beliefs and personal totems, and many times i would imagine that being forced to defend yourself causes you to dig deeper and think through the logic of what we believe, ultimately strengthening and clarifying these beliefs.
And then some of us are just plain addicts.

Seriously though, you've certainly captured why I come on Interference. I've always enjoyed debate (my wife does NOT, so that's not something we do at home). I like to be challenged and I like to hear different perspectives. I've never found a community quite like FYM for that.

As far as any specific changes, I think anyone following those many pages of the Episcopalian threads knows the major sea change for me. But, you know, I think I was ready for it. Without some personal experiences outside the world of FYM (and also within FYM. Props to Irvine and Melon for that) I might not have been as open. But things had been happening and my own reading of the Bible was forcing me to reconsider certain interpretations that I'd always assumed were a given.

Going a few rounds about my faith on other threads as a Christian also forced me to examine what I believe as well, and in that case strengthned my faith.

So I'm grateful for FYM and for all those invisible faces and invaluable individuals out there.

Carry on, everyone!
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Old 06-23-2006, 05:09 PM   #5
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I come to FYM to be challenged and to have things to think about. There are people with whom I frequently disagree but they write extraordinary posts that really make me question my beliefs, but then this just makes my beliefs stronger because I have something to base them on.
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Old 06-23-2006, 05:15 PM   #6
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Re: FYM can't change the world, but FYM can change the world in me

Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511
i think most of us who post regularly come to be challenged -- and often this challenging forces us to examine our beliefs and personal totems, and many times i would imagine that being forced to defend yourself causes you to dig deeper and think through the logic of what we believe, ultimately strengthening and clarifying these beliefs.
This describes my experience. I often will scan posts when I wake up in the morning to start thinking about the issues.

I feel I have learned quite a bit both in the substance of what I know and believe, and the style in which it is best communicated.

I'd hate to give shout outs to just a couple of people because I have learned from so many, but I will give special props to Irvine. Some days, it seems as if we account for half the posts in this place as we wrestle through issues.
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Old 06-23-2006, 07:44 PM   #7
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I came to FYM--abandoning the U2 stuff about half an hour after I joined Interference-- and generally made it a home, taking brief vacations to other forums.

First thing I learned after all my initial spouting off here was how much I didn't know and I became much more inclined to listen and to question than to talk (not that I'm incapable of the lengthy post, lol).

I appreciate the difference in viewpoints from other countries and cultures and all those who have experiences different than mine.
I've valued the information I've learned--I've gotten mini scientific seminars from Wanderer and mini medical seminars from anitram, information on Judaism from Yolland and on the differences between varying denominations from varying sources. And more information than I ever wanted to know about breasts from Dreadsox. (I've learned a lot of things from people too numerous to mention here.)

Sometimes I've been disappointed with interplay and exchange on many topics, but have found so many gems interspersed where I least expected to find them that I keep looking anyway just to make sure (which appears to be my general modus operandi anyway).

There are people whose posts I look for automatically--Mrs. Springsteen, indra, Angela Harlem, maycocksean, Dread, Irvine, Wanderer (sometimes the last with trepidation). Sometimes I violently disagree (which I may voice or not), but I might hear something that intrigues me, makes me laugh, challenges me to consider something I haven't considered, teaches me something I didn't know or clarifies something I didn't understand. On the very rare occasion, I've been shaken to my core.

On the downside, sometimes I can predict someone's position almost word for word until I don't pay attention any more or hear the same arguments or judgments over and over again. For me, somebody who has something all figured out doesn't have much to teach me (and it's all about me )

I've seen (here and elsewhere) the myths I've held dear disintegrating until I have very few sacred cows left. I've become more objective. I cannot break down one post or one thread that has changed my position, but it's been all part of an evolutionary process.

I've used the word nuance a few times in the past and a few people have taken umbrage as if I were using some kind of code word. But I love shadings and hate black and white so value the people here who can move through the different shades. I love what you can learn from somebody's throwaway sentence or when you see a moment of recognition between two quarreling parties. I love when participants can blend the personal with the idea and when they can articulate their struggles or doubts or hypocrisies. I trust them more when I see a person instead of an ideology, theology or any other ology.

I appreciate when people can mingle play with seriousness.

I move comfortably in the realm of ideas, but when I read I want characters and FYM has an interesting mix of characters.
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Old 06-23-2006, 08:36 PM   #8
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FYM helps me hone some of my debating skills, it also gives me fresh ideas to use, and it opens my eyes to other perspectives. I also use it as an outlet, so few people I know want to talk politics or other deep issues affecting us today, but here I can do that and get things off my chest. I can also use it to promote candidates and convince people to vote for them


Also, the people in FYM tend to be my favorite over all Interferencers. There are good folks who visit here.
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Old 06-23-2006, 10:56 PM   #9
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I do not want to name anyone for fear of forgetting someone.

This is pretty much the only forum I come to for the last four years.

I have probably at one time or another had a good debate or two with almost every regular in here. I used to think I held my own, but life in the last year, has sapped the strength from my posts and drained the desire to debate much.

I still visit, I still read....and boy do I laugh a lot...yell at the screen a lot....and wish we could all sit down for a pint.

There are people in here I feel close to...have met...have tried to meet....and hope to meet. You know who you are.....
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Old 06-23-2006, 11:07 PM   #10
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Personally speaking, if I was looking for 100% agreement with my views I'd be at Larrythecableguy.com. Much better to be challenged and maybe, just maybe, learn a thing or two.

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Old 06-23-2006, 11:10 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dreadsox
....and hope to meet. You know who you are.....
The Kennedy Library is still in our future, my friend.
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Old 06-23-2006, 11:51 PM   #12
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Wow. What a great idea for a thread. This is a unique community we have here and I've loved being a part of it. Not to be trite here, but it feels like family -- more like cousins who get together on family functions and argue though.
I kind of come and go, but I sincerely appreciate everyone's input and perspectives. There's some brilliant people here.

Irvine, I appreciate your . . . humility in saying you can appreciate some of the Christian perspective. There's a form of Christianity that hasn't been kind to you and one I know you despise, but you're able to understand there's those of us who try to be different, and actually stick to the Bible.

I would have to say I've been influenced by FYM in two ways. The first is just gaining a broader understanding of what people think. There's a lot of variety in here and I've found it interesting to see where we all come from and what influences our perspectives.
The second helped changed my perspective on my faith -- a bit. I've never claimed a political party, but I didn't question the Right Wing Christianity that's so prevalent enough before. Hearing people's perspectives here didn't change my beliefs as a Christian, but it led me to see just how much Right Wing Christianity misses the mark that is Christ. I would say "God's Politics" by Jim Wallis, Relevant magazine and of course, Bono's example have influenced my thought on this more, but the dialogue in FYM has sharpened my perspective too.

Thanks guys.

God bless,

coemgen
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Old 06-24-2006, 12:25 AM   #13
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i just lurk.
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Old 06-24-2006, 02:17 AM   #14
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Most of my opinions have not changed, but the rigour of defence and the level of justification certainly have.
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Old 06-24-2006, 02:36 AM   #15
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Well I've been here almost 4 years.

I'm not sure if my stance has really changed on most issues, but my view has. My empathy has grown tremendously from viewing other peoples opinions.

And defending my views have forced me to research and educate myself on the issues.
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