I’ve set up this blog to be like a graduate or advanced-undergraduate class: I occasionally put out material to stimulate discussion on topics like consciousness, psychic functioning, spirituality, etc., and then mainly let the “students” (and we are all students of the Great Unknown) draw each other out and share what they know about it. Except for regular postings from my ITP classes, I generally try not to lecture, but be, when needed, a discussion facilitator.
Sometimes in actual classes though, the discussion gets too specialized, and while it may fascinate a few students, it leaves most lost. It’s best to continue such discussions privately, off-line from this blog, rather than risk losing many others. If something really exciting results from an extended off-line discussion that’s relevant to the blog, the conclusions can then be posted here.
When we post something, we usually want to be read and understood. In moderating another list, I’ve found some things that up the odds that you will get read and understood.
– For one thing, keep posts short. We’re all too busy and tend to automatically groan when we see a long, long post. So we’re more likely to read a short one, and, if the content is interesting, read future ones.
– Second, try to make your post of general interest, not of interest just to a very few other readers who’ve been following the details of previous posts. If something starts like “Contrary to what A said happens to him I experience….” and I don’t happen to remember what A said, I’m unlikely to keep reading.
– This doesn’t mean keep things shallow, of course.
– Politeness, of course, is always a good idea even when we disagree. We’re much more likely to read and think about a disagreement expressed politely than about an unskillful statement that we are wrong….
How to meet all these somewhat contradictory goals of deep but concise, continuing discussion but able to stand alone, etc….. Ah, that’s an art we all need practice at…