Message from Squidman

Discussion in 'The Octopus' Den' started by Squidman, Oct 19, 2005.

  1. Squidman

    Squidman Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    Sorry I made this a new thread, but it is necessary that I make this point.

    I am leaving TONMO.com. This is why.

    When I discovered TONMO.com, I thought it was a Godsend. I was understood, for once, in a medium where I could express myself most effectively. I had friends that knew more about cephalopods that I do. It was the best scenario that I could be put in.

    Recently, I have begun to feel... Bad.
    Whenever I check the new posts, it brings me such pain observe that the "Well, it had to be on the Web" thread has been updated. I know that if I open the link, I will only feel pain. But I stay realistic, and I click on the thread, knowing that in the future, my religion will be the subject of scrutiny in the scientific community.

    When I read the malicious libel, I feel emotions I haven't felt in years. My past emotional scars, numerous and deep, are ripped wide open. None of you have the faintest idea of what it feels like to have your faith insulted in such a way. None of you know the pain I feel when I enter this site.


    I am not going to torture myself like this anymore.


    So long, Tony. You might see me lurking around someday, but not for a long time.


    -Squidman-

    [WEBMASTER EDIT: I've renamed the thread from "Attention all members" to "Message from Squidman". -- tonmo ]
     
  2. aNmLlUvR09

    aNmLlUvR09 Cuttlefish Registered

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    Squidman...i completely agree with you...except for the whole i'm not leaving part but yes...you're right
     
  3. cthulhu77

    cthulhu77 Titanites Supporter

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    Well, it is too bad that your faith does not allow for others to disbelieve...this is a scientific site, after all.
    I do not follow the odd lead that the church has taken in the last few decades. For quite a while, it has been demeaning all other religions, and now science itself.
    A backlash was to be expected.

    We will miss your input, Squidman.

    greg
     
  4. Feelers

    Feelers Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    You shouldn't leave just because of a thread, I am very strongly agaisnt creationism, but I don't want anyone who believes in creationism to leave Tonmo, or leave anywhere for that matter.
    The thing about tonmo is that is it a group of people from all walks of life all over the world brought together by their interest in cephalopods.

    A diversity of opinions is an asset.

    Everyone is entitled to their beliefs, and no-one is out to offend you.
    You could start your own pro-creationsim thread, - I would read it.
     
  5. cthulhu77

    cthulhu77 Titanites Supporter

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    exactly the point of having this site up and running!! Well said !

    greg
     
  6. Clem

    Clem Architeuthis Supporter Registered

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    Hello Squidman,

    I went back to read the posts in "Well, it had to be on the web..." to see if any of them rose to the level of malicious libel. Correcting for my own atheism, I'd allow that some of it is snarky in the extreme, but malicious and libelous? I don't think so. Greg is right about this being a science site. By definition, most of the people who enage in the discourse about the history and biology of these organisms are at least familiar with evolutionary theory, and most accept some variant of the theory as the best fit for the available facts. Facts, or course, are open to interpretation, and ten people can witness the same event and "see" very different, sometimes contradictory things. Science moves forward when those who drive it reach some kind of consensus on what they apprehend, and then try to come up with a comprehensible explanation that correlates with what they see.

    Religion, on the other hand, trades heavily in That Which Cannot Be Seen (by mortal eyes, at least). You may have noticed that when we at TONMO speculate grandly or foolishly about unseen, unknown animals and their unseen, unknown behavior and traits, we tend to get shot down post haste. I've felt quite foolish on any number of occasions, but I never felt I was being libeled or personally demeaned. Your beliefs may not be widely accepted in these parts, but they were tolerated, and I think it's unfortunate that you've interpreted generally respectful intellectual challenges as personal, spiritual affronts.

    Let me put it to you a bit more bluntly, Squidman: if your beliefs are strongly held and carefully considered, why not stand your ground and fight? It would be a shame to lose you, since you're a bright, good sort, but if the very sight of your nemesis thread really does offend thine eye, don't keep reading that thread. Self-flagellation passed out of Christian favor long ago.

    I'm sorry to see that you've decided to leave the site. I hope you'll re-consider.

    Cheers,
    Clem
     
  7. Jean

    Jean Colossal Squid Supporter

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    Sorry to hear you're leaving squidman.........but why read the thread if it bothers you that much? We can agree to differ after all. I'm pretty ambiguous about the whole debate. Was raised in the faith, my Mum has a diploma in theology and is very much a creationist....I'm a scientist, but I don't think the two are mutually exclusive.....nevertheless Mum & I have agreed to differ and tend not to discuss this (the "discussions" got a bit loud!).

    If you decide to revisit us, you'll be welcome.

    Jean
     
  8. erich orser

    erich orser Architeuthis Supporter Registered

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    Squidman,

    You're a very intelligent, perceptive Tonmoer who brings something very valuable to the table here. It would be a shame to have you go; I do hope you reconsider.
     
  9. tonmo

    tonmo Titanites Staff Member Webmaster Moderator

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    I am very, very sorry to read this. Squidman, you're a valued member of the community.

    Obviously you're not alone -- we have tons of "lurker" visitors and I have personally received several PMs/emails from people (lurkers and not) expressing disappointment on posts made in these forums on various subjects, including faith and politics. My answer is pretty consistent -- if you don't like it, you don't have to read it.

    (As an aside, I won't get into it here, but check out a post from me somewhere else in this forum reiterating our on-topic / off-topic post policies. They are indeed enforced. Since we are a community, and discussions do evolve, we do allow some off-topic posts in replies to threads. All, remember that every new thread must be about cephs except in the Supporters forum.)

    If the very sight of the thread having new posts is literally too agonizing, then there's not much I can do to help. Personally, I don't bother reading that thread myself, mostly because it's not high on my priority list. If you don't agree, either a) voice your position, b) ignore it completely, or c) do a) then b). Seems you've gotten a) out of the way, so you're at least halfway there! :smile: But don't let that thread defeat your interest in cephs and in the community. That'd be an awful shame.

    I hope you can basically ignore that thread and come here for the reason we're all here in the first place -- not politics, evolution, war, religion, or poop (ask octobot)... but rather, cephs.

    And dude, you should see the Supporter's forum. :grin: Seems I could use your help in The Troll of Dosidicus thread. :mrgreen:
     
  10. Phil

    Phil Colossal Squid Supporter Registered

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    Absolutely Squidman, as Tony, Clem, Erich and all the above posters have stated, please don't leave. At the end of the day we are all interested in the same thing, i.e cephalopods. Life is simply too short to find umbrage in a single thread; we have more in common here than we have differences.

    Some posters may be religious and some atheist, but we all benefit out of reading each others posts and interacting whether or not we agree. If one wants to read about the biology or hunting strategy of Chiroteuthis it matters not a jot if one is pro- or anti- Bush, or believe that the world was created 6,000 years ago.

    If you disagree with the Intelligent Design criticism and don't want to post there, just ignore the thread. But whatever you do please don't leave, no-one will gain anything from that.
     
  11. sorseress

    sorseress Colossal Squid Supporter

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    Please rethink your decision.

    Squidman, I have to agree with everyone else. It makes no sense for you to leave the entire site when there is only one thread you don't like. It seems obvious that if you are offended and pained by the views of most of the people who post to that thread, then don't go there. You have a lot to offer, and would be sorely missed. If you choose to leave anyway, no one can stop you, but it really would be a shame. Both of my grandfathers were ministers, I was brought up going to church or participating in church activities in one form or another about 6 times a week. I went to a Christian university where religion studies were required, so obviously I took a lot of them. Beliefs can differ widely in various Christian churches and our professors encouraged critical thinking, learning about the history of the Bible, understanding the difficulties with translation that have occurred over the centuries, learning to identify when and by whom various passages of the Bible were written. All of my religion teachers were ordained ministers with docterates in various aspects of theology. None of them were Creationists, they were, however very devout Christians. Being a Christian and being an evolutionist are not mutually exclusive concepts.

    I sincerely hope you will reconsider.

    Sharon
     
  12. cthulhu77

    cthulhu77 Titanites Supporter

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    I went to church once.




    (actually, I was an acolyte, and had considered the priesthood...believe it or not...then I met this girl and )
     
  13. Feelers

    Feelers Vampyroteuthis Registered

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    I went five days a week for 5 years when I was at an anglican school when I was younger. Thats actually quite a lot of church for a devout atheiest. Over 1/6 days of my entire life having gone to church. I never quantified that before!!!
     
  14. monty

    monty Colossal Squid Staff Member Supporter

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    I certainly want to chime in as well asking you to reconsider. I value your contribution here, and I actually found your last post on the thread in question to be very sensible and reasonable. I'm not sure what posts in particular you see as attacking Christianity in general-- I certainly don't have the impression that anyone is bothered by Christians or the Christian religion as a whole. As you yourself said, the things that thread are complaining about are not representative of Christianity as a whole, and I believe that is understood as implicit in the discussion. However, it's not my place to question what you may or may not find offensive, but I would urge you to either just avoid reading the thread or try to be accepting that there are people who have strong opinions on the topic, some of which may rub you the wrong way. No one is excluding you from offering differing viewpoints, and in fact when you last chimed into the discussion, several of us agreed with you and offered supporting comments, and no one directly rebutted your opinions at all.

    To be honest, I'm completely perplexed at this being an issue, since you've generally come across to me as entirely reasonable, mature, and open. I have no idea where you get the idea that the thread objects to Christianity in any large sense; in my reading, it's only objecting to Christians who hold a particularly radical literal view of the Bible, and insist that it should be incorporated into the scientific establishment and the public educational system, to the subversion of the scientific method and all the principles on which science is founded. Since you've made it clear that you don't consider them representative of your interpretation of Christianity, I really don't understand your stance...

    I hope you stay, but I wish you well if you decide not to. :goodbye: if that's what you prefer.
     
  15. chrono_war01

    chrono_war01 Colossal Squid Supporter

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    Not much to say, please don't leave us! You're a great member and we all value your contribution here.

    We all wish for you to stay, but if you decide to leave, then :goodbye:
     
  16. WhiteKiboko

    WhiteKiboko Colossal Squid Supporter Registered

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    I think leaving the board over a single thread might be a bit excessive.... i for one haven't even bothered reading that particular thread in a long time once it started taking a certain slant (even if i agreed with some things being said)

    how about sticking around?
     
  17. GPO87

    GPO87 Sepia elegans Staff Member Moderator

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    Dear Squidman, I highly doubt you're still coming back to view this thread, but if you are...
    I just wanted to let you know that I feel for you, I always cringe when I go into that thread, but I realize that not everyone can possibly share my beleifs, I have to follow my own religion, even in a scientific community. I hope that you will reconsider, and maybe chat to myself or some of the other religious people on the site... (I know there are some) Please come back, we will miss you!
     
  18. Fujisawas Sake

    Fujisawas Sake Larger Pacific Striped Octopus Supporter Registered

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    Squidman,

    I wish I could say I agree with your decision, but I cannot. I wrote a column against Intelligent Design and have penned one or two angry letters against Creation 'Science' a lot in my day. Yet, yes, I have a religious faith about which I try my hardest to be respectful. Those aspects, religion and science, of my life are separate, and I choose the way I keep them both in perspective as a deeply personal thing.

    You do have a point about how we on the TONMO board can get loose sometimes, and how we can inadvertently (and purposely) insult people and their beliefs. I, myself, am very guilty of firing off one of the nastiest posts on this site on an unrelated matter and I still feel bad about that. Thankfully, Tony had a clearer head than I. I will say I'm sorry if you ever felt that we insulted your faith. I really doubt that was ever the intent.

    No one here is insulting your faith. My frustration personally comes from the use of Christianity as a weapon in the idolatry known as the “culture wars” in the U.S.. The faith has great meaning, and its foundational philosophy of “Love one Another” is a great, world-changing thing. But religions, being a human thing, have a nasty habit of being warped by those in power to hold onto that power. Scientists for ages have faced oppression by churches for their works, even when the benefit may have come to humanity as a whole. I have a bad feeling that the roots of any anti-Christian prejudices stem from this and the following reasons.

    I call the “culture wars” (or as I prefer - “kultur wars” - WW1 reference) idolatry because I don't believe it's really for the benefit of our society. Religious fanatics with very dubious agendas are trying to seize political power and control over our lives and that has historically been a bad idea. Many horrors have come from so-called 'religious' people taking power and using their faith to do this. I don't want to see another rise of evil, anti-religious madmen like Torquemada, Hitler, and Saddam Hussein. You want a great example of evil? Slavery. Yet, there are 'anti'-Christians here in the U.S. who are still pushing that it was the 'will of God' that many black people were stripped from Africa, chained, beaten, and outright murdered to 'spread the word'. Considering that Christianity's philosophy is “love one another”, these were obviously anti-Christian acts committed by those who believed that they were following the faith. Well, they were wrong, and amoral morons to boot.

    All this had lead to a backlash against the faith. People are quick to hop on a pendulum, and religious prejudice is most often the result. It's rampant. Christians who hold to the ideas of love and peace are outright hated now, both by people prejudiced against Christianity and so-called 'conservative' and 'liberal' Christians who hold more to political allegiances rather than the foundations of their supposed belief.

    So I'm outed as a Christian. BFD. Live with it, people.

    So why don't I agree with your decision? Sometimes you need to hold your own. Sometimes you need to say something and counter. I would have loved if someone at school wrote a counter argument about Intelligent Design to illuminate the debate. I would have enjoyed some level of rational discourse. But there was none. Nothing. People just didn't care. I think you're shooting yourself down. I feel that you're hiding in the dark when you could be shining in the sun. Truth is, the reason I don't post on that thread much anymore is because I think I have said most of what I want to say, and I have been pressed for time as of late. Start your own threads. Stay and keep the conversation lively. Oh, and as far as the subject of your faith being a problem with the scientific community? Well, yes. It will be at times. I'm sorry to say, but you will have to learn to live with it, as I have, if you plan to exist within that community.

    This goes to all you lurkers as well: post! Say something! TONMO thrives on insight and interest, and you all deserve respect and an ear. I, for one, besides welcoming our new cephalopod overlords, also welcome insight and communication. Best of luck to everyone. Hope to see you soon, Squidman.

    Sushi and Sake,

    John
     
  19. GPO87

    GPO87 Sepia elegans Staff Member Moderator

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    here here! If I could have put it that elequently I would have!
     
  20. joefish84

    joefish84 Sepia elegans Registered

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    i think hes already gone people...
     

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