Glad to hear :)|
Reply #4781. May 10 12, 8:18 PM
|A couple of months ago, I was taken to my first meeting of the local Council of Faiths. The agenda for this meeting was, they said, the Olympics. Er - haven't they rather missed the boat? Surely everything that needs to be discussed has been discussed, long ago, and thoroughly? |
The first thing we noticed as we walked in was that one wall had been covered with bits of paper bearing the "Golden Rule" in about twenty different religions and faith systems.
No, not that one. More like these:
"Love your neighbor as yourself."(Leviticus 19:18)
"What you do not wish for yourself, do not do to others." (Confucius)
"That which is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow." (Rabbi Hillel)
"?'do unto others...' is a concept that essentially no religion misses entirely. But not a single one of these versions of the golden rule requires a God." (Greg M. Epstein, Humanist)
"Nothing which breathes, which exists, which lives, or which has essence or potential of life, should be destroyed or ruled over, or subjugated, or harmed, or denied of its essence or potential." (Jainism)
"Doasyouwouldbedoneby." (Charles Kingsley) (No, this wasn’t on the wall.) I was surprised to see how few people had realised that the concept of "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" is pretty well global, and has been around for thousands of years.
At last we took our seats and were ready for the chat. There were a few sixth-formers who had been working on relevant projects, and a couple of dozen adults. Someone stood up and said, before we start, she’d like to establish a few ground rules. She invited us to offer ways we might conduct ourselves in debate. WHAT? I think everyone here knows how to conduct a conversation. We’re not at kindergarten. I’m tempted to offer “respect” on the grounds that that’s all we need, and we can all say yes and get on with it, but I’m the new girl, so I say nothing.
A hand goes up. Oh good grief, we really are in kindergarten!
(Yes, very good, thank you. I think respect covers everything. Can we get on with it now please?)
“Yes, that’s a very good start. Anyone else?”
(No - not more!)
“Yes, that’s very important too. We can’t conduct a debate with people talking over each other. Any more?”
(Huh? What more do you want?)
“Not raising our voices.”
“Absolutely. There is no need for us to shout at each other. Anything else?”
“No bad language.”
(Oh come on, we’re really scraping the barrel here.)
“Well said. We don’t want to use profanity, do we?”
(Much more like this and I could be tempted.)
At last, the introductory nonsense is over; we’re about to find out why we came. A few people stood up and talked... the sixth-formers spoke articulately and engagingly about the work they’d done... break for food and drink, which was nice, and a dish for donations towards it - more talk... is this going anywhere?
I think what they wanted to do was to talk about giving the event some sort of religious imprint. One of them said that they wanted to intercept the torch as it made its way through Bedford, and nip into a church to bless it, but Olympic rules expressly forbid any religious involvement. Who’d have known?
At the end of the meeting, the treasurer asked me if I’d like to become a member. Membership is inexpensive and rewarding. Thank you, I might do that. (But I probably won’t.)
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Last week, I was part of an NHS focus group on local cardiac services. I don’t know how it came about, but someone somewhere has had the wisdom to suggest that local cardiac services may be better shaped by the people who will use them, rather than anonymous bureaucrats in NHS ivory towers.
The woman running the meeting introduced her colleagues, and we introduced ourselves. We were offered drinks: asked for information, for their statistics: told that we could leave at any time: told that it would not be possible to trace the information we provided back to us: told that the discussion would be confidential, and asked that we respect the confidentiality too. Fair enough. Off we go.
Just before we start, she said, I want to mention some ground rules - no interrupting or shouting or insulting other people for any reason at all. I’m sorry, she said, but I have to say that.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Well actually no, you don’t.
The sort of people who choose to go to a multi-religious discussion group, or have been invited to attend a health-related discussion, tend generally to be the sort of people who know how to conduct themselves in public. Don’t they? Do we really need to start grown-up meetings with the feeling that teacher is warning us that we’d better not be naughty?
Reply #4782. May 28 12, 9:39 AM
wow what a update, not hear from you in 16 days was getting worried, but had my own problems so dealt with them.|
Is good to know you are ok Lesley and i love reading your posts.
Reply #4783. May 28 12, 11:06 AM
Oh my. Smiled at the sad parts, gasped at the funny parts. Lesley, you REALLY need to write a book. You're fabulous.|
Reply #4784. May 28 12, 1:41 PM
|I'm fine, thanks, Gary and I'm sorry if I worried you. |
Thank you, Jakeroo - I am quite bowled over! I haven't got a book inside me struggling to get out, and I have nothing to write about. My son says I should write my autobiography but I think I'd have to wait till everyone was dead first.
More fun with the people at the online shopping company. I was looking at pittas last week, and saw that one brand didn't contain soya flour, which is a good thing, but the allergen and dietary information said it did. Sesame seeds too. Who puts sesame seeds in normal pittas? So I emailed them, pointed out the discrepancy, and asked them to check the ingredients.
I got a reply very quickly.
" Currently all product information displayed is decided by our suppliers. We are working ... to improve and increase the availability of this information across all product ranges.
" We are aware of the need to provide this information on our website so that customers are better informed in regards to allergies, intolerances to certain food products and consumer concerns surrounding ethical trading.
" Thank you for your valued feedback and patience, and I hope that you continue to enjoy shopping with ... "
How good is that? I rang the company that makes them. The answer is that there is no soya or sesame in the ingredients, but they are made in a factory that handles soya and sesame. Either the data entry people were taking short cuts, or someone is lying. We live in an age of information, apparently. *sigh* Wouldn't it be lovely if we saw more of the information we wanted?
Reply #4785. May 28 12, 5:03 PM
I was beginning to get withdrawal symptoms. Well caught up!|
Reply #4786. May 29 12, 7:37 AM
|Thanks, David. Hope you didn't suffer too much withdrawal. |
I would never have guessed that anybody noticed I'd stopped posting here. Two weeks of my silence matched by two weeks of everyone else's silence!
For me, writing here is only enjoyable when there's interaction. Without it, I become an unpaid hack talking to herself. YMMV.
Reply #4787. May 29 12, 8:58 AM
I've been looking at ingredient labels...And on most, if it says 'None' of something, there may be an asterisk. Then, at the very bottom, it says: May be processed by machines that come in contact with your 'None.'|
You would think they could come up with a better system...Sure. :)
Reply #4788. May 29 12, 1:55 PM
|Not great, is it? You wouldn't expect meat to be labelled: |
" Strictly Kosher
" (packed in a factory that processes pork) "
so why do they get away with this sort of sloppiness?
Probably because there's no legislation giving people with allergies the right to all the processed food they want.
You're not alone, by the way - I've been driving people mad label-reading for years.
Reply #4789. May 29 12, 3:59 PM
Re #4782 – “The sort of people who choose to go to a multi-religious discussion group, or have been invited to attend a health-related discussion, tend generally to|
be the sort of people who know how to conduct themselves in public. Don’t they? Do we really need to start grown-up meetings with the feeling that teacher
is warning us that we’d better not be naughty?” Unfortunately, there will invariably be at least one person present who *doesn’t behave, who *ruins it for everyone else, who *doesn’t give a fat rat.
Yoy may not think there’s a book, but we all know better. **What was *that? Why does anyone have to be dead before you write?
“Working on the problem” = we’re not, but please calm down and get your nose out of our business. “Thank you for…” = your concerns have been heard, and I know I’m supposed to give a hoot, but I really don’t. – “We live in an age of information, apparently.” Information that can be tampered with to suit whoever’s purpose… so long as they can get away with it, they’ll continue.
“Wouldn't it be lovely if we saw more of the information we wanted?” – It would indeed. In an ideal world…
“For me, writing here is only enjoyable when there's interaction. – No argument from this end.
“why do they get away with this sort of sloppiness?” – Because it’s within legal limits.
Reply #4790. May 30 12, 8:41 AM
|It usually takes one person to spoil things - but on these two occasions there wasn't one! I don't think anyone would have spoilt it either, even without the stern finger-wagging we got. |
Why does anyone have to be dead before I write? Because I don't know how I can write about my profoundly dysfunctional family while some of them are still alive.
Jazmee, I am very pleased to see that you have a working knowledge of shop-speak. The words may differ from one shop to the next, but the sentiments don't. I have emailed this lot a few times, on different topics. I am always very polite. Really I am.
For me, writing here is only enjoyable when there's interaction. Or, to put it another way, if there's no interaction, I may as well knock this on the head and keep a diary.
Reply #4791. May 30 12, 9:44 AM
My mum goes to a discussion group for retired people, most were professionals including doctors and scientists, and their behaviour for the ones who do (about half apparently) would make the old days on the chat boards look like a walk in the park. These big egos apparently seem to be worse for people who used to have an outlet for them officially, and when they retire it seems they need to make their impressions and revert to childhood. We had a few on the counselling course but they didn't last too long.|
Reply #4792. May 30 12, 11:08 AM
keep on posting Lesley on that thought off to post on my blog as i have news. for once|
Reply #4793. May 30 12, 11:58 AM
|I hadn't thought of that. It's never occurred to me to find a discussion group, although I've recently met someone who goes to one, and may know others who go but don't mention it. I nearly asked her today what she thought of being on the receiving end of lessons in polite discourse, but didn't have time. Remind me to ask her next week. |
The cardiac group are a nice lot. I think the attitude here is that heart disease a a great leveller, and nobody is more important than anyone else. That doesn't mean that everyone likes everyone, but they don't let how they feel get in the way of what goes on.
The faiths group spent much of their time treading on eggshells, and it was all I could do not to keep checking my watch. I can't imagine anything that would provoke them to have a stand-up row.
Perhaps people need more on common than a weekly conversation topic to keep their egos in check? Or perhaps they really do need a wagged finger!
Gary, let's hope you're getting somewhere. At. Last.
Reply #4794. May 30 12, 12:51 PM
How peculiar...........a discussion group! Why on earth, unless fanatically interested in something, would anyone wish to sit around "discussing"?|
Personally I have my opinions, courage of my convictions, and opinions of others would not alter them one iota, so see no need, or have any desire, to "discuss".
However, all power to those who do, takes all sorts I guess.
Reply #4795. May 31 12, 7:06 AM
With you on that point C30,|
Reply #4796. May 31 12, 10:02 AM
So am I.|
Reply #4797. May 31 12, 12:59 PM
So am I.|
Reply #4798. May 31 12, 12:59 PM
So am I.|
Reply #4799. May 31 12, 12:59 PM
Nice of you to be "with me" three times Jazmee ! Lol|
Reply #4800. May 31 12, 2:13 PM
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