Bursting my bubble...

The noble Order of the Knights of Jubal traces its origins back to the Year Two Thousand A.D., when a group of distinguished persons of good and true character, founded the order to promote chivalry and honour. The order takes its name from our leader, Alexander Jubal McRae, who on two (so far) occasions has been seriously injured, in one case fatally, defending an innocent woman from attackers.

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Postby Seldom on Wed Oct 17, 2001 11:31 am

: <IMG SRC="http://www.keenspot.com/KeenBoard/tongue.gif">eers about::<P>Anyone else?
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Postby Atlas_v1.1 on Thu Oct 18, 2001 12:37 am

My question is in regards to the many seemingly very wise texts your Orders keep. Is it possible that edited versions could be made available?
Or, if such is not doable, what other books can be recommended for a young Companion as myself, to improve and strengthen spirit and thought?<P>My mind is thirsty for wise words, and hungry for inspiration...
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Postby Seldom on Thu Oct 18, 2001 8:44 am

Oooo... busy day, alright... <P>Josh:<P> as always, Josh, one must remember one's audience when quoting anything. If I quote Moses before the Quiet Eyes, they will listen dutifully (because I outrank 98% of the Order), and then carry on with their work. Religion has no place at all in their work, and so it has no bearing on their current assignment and so is generally ignored. Before the Merciful Truth, who are by and large highly educated people, I would expect the Physics textbook to carry more weight, but they are the "godless scientists" of our Orders. Not to insult them, but their job is to become so objective in their assessment of works that they can remove personal bias, therefore, the technical becomesmore valid than the literature of faith, because the literature of faith carries less immeadiate evidence. The Silent Shields would either agree with a statement or disagree with a statement. Shields are trained to be decisive and immeadiate in nature, planning is for the Lords, they are present to act. In general, they do not considerthe source of a material in its judgement.<P>To answer your third question, as to what weight such a quote carries with the Council.<P>None. The Testament clearly states that we may not act in the name or intention of faith in our work within the Orders. As Lords, our work is effective in a broad range and in the long term, and therefore, we must be more careful than any other to remove religious bias from our work. So, a religious quote, alone, would carry no weight at all. Now, a religious quote backed with fact, other "more reliable" information, or field reports is a completely different matter. In this, we come back to my last post about religion notbeing central to your point when arguing before Council. We cannot assign our Knights based on "God's Will" because we are not servants of God. We are servants of the greater good of Humanity. If these ideals coincide, so be it, but we work very hard to maintain our separate intention.<P>As for its weight with me, and my view of the reliability of religious texts as a genre of literature.<P>I, personally, am of the opinion, that any piece of literature whose intent is primarily religious is inherently flawed. It is impossible to lay the beauty and immensity of human thought or belief on paper in any language. Any attempt to explain or justify one's beliefs to the world at large is pointless, because faith is an inherently irrational thing. We believe something because we want to believe something. My whims hold no value to the world, therefore my beliefs are as equally valueless. When i begin describing what I think and feel in the global scale of Faith and Religion, I am depersonifying myself and devaluing my beliefs by stating that another could ever see the world exactly as I have. Therefore, the written works which have become the center of so many religions today, in my mind, completely invalidate the faiths they preach, because one who has learned only from a book knows nothing. Those few individuals I have met in life who are truly faithful were put off by churches and books and priests, and found faith in themselves. Many of them are monotheists in the Christian or Catholic vein. They are different in that they discovered faith in themselves, not in literature. Faith is internal, and can never be accurately described by any mortal being, and therefore, such religious texts as i have found, while often a trove of conventional wisdom and quotable parable, are not reliable by any stretch of the imagination.<P>--<P>For Atlas:<P>Sadly, what little I quote here is as much as I can offer you of the Testament or of Reflections, Conversations, and Memories (all of which are by Darius). But as for other works to fill the mind and strengthen the spirit, I can offer some.<P>Utopia By Sir Thomas Moore<P>The Prince By Niccolo Machiavelli<P>Nichomachean Ethics by Plato<P>Hage Kure: The Way of the Samurai (find an abridged version)<P>Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind<P>Sun Tzu's The Art of War (find an unabridged version)<P>Walden by David Henry Thoreau<P>That is a good place to start. Come back when you're done with those... ::grins:: <P>
Life is about Thought... Thought is the product of Inspiration... Inspiration comes from Living. Thus, Life is about Living.
-Darius, Reflections<P>And lastly, for Silver:<P>With a Whip and a chair, and circus music.<P>Just kidding.<P>Honestly, I spoke before about Respect. All things, all people, all ideas deserve the basic courtesy that I myself would desire. Therefore, while I may argue my point, my goal is never to invalidate another's, no matter how much I may believe their view to be flawed. MY view is just that, MY view. Therefore, to them, it must be my view that is flawed. "Perception is the mother of all arguments" (Darius, Coversations) and as such, I try never to argue. All views hold some validity, otherwise we would not hold them. <P>So, I tend to approach other philosphies prepared to listen, because if I can glean the reasons for their belief, I can find the truth behind them, and also prepared to sacrifice my own view temporarily in the quest for understanding. It is important to understand a view before setting it aside as "not for me", or embracing it as "in line with my thinking". "To follow blindly is foolish, but to seek understanding is the path to wisdom" (also Darius, Conversations). But i have rambled again, so I will summarize.<P>I approach unknwon philosophies with respect and an open mind, because it would be foolish to immeadiately or hastily write off any peice of human thought.<P>Perhaps my longest post ever.<P>-Seldom
Knight of the Three Orders.<P>"To be verbose in the pursuit of better exchange is meritous, to be verbose for the sake of exercising your vocabulary is absurd." -Darius, Reflections<P>"What I have not learned from living, I have learned from forgetting. What I have learned from forgetting is that I have known too much to live simply. The price we pay for the wisdom we gain is the simplicity of living. In giving up wisdom, we become wiser still, for in the end, we seek a life of peace, and the opening of new frontiers of knowledge. What frontiers can remain when we have become enlightened? When you becme enlightened, you will think to turn around and return to where you began, for all the frontiers are behind you."
-Darius, Reflections. (one of my favorite quotes of all time)
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Postby Silver Adept on Thu Oct 18, 2001 9:34 am

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Seldom:
<B>I do believe in an afterlife, of sorts, and in karma and reincarnation. But that contradiction requires an assumption of the existance of the soul and the dual nature of the universe.</B><HR></BLOCKQUOTE><P>Understandable. Whic means there is still a punishments/retirbutions system in place for wrongdoing, it's just that you don't believe in a place where absolute good or absolute evil can be achieved without multiple efforts at it. Heaven and Hell don't exist to you because everyone is on a constant shuffle, moving up and down the karmic ladder until one finally reaches a goal. And even then, there might be another goal to do.
<B> <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>
As a member of the Three Orders, my position does not change. My beliefs are not altered by the policies and practices of the Orders. We are all in the Orders because WE want to make a difference. While I do leave my religious convictions on the backburner during my audiences, I do have them, and they are, in my mind, as valid and potent as any other person's. But, once again, the simple answer. As a Knight, I do not believe in Heaven, and the only Hell I believe in is the kind Silent Shields give out in exchange for wrongdoing.</B><HR></BLOCKQUOTE><P>I believe I understand. The Three Orders taek a stand much like our own. As for Silent Shields, I hope that I never have to be on the wrong side of any of them. <P>And I'm assuming that you're giving smiple answers because the ones closr to the truth would take many more pages to explain fully... and perhaps could not be explained fully. <P>Answer what you can. <P>Is there a next question? I believe so. Now... what was it? Hmm.... <P>Oh, yes, now I remember. How do you approach another philosophy different that your own?
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Postby Atlas_v1.1 on Fri Oct 19, 2001 12:16 am

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Seldom:
<B>Utopia By Sir Thomas Moore
The Prince By Niccolo Machiavelli
Nichomachean Ethics by Plato
Hage Kure: The Way of the Samurai (find an abridged version)
Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind
Sun Tzu's The Art of War (find an unabridged version)
Walden by David Henry Thoreau
</B><HR></BLOCKQUOTE><P>Okay... Seems I've got my winter nights cut out for me. Thanks! <IMG SRC="http://www.keenspot.com/KeenBoard/smile.gif">
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Postby Josh the Aspie on Fri Oct 19, 2001 1:25 am

#1. I agree with darius on that last one, and would like to add to it... if he has not something similar in his works. The greatest personal afliction that I could ever experiance is to reach the limit of what I could learn, or lose the abilitiy to love. As long as I have the ability to learn... and to love... I have all that I need. I needn't teach others, though if they seek my teachings I will be gladdened to give. I needn't recieve love... though it brightens life in existance. All that I require in life is a pourpose, and an anchor. Learning, and Love.<P>*shivers from the way that sounded in my head* Sorry if it reads cheesy... but it realy felt good to say.<P>#2. While an organization filled with different faiths should not base their decisions on a faith, or an excerpt from it... I would think that they could not ignore it either. I did not mean to ask how much wieght an excerpt from a scripture would hold as a person's only point... but as one of them. If you where to reference one of the laws of mosis simply as an ancient code of behavior set forth for a people in hardship to guide them, and pointed out similar laws... some from religious texts... some not... would it hold weight as a historical reference? That is what I meant to ask... and you have already answered me in it seems.
#3. In many cases I agree with you in the statment of the falicies of scriptutes. For one thing, they have to be interprited... so any given passage can have many many meanings... some of them diametricaly opposed. "And the faggots will be thrown into the fires of hell" Um... d00d... back then faggots meant bundles of sticks... and um... it was a totaly different medifore. Stopit. "Dun you tell me to stopit. I know what I read." *sigh* Then, there's the fact that there are enough contradictions in any holy text that even with skewing the interpritations of the holy book, not all of them can be solved. I personaly think that you have to take everything in the bible, or any other holy book, and see if it fits with what -you- feel the theme to be if you're a christian. Heck, the bablyonians had a myth that was a precursur to Noah, but was rather different... so that's one story I don't realy trust to be more than myth. Especialy with the part about the rainbow at the end.<P>And then too... I know what I currently beleive... but if I tried to write down my beliefs... it would take at least 10 years for a good colection of my beleifs... in which time they would have changed, and modulated.. and caused contradictions in earlier writings. -and- I wouldn't get the point across. You can get a general idea of what may have happened, and what the theme expresed by the religion is... but little more from the actual book. I try to find religion in a combination of texts, pastoral explinations of realy wierd ones that I don't think fit (and if their explination makes it fit, and it makes sence to where I can beleive it... I keep it... if not. I don't. Example: Jesus comming to tear families apart. Pastor basicaly said (boild down version) he's starting a new relgion... that's going to steam some palm leaves the wrong way, and fights are going to ensue...<P>Sorry. I guess I got a little.... disjointed there.<P>------------------
OM MANI PADME HUM: The jewl in the lotus of the heart. -tebetin prayer wheel prayer. Feel the Karma increase.<P>Companion of the Order Ivbalis<P>---begin CRFH!!! code ---
F U++ IRC+ R++ RM (H undefined) PSL++ FW S+ FR WB GN MW++++ AI++ D&M R&Di+ BR RPG FDS-- BSL N++ P++ W++++ I++ E- DOOM SOC+ AF+++ DCC+++ UQ+++
---end CRFH!!! code ---
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Postby Seldom on Fri Oct 19, 2001 9:08 am

"Life without pursuit of knowledge is worht no more than death. Apathy is the killer of thought, the ender of dreams. If ever I fall so deep into myself that I cease to seek further enlightenment, see me buried peaceably, for I am already dead."
-Darius, Reflections<P>"Love is the birth of beauty. Love is the death of ambition. Beauty it the source of inspiration. Ambition is the source of ingenuity. Without inspiration, we cannot seek enlightenment. Without ingenuity, our quest is doomed to fail. Love is the birth and death of enlightenment. Enlightenment is the life of the soul. Love is birth and death. The passage from birth to death is the truest definition of living. Love is Living. Living is all of Life. Love is Life."
-Darius, Reflections.<P>
To answer #2, in the name of thorough response;
No... history is rarely an issue. We act now and are a force for the future. While we can never ignore the past, we must see it through the eye of the present with the will of the future. Little quoting is done from historical reference, religious texts included, because we seek to act on present information. While knowledge of the past prevents its repetition, we refuse to dwell on it, or on the view of it others have left behind for us.<P>
-Seldom
Knight of the Three Orders.<P>"What do you Fear, Darius, all people must fear something?"<P>"I fear nothing."<P>"You are a liar, sir, all people carry some fear within them.<P>"I do not lie, I fear nothing; it is the only thing I cannot truly know."<P>"I do not understand."<P>"Of course you do not understand. Nothing is as much a miracle as substance. But, while I may comprehend the fabric of substance, meditate upon it and define it in the terms of will and thought, I cannot do these things to nothing. It is the infinitely unknowable, and therefore the only obstacle I can never overcome."<P>-Darius, Conversations<P>
"I found nothing today. It was exactly where I always knew it would be."
-Darius, Reflections.
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Postby Kanaeda Kuonji on Sat Oct 20, 2001 9:06 am

I do have a question, Seldom:<P>How should one handle a situation in which he or she must deal with groups founded in hatred or ignorance. Should they try to point out the folly of the group, or just avoid them? What should be done if this group's bigotry and hatred starts to become contagious?<P>Can one person hope to stop this swarm? <P>I have encountered this situation, and most of the proverbial weapons I have used had no effect on them? <P>I hope that you can provide the answer, for I have had no answer to such a problem.<P>------------------
Rodney Dean, CI of the Order of the Knights of Jubal.<P>"The mystery of love is greater than the mystery of death." --Oscar Wilde<P>"Ardente veritate/Urite mala mundi. (Burn with truth/Scorch the world of evil.)"- Translated from "Liberi Fatali" theme of Final Fantasy 8<P>TCM Code: D++K++++Denise+++L+++ Bf--M----C++T++B+ Nem a--US
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Postby Seldom on Sat Oct 20, 2001 9:55 am

Complex question,Kanaeda.<P>If such a group is violent in nature, they should be avoided at all costs unless one has real backup in the form of figures of authority and enforcers of law.<P>If these groups are simply malicious, my usual approach would be to simply destroy their logic. Surprisingly, few hate groups are based on an irrational hatred of somthing or someone. Many of them honestly believe that some minority is the cause of their problems or is deserving of their wrath. Often by dismantling the logical justification that allows them to sleep at night, one removes their willingness to act.<P>If these people are campaigning actively and publicly, and you are the brave sort, return the favor. If they say "Hate this grpup", spread information about why these people's information is incorrect. After all, the only true enemy is ignorance.<P>Sadly, if such a group is supported by the community, or the community is unwilling to act to quash such activities (which is the same as supporting them, in my mind) you may be in trouble. Try appealing to higher authorities, Board of Education, Police, and Social Services are all often good bets. Try not to overreact, as blowing something out of proportion destroys your credibility, which hampers later efforts. They key is to never let anything slide. If even one fight breaks out, tell someone. If even one word is thrown in harassment, tell someone. And not just anyone, someone who will care.<P>No, One person is not sufficient to stop a swarm, but one person can gather enough people to do so.<P>I am lucky in that, in such endeavours, I possess ready aid. Few are so lucky. I wish you the best of fortunes in your endeavour.<P>-Seldom
Knight of the Three Orders.<P>
"Hate is the fire that burns in Ignorant hearts, and only the truly heartless remain hateful under the soothing touch of knowledge."
-Darius, Reflections<P>"A little knowledge is a dangerous thing... because a little knowledge is just the weapon a lot of ignorance is looking for."
-Eric the Blind.
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Postby Seldom on Sat Oct 27, 2001 10:23 am

Seven days without a resquest... have I exhausted you already? ::grins::<P>-Seldom
Knight of the Three Orders.<P>"What is the intention of this exercise, Darius?"<P>"Which one, M'Lord? The Writing? or the contemplation that I record?"<P>"The Writing?"<P>"It is that I will not forget my own lessons until I am ready to, and that others may learn from my tribulations."<P>"and the contemplations themselves?"<P>"They are that I may record them."<P>-Darius, Conversations.
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Postby Kanaeda Kuonji on Sat Oct 27, 2001 10:33 am

In light of my previous post, another question remains.<P>We have seen what has happened w/Falwell and Robertson on the 700 Club. <P>What measures can be taken when hatred hits upon those of a faith. The Mormon Church, various pagan religions, and most recently, Islam, are all victims of this. <P>What should be done when the actions of a small number within a faith causes the others who may share the beliefs to be persecuted, and what measures might be taken to prevent it before it begins?<P>------------------
Rodney Dean, CI of the Order of the Knights of Jubal.<P>"The mystery of love is greater than the mystery of death." --Oscar Wilde<P>"Ardente veritate/Urite mala mundi. (Burn with truth/Scorch the world of evil.)"- Translated from "Liberi Fatali" theme of Final Fantasy 8<P>TCM Code: D++K++++Denise+++L+++ Bf--M----C++T++B+ Nem a--US
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Postby Silver Adept on Sun Oct 28, 2001 5:02 am

...And everyone knows I have questions... I just would rather that other people get involved in the act as well. <P>So I'll throw a question that's right now important to my own search... <P>Is it possible to know when you have found a faith/practice that is the "right one" for you?
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Postby Seldom on Mon Oct 29, 2001 12:40 pm

Silver:<P>In theory, the "knowing" IS what makes it the right faith/practice for you. It is the sense of belonging or truth in a belief that makes it yours. Seek until you find something that fits in your own heart, mind and soul.<P>Kanaeda:<P>As for prevention, my advice is education. If people know and understand their neighbors, they fear them less. Likewise, the actions most useful now in combatting bigotry are contribution and education. If people are made to see that it is only a small faction of a much larger and mainly benevolent organisation that ha sstruck at them, they will be more inclined to strike back correctly. The Order of Quiet Eyes has recently been printing and circulating pamphlets describing the nature of the faith of Islam, and how it itself decries such actions as these. As always, information is the weapon with which we slay ignorance. Likewise, if those who are being targetted wrongly are willing to be patient and to work on their own to educate the communities they live in, the majority of people can be made to see the true nature of things. Little is accomplished alone that cannot be better accomplished by many.<P>And Silver, if you have questions, ask them. Others will ask if they have things to ask.<P>-Seldom
Knight of the Three Orders.<P>
"Lo, and the falling star was a tear shed by forever, a tear shed in sadness for those who had died before the swords of ignorance, and with its light was there crafted a shield, which we have named knowledge, and with it we will stand at the gates of Utopia and with its light shall we make all men equal and open and true before allowing them within..."
-Anonymous, Epics, Erewhon: I am Utopia Unbound.
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Postby Silver Adept on Tue Oct 30, 2001 4:51 am

Firing from the hip, as usual... <P>Another question, then? <P>How about this one... I just read a book called The Tao of Pooh... where some principles of Taoism were related to Winnie the Pooh. <P>There's another book about how the Simpsons actually have very deep philisophical stuff in all of their episodes. It's called The D'oh! of Homer. <P>What do you think about people trying to do things like these books? Does it cheapen things in any way... or is it good for people?
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Postby Seldom on Thu Nov 01, 2001 1:39 am

Interesting question, Silver... <P>In my honest opinion, nothing is created which is completely meaningless, therefore studying the meaning of a creation is inherently worthwhile. While purists may state that only "the original form" of some kind of wisdom is valid, I am inclined to disagree. I have learned as much from abject nonsense and daily koan as I have from the Tao de Tching or the Art of War. While satire, wit, and fiction can bend traditional wisdom, this does not always (or ever in some opinions) make that wisdom invalid. I am reminded immeadiately of the Daily Koan exercise proscribed in the Seven Circles of Truth manual i once read while waiting for a plane in denver. The book, while in and of itself a load of hogwash about racist relgious ideals and a "transcendant hate", I gleaned from it a few useful bits. One of them was their Daily Koan exercise. Theirs was a hideous thing, but the spirit of it is useful. The exercise suggests that at the end of each day, one should reflect back on the event which most immeadiately springs to mind, contemplate it in the fullness of calm and focus, and then assign to it a simple lesson one could easily tell to another. To this day I use this exercise, and then write down each day's koan as I lay down to rest. It gives me a sense of understanding my own life and the ability to look back and rediscover former solutions and ideas. This is, in theory, a similar exercise to the Tao of Piglet. Whether I am discussing Yin/Yang dualism, or the contradictory natures of the innocent but invincible Pooh and the cowardly but invincible Piglet, I am still discussing Symmetrical metaphysics. At heart, all wisdom is the same wisdom, its format simply make sit easier for some people to interact with. I know many people who would doze off reading The Art of War, but love the "Illustrated Sun Tzu", a comic book done by several artists illustrating in semi-comical style the lessons of Sun Tzu, complete with verbatim text.<P>-Seldom
Knight of the Three Orders.<P>"Your thought for the day is that I have not provided you with a thought for the day..."
-Darius, Reflections<P>"What have I learned today that is not what I have learned today? The things I have learned today are the culmination of the things I learned yesterday, but this I will not learn for many years."
-Darius, Memories<P>"Plus/Minus, Yin/Yang, Right/Wrong, Good/Evil, Light/Darkness... what are these things? They are not opposites, not opposing, violently clashing forces... unless you make them so. I prefer to see them as tranquil reflections, balancing forces whose interplay is subtle and silent and beautiful, making the world whole by its motion. You ask what the difference is? Honestly contemplate a world without evil for one day... and then return and I will tell you about "necessary evil" and "evils done to preserve the greater good", and then you may contemplate a world without evil again."
-Darius, Reflections.
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Postby Kanaeda Kuonji on Thu Nov 01, 2001 4:03 am

I have another question:<P>What of opposition? Does the kind of adversaries a person has play a role in their development, or does adversity play a role at all?<P>------------------
Rodney Dean, CI of the Order of the Knights of Jubal.<P>"The mystery of love is greater than the mystery of death." --Oscar Wilde<P>"Ardente veritate/Urite mala mundi. (Burn with truth/Scorch the world of evil.)"- Translated from "Liberi Fatali" theme of Final Fantasy 8<P>TCM Code: D++K++++Denise+++L+++ Bf--M----C++T++B+ Nem a--US
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Postby Silver Adept on Thu Nov 01, 2001 7:45 am

I feel a lot like the kid who always asks "Why?" to everything. Of course, it could just be that I'm in a natural curiosity stage. If I'm ever a burden, don't hesitate to tell me to shut up. <P>Let's see... random question for today is<P>Do the Knights of the Three Orders officially celebrate any holidays, in the sense of Christmas, Haloween, Labor Day, and things like that?
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Postby Seldom on Sat Nov 03, 2001 11:15 am

Silver:<P>No, actually... we are not closed holidays, nor do we celebrate any of the major or hallmark holidays as an organisation. We do, however, have numerous regular audiences and such which, I suppose, could me construed that way. A Knight is given a sash to wear on the anniversary of his Oath, as a commemoration of another year of service. Lords are given control of Council meetings on the day of their ascension, and other such timekeeping events. Each of the Orders also has a periodic event or requirement, such as Left Eye in Spring and Right Eye in Fall for the Quiet Eyes, which involve changes in duty and such. These are "holiday-esque" for us, as they are predicatble events by which we time our activities.<P>Kaneada;<P>"Adversity is growth. We do not change unless we are put upon to change by our peers, our evironment or our selves. If I live my entire life without challenge, I am no more than a child. But the instant something is expected of me, I must change in response, even if it is to become complacent by resisting active change. One could say we are in fact the sum of all obstacles."<P>-Darius, Conversations.<P>
What we fight is a choice for some, and not for others. Those born into starvation, harsh environments, or war are given no choice. Many of us, born in a more "civilized" setting, adapt first to our parents and their demands, and then to schools and peers and communities. Our growth is different because of the "difficulties" we face. While a child born and raised in an evironment of constant warfare, terror, and abominable living conditions will look at us and scoff at the softness of our lives, we are the sum of all the "obstacles" we have faced as much as he is, though our obstacles were things like tests, learning to drive, dating, money trouble, fights in hallways and choosing schoolwork over drugs or vice versa. He may be bitter and cold after his life, but so may we. Who is to judge which of us is more right in our reactions?<P>-Seldom
Knight of the Three Orders.<P>"You thought for the day is that you are reading the thoughts of a man who may have no right to be giving you things to think about..."
-Darius, Reflections<P>"What is duty, Darius, if you are so 'all-knowing'?"<P>"All-knowing? hmmm... if I were all-knowing I would be prepared to answer your question, now wouldn't I? But I am not, ask me later, when I have had time to think..."<P>-Darius, Conversations.<P>
"He never did ask me again... I suppose he must know all there is about duty then... "
-Darius, Memories.
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Postby Silver Adept on Sun Nov 04, 2001 12:44 pm

I see. <P>Actually, it's good to know that the Orders do celebrate the ascensions of their Knights. It would make someone have more confidence and solidify a year's worth of service. Of course, some people might get to the point where "it's just another sash", but that doesn't seem to be the case. <P>Questioning again: <P>Now that the focus appears to have shifted from planes to spores, I must inquire: <P>How long will this continue? I'm already contemplating a future where a bioterrorism attack is possible on any day of the week. America usually prides itself in not having those sorts of "gloomy" futures occuring. Will this be a solvable issue? Or has America unleashed Pandora's Box on themselves?
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Postby Ravidel Terrant on Mon Nov 05, 2001 4:23 am

Hello to a fello insomniac.
I am quite curious about your order. you have said that all are eligable. being a minority of a minority of a minority I find that hard to believe. I am willing to bet that some thought is spent on the racial backround in trainees, also that the majority of you are caucasian males. I am not implying that you don't have all kinds but that surely there are people whom you would never consider because their exsistance is a threat. I also am betting that the majority of the high ranking lords say 95% are white males. No problem with them but doesn't that say something about the admissions process?<P>this is all speculation of course but still There is no way that anyone is eligable for yyour orders. I do not mean to insult, just ask the question, are you so sure?<P>second, how far does your reach extend? or perhaps more the question, how much do you, or are you willing to do? If it comes to your attention that for instance the neighbors are sexualy, verbaly, and phisicly abusing their child will you do somethign about it? Is the concern of the order personal or more benifit-o'-th'-whole?<P>Also is their any training for these... red shields I belive they are? Is it mandatory to know some martial art or is it more action you do that's not phisicly demanding?<P>Insofar as I can tell your orders intentions are compleelly good, but if a lord told you to do somethign would you be required to do it? and what if this thing went against your morals? or what if you couldn't understand the purpose?<P>Im sorry if these questions sound demanding or insulting. My wording is not all that it should be this night.<P>-"I do not know if I can trust someone who relinquishes their sight and sees better for it." smile if you know where this is from.
-"there is allways an exception to the rules, that's the only thing that can be counted on" Morgan
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Postby Seldom on Mon Nov 05, 2001 11:16 am

Silver:<P>That I cannot say... The United States may have entered into a situation they cannot ever fully diffuse. Or, they may somehow defeat terrorism as its structures exist and find a brighter future. I cannot say.<P>Ravidel:<P>Thrilling, absolutely thrilling... ::grins:: No offense taken.<P>As per Testament and the Founding Charters of all three of our Orders, all people of sufficient will and demonstrable character are welcome to seek the mantle of knighthood. It is in fact, expressly forbidden to enact any change in training or judgement based on religious, racial or regional backgrounds. As for statistics;<P>Of our current Council of Lords, 5 are white males. I myself not being a white male, understand at least on some small level the motivation of said questions. By definition, a majority is 54% or more... Our current membership boasts fewer than 40% caucasian male control. We have a large number of women, 7 of them Lords out of a total of 21 Lords. The other 9 seats are occupied mostly by 'minorities'. The man who sits on my right is an asian-american, and the women on my right is a Nigerian immigrant.
As I mentioned before, my former partner was a third generation Israeli immigrant, Islamic, and a fine man. The Order of which I am now partially in control is 23% African American, and only 24% Caucasian American. It also includes natives of Africa, natives of Central and South America and the Caribbean Islands, and many other 'minorities'.<P>So yes, my friend; I am as sure as I can be. I have seen Knights removed and dismissed indefinitely for racism of any kind. "We are all here to serve a better future." That is the soul of our Orders.<P>
As for reach, Individual Knights are given leeway to deal with their situation as they see fit, within the bounds of appropriate behavior. I have Knights on six continents, in over 400 countries, and that is in my Order alone. The Quiet Eyes are primarily located in North America, for functional reasons, and the Merciful Truth are a bit more sparse than my Silent Shields, but are as spread out. As for your hypothetical situation, such a situation would require a Knight to act, unquestionably. We are serving the creation of a better future, but we do so thru the betterment of the present day. <P>And, as for your last question, regarding training of the Silent Shields; The Order offers training both for physical fitness and for martial ability, but neither are mandatory. By and large, the Silent Shields are the most physically fit and active of the Orders, as we are by and large the grunts and movers as well as the neighborhood watch types and 'vigilantes' when such things become necessary. If one wants work which is less demanding, we are still glad of your help and will find you something to do. We will also direct Pages with a distaste for physical activity to the other Orders. Quiet Eyes are often desk jockeys, and Merciful Truth are teachers and researchers and such.<P>All three Orders offer training of various forms, and reward those who both attend and master the curriculums, usually with rank, but for those who are content to be useful at the level they stand at, we would never seek to belittle or bemoan them. They are the meat and drink of our Orders.<P>As for Moral standpoint. There is no military command structure in the Orders. I do not give orders. I tell the regional leaders what I know that helps with the things they're working on. While I can dictate policy, assuming the Other Lords of the Silent Shields agree, I do not control the Knights below me, unless they volunteer into my service. Knights are not soldiers. Knights are men and women of free will and high character who we recruit because they can be trusted to act as is appropriate when asked to deal with a situation. I do not tell the Chicago Three Four Cell to go downtown and feed homeless people, they send me the initiative and I arrange for them to be supplied with what I can give them to help their efforts. Knights are self-motivated in the Orders, the only thing the structure of the Orders provides them with is supplies, backup, and informational support. Rank is useful, because when a Lord says, "we should do something about..." more people listen because they know the Lord worked his way up to that position because of his actions and choices. So, as such, no, you would never be required to do as a Lord told you, unless it bounded within very rare circumstances, and as such no moral conflict should ever arise. If another Knight or a Lord is acting in a manner you find morally repugnant, you may lodge a complaint and his/her actions will be investigated for inappropriate behavior. <P>I hope that is a satisfactory set of replies to you, Ravidel. If I may ask you one, you claimed minority status to an extreme, may I ask what concoction of bloodlines could make you so far out from the 'mainstream'? As a minority myself, I would be interested to know.<P>-Seldom
Knight of the Three Orders.<P>"What do you mean, "men, women and all other peoples of humanity concerned with the betterment of our world and the life within it.." includes them..!?"
-Teral, former Lord of Silent Shields, removed, struck from Ranks.<P>"May men, women, and all other peoples of humanity concerned with the betterment of our world and the life within it be welcome within our Orders, provided they are of sufficient will and demonstrable character, and can maintain the statement of actions and conduct held within their Order's Charter."
-Testament
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Postby Silver Adept on Tue Nov 06, 2001 8:59 am

Yet again, a stellar set of answers. And a challenge to my thinking patterns. I find that I still have something that could very well be worth removing from my thought patterns. Suffice to say, I though you were something that you are not. <P>And I'll leave it at that. <P>Next question, once again likely to fly wide of the mark of a good one, but asking anyway...<P>Personally, do you believe it possible for every religion to be "correct" in describing what Deity is? Or must one religion be "right" and the others "wrong"? (Bad terminology, I think, but I curse my inability to express myself properly than the words that I use...) <P>I've wondered a lot about the exclusionary attitudes of many monotheistic religions. I guess I'm asking if there is some way to reconcile the differences between them and the polytheists, or even between the monotheists themselves... to find out of all the descriptions and arguments, whether or not something can be pieced together which doesn't conflict with any of them. <P>It's likely grasping at clouds, but I wonder if it is possible.
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Postby Seldom on Wed Nov 07, 2001 1:53 am

Ahhh, the nature of faith, just like my days at Forum. There is a great power in man, and that it Faith. Man is capable of believing in a force or concept without any form of evidence or support. man is even capable of having such belief in the improvable that they may style their entire lives and values after something or someone they may never define. But, Man is also arrogant and once given a belief to follow, must in their own minds be certain that their belief is correct, lest their faith crack, and shake and tumble down. This leads to the ancient and much discussed question; "Who's right?"<P>I am. at least, from my perspective. And so are the Lutherans, and the Pagans, and the Agnostics and the Atheists. from their perspectives. That is the key. Man can never perceive the world without doing so from a perspective, and perspective is limiting. From the perspective of any one person or one group, the world is immutably seen from their world view.<P>So, the problem is, I must believe that what I believe is correct. If what I believe is correct, then what you believe cannot be, becaus eour beliefs are contradictory, or even competitive. From my standpoint, I cannot see the merit of your belief over mine, because I cannot see from your standpoint. The reverse is also true.<P>This thinking is what prevents polite discourse between the religious in most circles. I am of a different opinion all together. I have a bit of Nietzchian philosophy and a lot of East Asian theology and philosophy crammed together with my training as a Knight, which teaches that any person may succeed at any task, assuming sufficient preparation and effort.<P>When I combine all of these things, I am provided with a simple view. All faith is the same faith. While I believe in a Gaian Totemic structure, and he believes in J.R. Bob Dobbs, Grand High Epoch of the Church of the Subgenius, we believe the same things. I have faith because it gives me strength and definition, it explains the things I cannot and it provides me with hope and warmth when I have none. Faith serves the same purpose is all faithful people. Therefore, if I believe in Gaia, and you believe in God, and when we pray in our ways, we both feel stronger and more self-assured for our knowledge, who's to say we're not both right?<P>Faith is a personal force. Something any being can have and channel. The structure is meaningless outside the individual faithful's eyes. The names and places and times and dates are meaningless outside of the individual faithful's eyes. The key is that the faithful believe. They make themselves stronger by their belief and that is the true meaning of faith.<P>One might even say that Faith is the penultimate channeling of personal potential. In the same way that martial arts, meditation, and other forms of focus allow actions the uninitiated would call 'impossible', faith, in whatever form is takes allows the faithful to enact changes in themselves and the environment that would be otherwise 'impossible'.<P>I do not believe in gods, or Deity, or any of that, because I have seen Divinity floating in the eyes of the Faithful. It is not the godhead of belief that makes this light, but the belief itself. <P>
I have gotten a bit ranty here, I hope it is coherent. Enjoy.<P>-Seldom
Knight of the Three Orders.<P>"Faith is the human ability to empower oneself through constructive application of willpower, trust, and a part of the mind and soul we keep for just such absurd occaisions... the imagination."
-Darius, Reflections.
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Postby Kanaeda Kuonji on Wed Nov 07, 2001 4:05 am

I have another question:<P>How should one confront a religious leader who has, to be blunt, crossed the line? I fear I may have to confront such an individual in the future, and wish to be ready if and when it happens.<P>There are some who advocate attacks on any faith outside theirs. And there are those, such as Jack Chick (go to Chick.com to see what I mean) who go so far as to slander faiths without ever bothering to do proper research outside the Bible, which has been reinterpreted so many times, I have to question it's reliability on some matters.<P>I suppose research and counterpoint is in order if I expect to have any hope. But I'd like to hear your thoughts on this.<P>------------------
Rodney Dean, CI of the Order of the Knights of Jubal.<P>"The mystery of love is greater than the mystery of death." --Oscar Wilde<P>"Ardente veritate/Urite mala mundi. (Burn with truth/Scorch the world of evil.)"- Translated from "Liberi Fatali" theme of Final Fantasy 8<P>TCM Code: D++K++++Denise+++L+++ Bf--M----C++T++B+ Nem a--US
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Postby Seldom on Thu Nov 08, 2001 1:18 am

That's rough. Leaders of religious groups are reliably the hardest to shake and the most certain of their convictions. To dissuade a person from acting on what they feel is the righteous course is extremely difficult. Knowledge and a quick wit are your best allies, but so are other people. While one person may have no chance of stemming the tide of ignorant aggression, a movement can, and a community can quite quickly. If someone has gone too far, poke around and find others who think so too. Get them to join you in finding more and bringing your adversary's actions to more open-minded light. If enough people join the movement to oppose such actions, a reckoning will occur, and something will be done. It is our primary tactic in removing figures of public standing who are wroking against public safety, security and peace. If the figure loses their ability to convince the public of his or her extreme or inappropriate views, he or she can no longer damage public welfare.<P>So, good research, good preparation, and good backup are my best advise. Good luck.<P>-Seldom
Knight of the Three Orders.<P>"When all the priests are shown to have their hands in the blood of their followers, and all the senators in Rome are dancing in the burning forum, then will the truth of the Knighthood be laid before us, and then will we be given a choice... save what can be saved and make our world again, or turn aside from duty and rest forever."
-Anonymous, Epics, Of The Ashen Times.
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