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Thread: Our discussions on HDF: your assessment?

  1. #1
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    Our discussions on HDF: your assessment?

    Hari Om
    ~~~~~

    Namaskr,

    I was just pondering the overall contributions from the folks on HDF.
    According to the numbers there are ~ 224 people that have signed
    up for this site.
    When I look at the number of people that post on a some what regular
    basis, I count 10 , or ~ 4.5% of the 'members'.

    This has me thinking:
    1. Are the posts interesting and invokes participation?
    2. Are they ( the posts) too shallow in thinking or too esoteric?
    3. Are they contempory and relevent?


    Why do I mention this? Do we think 4% participation is about right for diversity and issues of thought? I am sure there is no 'quota' in this yet diverse and meaningful thought is rewarding to the readers.

    That said, are we hitting the interest mark? What more ( or less) would one want to discuss? I have seen posts from tatoo's to rock music all the way to the sublime of bhaki, siddhi, and the like.


    Are we missing anything that anyone (you) would like HDF to address that fits into the genre of HDF?
    Last edited by yajvan; 14 March 2007 at 11:58 AM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  2. #2
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    Re: Our discussions on HDF: your assessment?

    Namaste Yajvan,

    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan
    When I look at the number of people that post on a some what regular
    basis, I count 10 , or ~ 4.5% of the 'members'.
    Yes, the participation level is one of concern; seems it has come down in the absence of Sarabhanga, though equally or even more weighty topics are being discussed now. The number 10 as the count of regular participants is much less than what it used to be.

    What about the viewing levels? Assuming that one who hits a post reads it, do we have stats of the viewing levels per thread, per post, per person? In any forum around 50% of the members are normally just lurking, though they may be reading most of the posts.

    One reason could be the lack of familiarity with the scriptural texts that are extensively quoted (I am in this category, though I manage to look up where a quote appeals to me and try to say something relevant as my part of contribution). Scriptural text is quoted in context in the posts, and this is a must because we discuss things in the Hindu perspective. Some guidelines given by well-read members as to the best way of going about reading the scriptures, but since our scriptures are so vast, varied and deep, it takes time even to get familiar with them. Perhaps the well-read like you might think about giving a synopsis of the essence of the major scriptures with their popular quotes.

    Another area of expansion may be in discussing more of applied spirituality such as yoga, meditation, asanas, pujas, rituals and the like, with members experiences, problems and suggestions. We might discuss, for example, a single mantra (from the single-lettered Aum to the mahavakhyas) with focus on its words, meaning and application at different levels: physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual.

    Since science and technology rules the roost in today's world, we might discuss their spiritual implications, expanding the discussion to their ancient counterparts and possible alternatives for a better life today.

    I would also like to learn about the life and education, as it was in ancient India vis-à-vis the pre-Muslim and pre-British and modern India.

    A Quiz Forum

    We might also have an exclusive forum on quiz about Hinduism and history of Bharat. The quiz idea should be implemented to increase participation level of the members. First we need to have a panel of well-read members who can develop and publish the syllabus (with discussions in the forum). Next we might invite everyone to contribute questions by private mail to the panel members, who would edit and select them and add them to their own collections. Questions must be objective and might be of four types: logical (true or false), objective (two or more choices), fill-up (a missing phrase or word) and match-it (matching numbered options to their lettered choices, such as 1b2c3a and filling up a text box with this answer).

    Once the quiz bank (the questions database) has 5,000 or more questions, it can be opened for individual attempts. It won't be a competitive quiz showtime here, but only a personal accomplishment for every individual. My target would be get the right answers to all the questions, and since the quiz bank will be expanding, I will be chasing a moving target! My KQ (knowledge quotient) will be the count of rightly answered questions I accumulate.

    The software that implements the management of the Quiz Time and Quiz Bank should take care to record the count and id of each member's rightly answered questions, so they are not asked for him/her the next time. Questions could be displayed in a random manner and for a specified time, say ten or fifteen minutes. Each question will have a time to answer and if answered earlier the leftover time will be carried over the next one. If a question is answered later than the allotted time, the excess time will be deducted from the time of the next questions. Thus in a session of 10 minutes, there might be 10 to 15 questions with individual times ranging from 30 to 60 seconds.

    I can prepare a write-up of specifications on what the software would need to cater to. If Satay and other members agree to the idea, we can discuss how to implement it, whether as a separate database-driven Website or within the context of HDF (as a sub-forum).

    A professionally-designed Quiz Bank that caters to many levels (novice, advanced, expert) and audiences (students, householders, seekers) could go a long way in furthering our familiarity with our religion, its scriptures and the country where they originated and flourished.
    Last edited by saidevo; 15 March 2007 at 10:23 AM.

  3. #3
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    Re: Our discussions on HDF: your assessment?

    Hari Om
    ~~~~~
    Quote Originally Posted by saidevo View Post
    Yes, the participation level is one of concern; seems it has come down in the absence of Sarabhanga, though equally or even more weighty topics are being discussed now. The number 10 as the count of regular participants is much less than what it used to be.

    One reason could be the lack of familiarity with the scriptural texts that are extensively quoted
    Namaste saidevo,
    you bring many good ideas i.e. quiz, scriptures within context, etc.
    Its key when we bring quotes that we explain them vs. cut 'n paste.
    the premise is Reading (something) does not insure comprehension and
    the jewels that are in that reading needs to be offered-up. So , this in my humble opinion needs to be standard fare for all scriptures used.
    Also, a discussion on a particular valli, sutra or paragraph can be a point of discussion for all to take a look and participate in offering an understanding.

    That said, perhaps it makes sense to get some add'l feedback from the HDF participants what is valuable to the reader... once we know this, we can offer options and solutions if warranted.

    We could have people that just prefer to read and not write...yet we want to have the enviroment that no-one is feeling uncomfortable in participating and questions, comments are welcomed.

    What are your (and others) thoughts on this?


    pranams,
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  4. #4
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    Re: Our discussions on HDF: your assessment?

    Namaste,
    I am a newbie and I am disappointed at the level of participation. I encourage people to ask questions about our dharma as well as answer with personal thought.

    I think a quiz is a fabulous idea. It should demonstrate knowledge of major as well as finer details including language.

    Maste Nam,
    Zardozi

  5. #5

    Re: Our discussions on HDF: your assessment?

    But I thought this forum is one of the most sane in the whole www.
    What is Here, is Elsewhere. What is not Here, is Nowhere.

  6. #6

    Re: Our discussions on HDF: your assessment?

    Namaste !,

    I am a newbie here and still figuring out what is where. The site is well structured but pardon me as it still taking time to figure out what is where.

    Once I get familiar with the threads and topics I will try to participate more actively.

    Few things I would like to add is a website like this should have a very clear navigation like one with easy and simple spiritual topics and discussion where all the newbie or curious mind to this interest are not afraid to participate or ask questions without having a fear of someone telling them "SILLY".

    Also you might want to add some more search keywords for google robots , etc so this website comes up on a simple keyword searches like yoga or ayurveda or veda..... as I have used google for my searched on vedas and other related quest not come across this website till day before yesterday.

    Overall am very much happy and interested with this website. Hope it will help me , guide me in my spiritual path of life.

    Hari OM !
    Brahma satyam jaganmithyaa jiivo brahma iva naaparah....

  7. #7
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    Re: Our discussions on HDF: your assessment?

    Pranam

    Quote Originally Posted by sm78 View Post
    But I thought this forum is one of the most sane in the whole www.
    Could not agree more.

    this forum is only young, give it some time.

    So how do we encourage more people to join in the positive discussions? I like to discuss how things are going in everyday life. Does anyone need support; has anyone had some insight related to Hindu Dharma. Would others like to see more of this?
    this is also a good idea from MG

    Jai Shree Krishna
    Rig Veda list only 33 devas, they are all propitiated, worthy off our worship, all other names of gods are derivative from this 33 originals,
    Bhagvat Gita; Shree Krishna says Chapter 3.11 devan bhavayatanena te deva bhavayantu vah parasparam bhavayantah sreyah param avapsyatha Chapter 17.4 yajante sattvika devan yaksa-raksamsi rajasah pretan bhuta-ganams canye yajante tamasa janah
    The world disappears in him. He is the peaceful, the good, the one without a second.

  8. #8
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    Re: Our discussions on HDF: your assessment?

    namaste all!

    Yajvan has started something very interesting here. I like everyone's feedback here.

    Yes, I agree that there is low participation, however, I would have to say that the quality of posts here on HDF are many times better than a number of forums. I am a member of several forums including forums from other religions. Some of these forums have several thousand members and millions of posts, however, most of the posts are chit chat and entertainment or recycled ideas.

    HDF is unique in that most knowledgeable members here value their words and put quite a bit of thought in thier posts.

    Also, we must remember that the forums is very young. In fact, it is almost strange that we have over ten thousand posts in one year. Most new forums die within the first year, especially if the participation is low.

    We can do two things -

    1. we can change the focus of the forum and make it more entertaining instead of more to the point of dharma. By that I mean, we could install games, chat rooms etc. which will attract younger crowd.

    2. or we can continue with the current focus and try to encourage the current members, try to increase visibility and rank in search engines, refer the site to others that we know etc.

    Another point is that when we started the forum (some of you know this), there were debates going on here that almost always became personal among members. We ended up redirecting those members out of HDF because the main purpose of this forum is 'positive presentation of hindu dharma' and not quarrelling among each other of finer points of the hindu theology.

    In conclusion, I would like to suggest that to us, the quality of posts should be more important to the quantity. Having said that though 4% participation is very low and we need to continue discussing ways to bring this participation level up.

    This is "our" forum. Let's make it what we want.
    satay

  9. #9

    Re: Our discussions on HDF: your assessment?

    Quote Originally Posted by MysticalGypsi View Post
    I like to discuss how things are going in everyday life. Does anyone need support; has anyone had some insight related to Hindu Dharma. Would others like to see more of this?
    I'll like that too.
    What is Here, is Elsewhere. What is not Here, is Nowhere.

  10. #10
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    Re: Our discussions on HDF: your assessment?

    Namaskars All,

    I agree overall with what other members here have been saying. The quality here is folds better than in other forums. I even like to believe that we are a teaching forum. Many times, Ive done a google search on some topic and come up with HDF pages, and the HDF posts were more informative and detailed than any other site!!

    That said, I do agree that the number of posters is low. However, before we arrive at percentages, I guess what we really have to see is how many active members there are. Just because the forum has 225 members doesnt mean they are all active or visit on a regular basis. My guess is only a fraction of that number visit regularly.

    Anyway, I have a hunch that since this forum has a larger percentage of knowledgeable members, people who may not be so knowledgeable feel a little intimidated to post their thoughts and opinions on a given subject. However, that should NOT be the case.

    What can we do so that everyone will feel comfortable posting their opinions and questions? Are our responses too long, too detailed, too technical, is there too much Sanskrit, impractical? Some constructive criticism from newbies would be nice.

    Could we maybe also have a subforum just for basic questions on any aspect of Hindu Dharma (what one may feel are dumb questions theres really no such thing)? And the responders should answer very succinctly without use of too many fancy terms? Do y'all think that will be helpful especially to newcomers? Just a passing thought

    I also like MGs idea where a person could speak of some practical issue in their life and ask for advice/opinions from a Hindu perspective.

    OM Shanti,
    A.



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