The Discourse

Don't ask
4 min readMar 7, 2020

I did not plan to publish this year but I think this is important.

The Discourse is an idea. A simple, testable idea: the things that separate us are not as strong as the things that bind us.

I would like to test this idea.

What?

So what is The Discourse?

The Discourse is a safe space for meaningful conversations about the things that affect us and that we care about. This non-exhaustive list includes: Relationships, morality and purpose, meaning, love, wealth and health. I know that we all have different religious beliefs and also different worldviews (even within the same faith), this is an attempt to get people from these different religious beliefs and worldviews to come together in a safe, no-judgment space to talk about anything.

An example: If the topic of the day is relationships and someone from one religion would like to talk about relationships within the framework of that religion [from their perspective], that is perfectly okay. Someone else from another religion can also contribute their views [based on their own worldviews] as well. The essence of this is for those in the group to have a space to discuss issues that bother them and gain insight they might not have had on their own. This is why safety and honesty are important.

Why?

I feel like organized religion has restricted the way we have conversations and has tightened the noose around having these conversations across the aisle. I want this to be a safe space away from judgement where honesty and respect can flow unhindered.

How?

Right now, there are two options: Virtual and Physical. This is an experimental version and there will only be these two groups . Each group will contain TEN [10] people only. I will be as transparent in selecting participants as possible and I will be open to answering any and all questions.

Some people would like to be anonymous, they value privacy and are not necessarily willing to be open to everyone. Others might just not be close to the physical location. Either way, that is what the virtual option is for. We will use Discord (a messaging app) to organize both groups. The reason I have chosen Discord is because there is no need for a phone number, so people will be completely anonymous unless they choose to be otherwise. Once you have been selected, I will send you a link to the Discord group chat (please download the app now) and we will go on from there.

The Hybrid option is for people who would prefer to have these conversations that lead to an in-person conversation and are not necessarily worried about anonymity. Hybrid meetups will be once a month for a few months (3–6 months) and the first meetup is at the end of this month (March 28th). Meetup location options will be communicated to everyone after the group is complete and the preferred option will be for relatively quiet and affordable spaces. I will certainly accommodate everyone’s availability as much as I can [meetup dates are flexible to a certain extent].

The hybrid and virtual version will run for 3 months (physical version will have 3 physical meetings]

To download Discord, you can use the links below:

Discord for iOS

Discord for Android

Discord for PC and Mac

Rules

The nature of The Discourse demands ABSOLUTE respect and disrespectful people will be ejected immediately.

  • Due to the different people who will participate in this group, opinions will vary greatly. Every opinion can (and will) be challenged.
  • What matters in challenging an opinion is that the holder of opinion is treated with respect even though the opinion itself is being dissected.
  • By participating in this group, you accept that your opinions will be open to scrutiny. The curator will always come to the aid of anyone who is overwhelmed by this but the curator is obligated to be on the side of objective truth at all times.
  • The curator is clearly not beyond correction and welcomes any and all correction.
  • Interruptions are not acceptable. Let the speaker finish their thought before interrupting. Instead of interrupting someone who is speaking, take notes, write your thoughts down so you do not forget but, as much as possible, allow people to complete their thoughts.

Accompanying rules will be communicated to every group once participants are complete. If there are any rules here that you have an issue with (or there are rules you would like instituted, please let me know).

My twitter handle is: https://twitter.com/TheEkwensu

If you are interested in this, please fill the form below:

https://visionrepublic.typeform.com/to/QIJNd0 [click link]

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