What is The Sand Box? Who is Speculum?

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What is The Sand Box? Who is Speculum?

Postby zoofence » March 28th, 2005, 3:51 am

If you have read Open Forum’s “Welcome” message, then you already know about “The Sand Box”, and you do not need to read this message. But if you did not read the Welcome message, then please read this.

The Zoo Fence’s Open Forum includes one feature, called “The Sand Box”, that was originally visible only to those members who wished to have access to it. That is, in order to have access to “The Sand Box” you needed to write us and specifically ask for access.

The reason we created “The Sand Box” is that some discussions in the forum’s “General Discussion” area (which is where you are now) seemed to us to be getting into areas that questioned some of the articles of faith underlying existing religions and traditions. Although those kinds of issues are perfectly legitimate subjects for consideration and discussion in a space like TZF’s Open Forum, we became uncomfortable having them appear in such an exposed manner on The Zoo Fence. That is, it is important that lots of visitors on many different paths living in many different countries and cultures feel comfortable browsing The Zoo Fence website freely, without concern that at any moment and without warning they may come across something that may be offensive to their faith. So, we created "The Sand Box" where those kinds of discussions can take place, but they will be visible only to those who have expressed an interest in reading them and/or participating in them.

However, as I came to the position where I am no longer as actively present on The Zoo Fence (for more about that, please see here), and therefore not always available to manage membership in The Sand Box, I needed to decide whether (1) to delete The Sand Box altogether or (2) to open it to public view. I have chosen the latter because there is a lot of good stuff there, and I cannot bring myself to erase it.

To those who may be offended by some of the material in The Sand Box, I apologize. If you feel you may be in that category, I urge you not to read the stuff there.

Also, you may wish to know that I have an additional username besides “zoofence”. It is “speculum” (Latin for mirror). The difference between them is that I use “speculum” when I am expressing what is clearly my own personal opinion and "zoofence" when I am expressing what is the perspective of The Zoo Fence generally or institutionally. I fully realize that the line between the two is fuzzy; but then, in an illusional dual universe what line isn't fuzzy? To assist visitors in recognizing that zoofence and speculum are really two faces of me, I use the same “avatar” character for both (the avatar character is the graphic that appears next to a poster's name -- you can select your own avatar by logging on, and then clicking on Profile, and then scrolling near to the bottom of the Profile page).

Thanks ... and once again, welcome to Open Forum at The Zoo Fence.


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