Consider respect

Jahanshah Javid
by Jahanshah Javid

In response to jimzbund's "Nothing is sacred?" and the many who left comments: Thank you for the vigorous debate! Here are some of my thoughts:

* Refrain from using vulgarity or aggressive, threatening language. SOMETIMES we cannot avoid using a four-letter word here and there, and obviously many posts on this site can make enrage one group or another. But the purpose here is to have a dialogue among ourselves. WE THE PEOPLE. And WE come in various colors and beliefs. We must learn to COMMUNICATE our views without trashing everything about another human being that simply has a different view than ours.

* Instead of attacking authors, tackle the issues presented in their writings.

* You cannot call authors or posters mercenaries, agents of the CIA or the IRI or whatever. Be more imaginative.

* Don't take a detour to Karbala! Stick to the topic of the page.

* Do not copy-paste entire articles as comments. Instead please give the title, author, source and the link of the article you want people to read.

These are all general guidelines. Sometimes harsh, vulgar, threatening, stupid, racist comments do get published. But these are only exceptions.

There are no absolute rules for moderating comments. Editors are all human and they have to make subjective decisions.

We are all doing our best to preserve an atmosphere that encourages civil debate and discussion.

Those of you who got deleted or edited, I'm sorry. I may go too far sometimes. I know I do. But this is a two-way street. You should also look at some of your comments and rethink the way you respond to your opponents or just other human beings.

Let's each of us try to be the bigger, better person. Let's show respect.

Che meedoonam... I really don't have the answer.



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"What is SACRED" you ask?

by Iraniam (not verified) on

Nothing is Sacred in thi world BUT that does not give me THE RIGHT to step on other people's LIFE and HEART.

Why can't we understand that my freedom ends where I step into limitting someone else's freedom or trashing someone else's RIGHT.

Not just religious people take things religiously. Teenagers who go bzirk and start shooting in the school for a reason. Or, serial killers who have some atheist belief DO NOT consider anything is SACRED. The common denominator for human catastrophe is SELFISHNESS and it is based on judgement and irrational justification.

"NOTHING IS SACRED" is a natural response to being totally FREE and irresponsible in the age of loss of innosence.

So, "WHAT IS SACRED"? Well, it is the most stupid, irrational and self-defying term I have ever heard. NOTHING IS SACRED, but at the same time, EVERYTHING IS SACRED with a varying degree. Because , everything is there for a purpose, therefore it has some perceived value, relatively speaking.


Rosie T.

Here's a thought jj

by Rosie T. on

Samavar is a genius, you should hire HIM to clean your septic tank.  He is right.  The spellcheck is the most important thing to do technically on this website.  The rest can wait. 


Sorry for posting so much/  Lhamoosh


In defense of JJ

by Anonymous-this (not verified) on

Reverence, veneration and all the other terms associated with sacred or sacredness have developed in connection with the concept of divine through the pre-modern era and into the modernity. The secularization of these terms makes sense only in this context. So JJ's interpretation is on the nose in terms of nothing is off the table when it comes to rational conversation.

Rosie T.


by Rosie T. on

If a person maintains that nothing is sacred, meaning nothing is absolute, and the person has also maintained that beyond this, human life and free speech are exceptions and are in fact sacred, and uses respect as the sole criterion possible-- although itself necessarily not an absolute and therefore open to interpretation--to determine the parameters of free speech which support the communication necessary for human life to flourish--and by extension all life on the planet of which those humans are now master--then it must be assumed that respect is the most sacred of all.  For without it no discourse is possible and hence no life.

I don't want to debate this It's all just a bunch of words. Sillogysms.  Linguistic games.  Respect, communication, life, truth (that is honesty in approaching truth), love, all of these things are sacred and none can be defined.

JJ, do you know what's going on with Soraya's article and Haha's blog?


Is all art sacred?

by Anonymous-today (not verified) on

How about Leni Riefenstahl Olympia? Or Celine's Journey to the End of the Night? In my view they are both works of art but there are many who don't share that view because of in Riefenstahl 's case it being commissioned by the Nazi Party and in Celine's case because he was a vocal anti-smite. Let's not mix up art with sacredness. Art is a human and social activity and has nothing to do with divine-ness literally or metaphorically.



by Gonjeeshk (not verified) on

I try to make it short and sweet.

- This site like any other facet of human life needs some rules.

- Democracy is based on voices of all not will of some.

- My democracy should not be at the expense of yours, and vice versa.

- There are things and people who are sacred in anyone's life; something or someone who you have the ultimate respect for, whether it's your religion, your mother, your believes, your freedom, your wealth, or whatever.

- Are you obligated to respect things/people sacred to others? No, but be receptive of others trashing yours.

- is definitely open and diverse. Is it perfect? Of course not!

- Is the motto/slogan of "Nothing is Sacred" valid/appropriate? No, because it violates the rules that JJ is rightfully trying to establish for his site.

JJ, it's sometimes ok to be open to valid criticism. It has a more positive effect on you and your audience to be humble and receptive to the views that you don't like than trying to make sense out of nonsense stubbornly.

With all my respect,



Wrong, JJ

by Killjoy (not verified) on

One of the meanings of "sacred" is "revered" or "venerated."


JJ I disagree with you!

by Anonym7 (not verified) on

JJ says: "Anyway... kheyli zer zadam and I'm sure half of it didn't make any sense. But one thing I'm perfectly sure of: you won't find another Iranian site as diverse and open and welcoming as this one. If there is one, show me. If there isn't, I challenge you to go and start one and teach all of us a good lesson in free speech."

Hey JJ, I disagree with first half of your first sentence in this paragraph but I DO agree with rest of it.

Rosie T.

Sam, Marketing Director, moi? / Site suggestions

by Rosie T. on

Sam, JJ employs me to clean his septic tank.

But seriously, JJ, I've said before that it is very important for the site to update the FAQ's and have an area called How this Site Works PROMINENTLY displayed. ANd that it is VERY important to have a snail address in the Contact Us. It looks unprofessional not to, and also people must want to use one, e.g. to send in donatons by check after the benefit.  I myself have wanted to send cn donations, Christmas cards,, letter-bombs, and self-improvemt books.  Finally while there are much fewer glitches than before in composing posts and blogs, there are still problems with losing all your line spacings and having to redo them.

Most important for now, since we already started it on Jimz's blog, it would be good to get those RULES for the SYSTEM of moderation.  (what to do if you have an unfair deletion, etc.) IF you want, jj, I'll hammer out a laundry list of about twenty actual and suggested, which you can refine with your "five or six" senior editors (no I'm not and I don't want to be), People have been asking for this for a LOOOOOOOOOONG time.  We were supposed to start one in January but somehow we never got around to it.

PS  Sacred, shmacred. That was lovely, jj.  And  the Guidelines are good /  BUt I want to know how we can get a list of Benefits of Registration Rules of Moderation, and the New Guidelines and REVISED FAQs under a BRIGHT, BIG, FAT button PROMINENTLY displayed on the homepage called "How This Site Works".

Jahanshah Javid

Nobody does it better ;o)

by Jahanshah Javid on

To those who see a contradiction in deleting comments and the site's motto "Nothing is sacred", I'll try to explain, but I already know I will not be very clear. I don't really know what I'm saying or doing. I go back and forth every week. Most of you are a lot of smarter than me, so I'm not going to make a lot of sense here. You will find plenty of holes in my argument. But whatever deegeh... :o)

"Nothing is sacred" is a slogan, an absolute idea. And it was picked in direct response to censorship in Iran and whatever the Islamic Republic suppresses in the name of god.

Religious leaders say god, Islam, the Koran, the prophet, the Imams are sacred and therefore the ayatollahs are sacred and therefore the Islamic Republic is sacred and therefore challenging the theocracy means challenging god himself and therefore the offender must be punished or her rights taken away.

So's slogan is a response to that, more than anything else.

In addition, my general view is that in fact nothing in this universe can be shielded from questioning or criticism under the guise of being "sacred" or "divine".

Life is sacred. But in the realm of expression, there's nothing that can be banned or criminalized, other than those that directly harm children or slander.

Now you ask, if "nothing is sacred" then why do some comments get deleted? Or if "nothing is sacred" why don't all submitted articles get published?

Well, I don't know. The best answer I can give is that we are trying to balance an absolute idea with the desire to have civil or peaceful environment where we can practice free speech while respecting our opponent at the same time.

At some point we have to realize that name-calling, slander, accusations, threats and virtual screaming do not highlight one's intelligence. What is so difficult about saying someone is wrong because of this and this and this reason, rather than accusing the authors of being agents of the Islamic Republic or the United States?

So in the interest of civility and sanity, comments containing personal attacks, slander, vulgarity and general hostility will be deleted.

Does that break the "nothing is sacred" rule? Well yes. There's nothing inherently wrong or criminal about personal attacks, digital anger or vulgarity. But if the main objectives include exchanging ideas, learning from our collective minds and tolerating each other, then we have to attack ideas not individuals.

Anyway... kheyli zer zadam and I'm sure half of it didn't make any sense. But one thing I'm perfectly sure of: you won't find another Iranian site as diverse and open and welcoming as this one. If there is one, show me. If there isn't, I challenge you to go and start one and teach all of us a good lesson in free speech.


Dear Rosie

by Samavar on

Thanks a million for your detailed and I am sure time consuming reply to my question. JJ should appoint you as the Director of Marketing for Your reply to my simple question is worth a thousand congratulatory comments - no offence to the congratulators! I am really overwhlemed by the number of things one can do when registered. Thanks aagin to both yourself for informing me and to JJ for providing us with such facilities.

There  is only one minor thing that I was wondering if I could request: A spell checker? I know may be I am asking for too much but I am a stickler for correct spelling and it takes much time to go back and forth over my text to pick up misspelt words. The alternative is to use my word processor to compose my text and then have it cut and pasted in the Comment area. But does it take so much to add a simple spell checker to this editor?

Rosie T.


by Rosie T. on

Samavar!  Welcome to the merry world of registration!

The benefits of registration are:

you get to edit your own posts as long as no one has replied to them by using the reply button beneath your post

yu get to flag other posts as offensive for deletion

yu can submit articles and blogs

getting on-site is actually easier because unless you log out, you are always on-site by just clicking on the "my account" in ULH corner

you get your own little "room" on the website whick people in the know can go to by clicking on your blue user's name above your post or by clicking the contributors button at the bottom of the home page., you by can go to by clicking on "My account" in the upper left hand corner of the site

In that rooom they and you will find

your bio and personal data as you choose to disclose or not

a contact button which those in the know can click on and send you an e-mail off-site without disclosing your e-mail address

a list of all your blogs and articles for easy access

a wonderful tracking system where you can monitor the threads you're on and see if there are new posts so you don't have to waste time looking for those threads.  Others can also visit your room and find every single thing you've ever written as you can, theirs

A great thing about the tracking system is that even if a thread is very OLD and someone replies to it, you will know

There WAS a cute little feature too where you got to see who else was on-line while you were which I found to be lots of fun, and the number of registered and non-registered users on-line which I found very useful to know the website pattern of activity.  Unfortunately a couple of days ago SOMEONE decided to remove this, much to my despair

In my opinion the most significant benefit of registration is that you establish a cyberidentity which is now protected.  You are SAMAVAR now and no one can steal your name and pretend to be you, which believe it or not, some idiots like to do.  They can do things like modify your name slightly by say adding a period but then they will appear UNREGISTERED and the regular blogging community will immediately know it isn't you

THAT IS WHY IT IS EXTREMELY IMPORTANT FOR ALL REGISTERED USERS TO ALWAYS POST REGISTERED, because if you sometimes post unregistered, you don't have that clear identity anymore.

That's off the top of my head.  If anyone else can think of anything or correct me, please add on.


Not quite Q

by EDS on

This is why I stated that respect as JJ defines for this site as opposed to respect as an imprecise general term. Such is sacred on this site because if you violate it in your post then it is deleted.

It is quite easy to show that nothing is sacred is a false statement, as others have done here. However a longer logically consistent statement is just not going to sound as catchy. This is good enough.

Further, there is no reason to fall in love with a slogan in any case, to try to twist and turn to make it true.

Rather what is important is action. The question is if the idea of deleting disrespectful comments is bad. No it isn't. And the reason is not because insulting should be banned in society and what not, but because this site belongs to JJ and a few investors. They ultimately can, do, and will do as they please. Those who wish to do otherwise, can create their own site and follow their own rules. Just that they will have to compete in gathering audiance with JJ and a million others.


How about this?

by Samavar on

Hi everyone, as I think my question to JJ on a different thread (Bloggers Tips) may  have triggered this debate, I thought to register properly and benefit from the privilges (?) made available to the registered users.

My question from you and JJ is this: Can we criticize the Iranian of the Day or this is a no-go area? In other words, without being rude, profane, or accusatory, if one finds the person chosen as the Iranian of the Day is worthy of being criticized for perhaps his or her views, writings, dress code, behaviour, etc. can they write a critical comment? Or is Iranian of the Day only reserved for congratulatory comments? I thought Iranian of the Day is chosen nearly on the same principles as the TIME magazine's man/woman of the year is chosen i.e. someone who is making news regardless of the news being good or bad. So if we can congratulate some, we should be able to criticize someas well, shouldn't we?


The title is

by Anonymous45 (not verified) on

The title is :--------"Consider respect"

"Respect" is "Sacred"!

Rosie T.

Actually, I read not long ago, Fearless Leader and Troops PS JJ

by Rosie T. on

that the original etymology of sacred in Persian was the same as stone.  I believe it must have been because of the statues of the gods and goddesses but I think it is also to remind us that nothing is etched in STONE.  The French word "sang" means BLOOD and I would rather the Persian sang be related to blood than to stone but unfortunately there's no etymological relationship. Nor should there be really, because as you well know, you can't get BLOOD from a STONE.

 What I really am trying to say is:  now that we have a good set of guidelines and our fearless leader's attention, why don't you ask specific and tangible questons about your concerns with the WORKINGS of the site and how to IMPROVE it.  Sacred schmacred who cares?  It's just there like the goldfish, because it's cute!  That's all  Doesn't mean a damn thing at all. Means everything and nothing, cancels out to zero.

PS JJ You never DID reply as to whether articles on spirituality and from dogmatic religious people are as acceptable as say, photo essays of Disneyland and blogs about your experiences with Viagra.  I'll just assume silence is consent.  Khamoosh


Something is not Sacred

by jimzbund on

 Dear all,

If Nothing IS sacred then Something IS NOT sacred !

 Putting philosophy aside, I believe that as a result of this discussion we have more understanding and respect for each other and the Thanks to all especially JJ , Rosie , Shadan and many others who put things in perspective .

Respectfully , !

Bund, Jimz Bund

Jahanshah Javid

Sacred one by one

by Jahanshah Javid on


You found these definitions for sacred. Let's go through them all:

-- "Of or relating to religious objects, rites, or practices."

All of the above can be challenged, questioned or made fun of, even if religious leaders and followers cosnider it "offensive" to their sacred beliefs.

- "Worthy of respect; venerable."

Like what? Give the name of a thing or person, dead or alive, who should not be challenged, questioned or made fun of? I don't know any.

- "Entitled to reverence and respect."

Same as above.

- "Secure from violation or profanation."

Children, non-adults especially should be secure from violation or profanation (in terms of pronography and the like). Adults must also be secure from violation, especially of the physical kind. However if "violation or profanation" means that the Bible or the Koran or any other "sacred" religious text should not be "violated" or be subjected to "profanation", then I say, sure they can. What's so special about religious texts to make them immune from simple criticism that may be interpreted by dogmatic religious leaders and followers as a "violation" of god's words, etc.

- not assailable; not liable to doubt, attack, or question.

Again, I don't know any person anywhere, living or in the heavens, who is too high and mighty and holy for any of us to challenge=, question or make fun of.

Rosie T.

Afarin Azarin!

by Rosie T. on

Lovely. All art is sacred and everything honest is art.  As Keats once said, "Beauty is truth and truth beauty/That is all ye know on earth and all ye need to know."

As for "cooling down the "heated" debate, Midwesty once said (after postng a reply to a blog of mine  which began "I find this blog utterly ignorant" and then proceeding in a friendly but critical manner, and I asked him how he could expect me to reply to such a post, saying it was like burning down a forest and then expecting it to grow) that when forests burn down, the new growth emerges more fertile than ever before.  (Or something like that). I am somehow certain that if our Fearless Leader needs a break, he will take one, and trust leaving us to our own devices. :o)

Last but not least, did you know that, if memory serves me, JJ was the person who was responsible for actually issuing the Fatwa to Rushdie back in the days when his name was Mohammed?  And so the world spins. LOL




What is sacred need be respected!

by Seagull (not verified) on

What is sacred? We are! we are all representations of life that must be loved, preserved and nurtured. life itself is sacred and must be protected by means of respect and tolerance and must be nurtured by kindness and consideration. This implies sincerity and transparency and intelligence in our dealings with each other and all life.
That is my take.
Treating others of different background or opposing views with kindness, consideration is respecting the sacredness of our being.
sometimes it proves to be difficult though but
I'll keep trying.


"anything ABSOLUTE violates it." violates itself!

by IQ (not verified) on

The plight of everything is toward absolute.
God absolutely Loves His children, so should we make a sincere, selfless attempt at that.
Jesus loved everyone absolutely even Judis when he gave him the kiss of death. He loved those who crucified him by asking for their forgiveness. So Q your statement in itself is an encapsulated absolute which is a null and in violation of its own implication.
anyways, JJ is asking us to keep that absolute in mind and make the effert willingly and that will be conducive and satisfactory!

Azarin Sadegh

"We must not become what we oppose." Salman Rushdie

by Azarin Sadegh on

Maybe my comment seems a bit unrelated to the heated debate about's rules of blogging/commenting, etc, but i hope to cool it down or to give a break to JJ!

Looking for the meaning of Sacred, I found this great article written as a response to this question: Is Nothing Sacred?

It's written by by Salmon Rushdie ...(I hope that you would forget for a few minutes who Salman Rushdie is and please read the article as if you have never heard about him.):


He starts the article by this line:

"I grew up kissing books and bread."

and voila the last line:

"Wherever in the world the little room of literature has been closed, sooner or later the walls have come tumbling down." Maybe Literature is the only sacred concept, as holy as beauty and as divine as eternity.  Azarin 


EDS, the slogan is correct, you are mistaken

by Q on

anything ABSOLUTE violates it. Even, ABSOLUTE tolerance. The only way not to violate it is to be not absolute.

If JJ was really saying "respect" is absolute, than alot more than ad-hominom or name calling would be erased. Any hint of "disrespect" in fact, would violate the rules. But that's not it.


I truly think we need those

by Anonymous.. (not verified) on

I truly think we need those who don't agree with the political leaning of this site (the owner was an ex-Hizballhi), should no longer participate and turn this site into an echo chamber of Marxist/leftist and Hizballhis congratualting each other

We of other point of views are wasting our time here...I will no longer participate in this

Rosei: You are not very bright...


Not true JJ jan,

by EDS on

JJ you wrote:


Since when does sacred mean the same thing as respect? Sacred ALWAYS refers to something that is divine or holy.

And I say,

This is not true. Sacred also means inviolable: "secure from violation, transgressing against or trespassing." In fact, these days this is the primary meaning that sacred is used for and really, what you meant when you originally explained the slogan.

This means that respect, itself, as you defined it is sacred on this site. In other words if you violate it in your posts then your post will be deleted.

Thus the slogan is inaccurate. Nevertheless, it is not necessary to scrutnize slogans or catchy phrases against truth. It is catchy and more or less correct. That is all.




by Gonjeeshk (not verified) on

Here are different definitions I've found for "Sacred":

- Of or relating to religious objects, rites, or practices
- worthy of respect; venerable
- entitled to reverence and respect
- secure from violation or profanation
- not assailable; not liable to doubt, attack, or question

As you can see, respect is one of the meanings. I don't think that you mean in your site "Nothing is ... (one of the last four definitions)".

With Respect,


Rosie T.

JJ, I don't know if you mean to, and maybe I'm misunderstanding

by Rosie T. on

you, but to me you seem to be implying that discussions on religion and spirituality are unwelcome here???? I MUST be misunderstaning.  You also seem to me to be implying that dogmatic religious people are particularly unwelcome here (???).  THEY, IMHO, NEED to be dialogued with and challenged perhaps more than anyone else!

Please reply, however briefly.

Jahanshah Javid

Respect not sacred

by Jahanshah Javid on


Since when does sacred mean the same thing as respect? Sacred ALWAYS refers to something that is divine or holy.



by Gonjeeshk (not verified) on

If you want to limit the definition of "sacred" to "religion dogma" in your site, that's fine. But then you should be frank and change the motto to something like "no religion is sacred", or "Islam is not sacred", or "all religions stink", ...

All I'm saying is that you're contradicting yourself by preaching respect on one hand and, at the same time, proclaiming that nothing is sacred (worthy of respect).

Moderator 1234

Libel is not sacred

by Moderator 1234 on

Here's an example of a comment I deleted recently.  It was left on an article written by an individual using his real name.  You be the judge on the merits of this deletion.  "Nothing's Sacred" means people can express their opinions about anything.  It doesn't mean that they can commit a crime of libel under an assumed name, most particularly against an individual with real identity.

How is CIA treating you ?

by zirak on

What are the pay and benefits?