Open Buddha

Open Source Buddhism, Technology, and Geekery
Bay Area, California

Meme Therapy and Thoughts

I may be on the Memetherapy blog soon (unless they choose not to use my comments, of course). I was contacted by them a bit over a week ago about replying to some questions. I’m not sure how I rate but it is an excellent blog so I am happy that they contacted me. It makes me feel special (unlike tiresome posts on hats). Check them out at http://memetherapy.net/. In other news, I think my thesis proposal has been approved by my faculty advisor. I’ll know more once the U.S. Postal Service delivers the official response. If this is the case, I have a couple of months of on and off thesis writing to do. Following this, I will finally have my Master’s degree. Personally, I’m ready for this to be done after nearly two years of school after work in the evenings but I am pondering whether I want to pursue doctoral work and, if so, what I wish to do.

One of the ideas that I’ve had quite a few thoughts on (mostly while trying to sleep) is on open source approaches to religion and spirituality. While bits have been done here and there on this topic, I’m not sure anyone has done anything comprehensive in this space. This is more likely a book idea than one for a dissertation. The intersection of ideas around non-hierarchical organizations, an open approach to spiritual investigation, and the sharing of ideas, methods, or techniques, especially in an increasingly connected world is an area of interest to me. One of the problems that I can see in this space is that open source frameworks are often meritocracies and this is hard to do within spirituality because of the inherent hierarchy that develops around skill, knowledge and experience. Of course, from another point of view, this isn’t too different than the experience of new members of open source projects and the role of experienced developers or designers… It is a hard problem to create an open framework for sharing and exploration or self-development while not flattening naturally hierarchies that exist because they actually do matter and serve a purpose.