I'm posting a journal about this; it'll be more official this way. But it won't make it any easier to leave. I depend on deviantART; I spend an enormous amount of time online, and especially on deviantART. I honestly don't know how I'm going to fill my time. It's going to be really, really difficult. Assuming I'm not banned for posting this, I shall log in on 23 December to wish you a happy holiday, if you celebrate it in any way. After that... I don't know how long it will be before I return.
I'm leaving because deviantART will not reprimand anyone who says the most hateful things in the name of religion. It is against the rules to say that you deserve to be eternally tortured, but not to say that you deserve to be eternally tortured in Hell - the latter is 'widely accepted religious dogma', which deviantART classifies as fine. Well, I don't classify it as fine. I classify it as bullying and hateful and intimidating, and potentially very psychologically harmful indeed.
I wonder if deviantART would have banned the reverend Jerry Falwell had he made an account and logged in and said - as he did on television while downtown Manhattan was still smouldering from the attacks of 11 September 2001 - that the attack on America were justified because that country allows divorce and homosexuality. Something tells me that he wouldn't have been banned for saying this; it's 'widely accepted religious dogma', after all.
Please see the following Christian perspective on divorce. deviantART will probably classify this as SFW since it's a discussion of 'widely accepted religious dogma'; I on the other hand would like to suggest that some
people might find this very offensive and hateful and bigoted indeed: www.jesus-is-savior.com/Evils%…
And please see the following Christian perspective on homosexuality. Same as above, some
might also find this very offensive and hateful and bigoted indeed: defendproclaimthefaith.org/blo…
I quote from deviantART's Etiquette Policy:
'We must insist that you refrain from comments which are racist, bigoted, or which otherwise offensively target a philosophy or religion. In addition we ask that our members avoid making offensive remarks based on gender or sexual preference and that you do not make any remark, comment or critique which is intended to be a direct insult to an individual, group, or genre of artwork. Hate propaganda is met with zero tolerance. Comments which are overly aggressive, personally insulting or needlessly abusive are also prohibited.'
All right. Telling people that they are going to go to Hell - to put it another way, that they are going to be eternally tormented in Hell - if they don't believe as you do, or live as you do, is bigoted and offensive in my opinion. Who can say otherwise? But no! No, no, no! If you are religious, you are allowed to make such disgusting statements, because they are 'widely accepted religious dogma'.
I know that some people will claim that saying that God does not exist is also very offensive and hateful and bigoted indeed. Well, for one thing it is certainly not as offensive as saying that a person deserves to be tormented forever; if you know of a worse idea than the idea of eternal torment, please post it below.
Saying that God does not exist does not 'target a philosophy or religion' because there have been many Gods over the course of history, and the religious themselves cannot agree on what their Gods are said to have said and done: the lines are far too vaguely drawn for this to stand a chance of being offensive.
And then there are religions and belief systems in which God plays little or no role. To take but three examples: deists believe that God doesn't intervene in human affairs, the ancient Greeks believed the same thing of their Gods, and there are many Buddhists who believe in no deity at all.
I quote from the Rig Veda, an early collection of Sanskrit hymns:
'Who knows for certain, who shall here declare it? Whence was it born, whence came creation? The gods are later than this world's formation. Who can know the origins of the world? None knows whence creation arise; or whether he has or has not made it, he who surveys it from the lofty skies. Only he knows: or perhaps he knows not.'
If I were a Hindu and I quoted these lines, would deviantART consider me to be targeting a religion? Or would it say that I was fine to say this because it's 'widely accepted religious dogma'? (The Rig Veda is 3,500 years old - older than the Bible and the Koran by far - and one of the earliest of the Hindu texts. And according to the CIA World Fact Book, 15% of the world's population is Hindu.)
I'm not being incendiary. I'm expressing my anger that deviantART allows people, in the name of religion, to say that other people deserve to be eternally tortured. It is my opinion that this is shameful. I feel too strongly about this - as a matter of conscience - to be able to derive any enjoyment from the site - a pity, because I do love deviantART. I wouldn't have stayed here for nearly seven years were that not so. I hate that there are people who can get away with saying disgraceful things on deviantART because they are religious.
I love my watchers, and my friends, and the people I interact with regularly, and the people I've just recently met on here. You may if you wish add me on Skype: I'm @
sanknow. Or you may add me on facebook: facebook.com/sanknow/