Why it’s great that Elephant is “Wrong,” sometimes. And, “Elephant Should be Free!”

Via Waylon Lewis
on Oct 28, 2013
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“People who would consider it a bizarre breach of conduct to expect anyone to give them a haircut or a can of soda at no cost will ask you, with a straight face and a clear conscience, whether you wouldn’t be willing to write an essay or draw an illustration for them for nothing.” (From an article in the New York Times, today)

A letter from the Editor.

1. We posted an article tonight, with a now-famous image, and immediately a deluge of comments agreeing or disagreeing with…the photo appeared. Only 50% of the readers commenting seemed to have read the article.

So: welcome to elephant. We support views we disagree with, as long as they’re expressed with thoughtfulness. Even if they’re “wrong.” Let’s just remember: this community is not about agreeing with one another, or having another cozy little club or choir to belong to. Elephant Journal is about respectful dialogue. It’s about being “wrong,” sometimes. It’s about allowing views, and confusion, and dialogue to unfold and resolve instead of suppressing or blindly supporting.

I personally feel the photo in question is inspiring. But we can welcome other points of view without boycotting diverse experiences and welcoming only those similar to our own life experience.

In this Fox/MSNBC society, we have to remember to “like” pages or communities that disagree with our views. It’s sad to me that we readily unlike those who would disagree with us. My dad is conservative, my mom is liberal, and I love them both! ~ Waylon.

2. Perhaps because we’ve been growing so quickly, lately, but for the first time elephant is getting a daily question/complaint/reprimand or two about our paywallgate (see the top comment on the last post on this page for an example). So here’s some helpful info that you may not know: you get two articles a day, free. Who wants to read more than that? 98% of our readers read for free. Very few even realize we ask only our most loyal/passionate readers for $1/month (hardly anything) if you would like to read more than two articles a day.

But that’s not all! Want 15 more free, a week? Get our “best of the week” newsletter: http://www.elephantjournal.com/join-the-cause —free!

Finally: does this FB page post too often for your newsfeed? Then unlike this page, and like Best of elephant journal, instead: it posts farrrr less often.

Yours in the vision of Enlightened Society,

Waylon Lewis


About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now elephantjournal.com & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. elephantjournal.com | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.


4 Responses to “Why it’s great that Elephant is “Wrong,” sometimes. And, “Elephant Should be Free!””

  1. Saralyn ward says:

    Yes. Thank you for this forum for real, truthful dialogue! We so desperately need it! I’m so honored to be a part of it.

  2. John says:

    Just have to say I'm not sure about the photo thing. But the pay gate issue, if I'm honest I'm kind of upset that people would be so bold as to ask that you make this entire growing entity free! I pay I don't even recall what the minuscule payment is to read more each day. You know why? Because it's WORTH IT! Keep being awesome and thank you for introducing me to me to new writers whom I'm addicted to now 😉

  3. Love your work Waylon, and like these posts you right explaining about what EJ is and why you ask people to contribute to it's continuing development. Keep it coming. $12 a year for unlimited awesome articles? What's there to complain about?

  4. Jennifer Braun says:

    You do a great job, Waylon. I appreciate the varying viewpoints, the inspiration and the community. $12/annually is too much for all of that? Then please move to the back of the line, folks. I'm happy to continue to support EJ and recommend it to friends.