Physical TOTJO Temple in Texas Project

  • Ve-Lo-Zi
  • Ve-Lo-Zi's Avatar
  • Guest
16 Mar 2014 17:11 #141517 by Ve-Lo-Zi
Replied by Ve-Lo-Zi on topic Physical TOTJO Temple in Texas Project
Just some thoughts on this whole Temple Project: Some years ago I was involved with a new religious movement called Eckankar. They too had the plan to build a physical temple as a focus and main meeting point for their religion. They did eventually succeed in doing so and the (very impressive) temple was constructed in the 1990s. At that time however, Eckankar already had a few hundred thousand (dues paying) members as well as a multitude of regional Eck centres worldwide. Still it took almost ten years and an intensive fundraising campaign within the membership before the temple could be built, not to talk about the time it took for planning the whole project, e.g. finding a suitable and affordable piece of land (what good is a temple out somewhere in the wilderness?), architectural planning, taxes etc. And at the end, the temple cost more than was initially calculated. If you're interested, you can google "Eck Temple" and take a look at it.

What I'm trying to say here is: Sure, a temple sounds like a wonderful idea but at the moment, TOTJO has neither the necessity nor the financial backing for such a project. Calculating with a few thousand dollars is ridicolous and unrealistic. After all, there is only sense in buliding a temple if it is representative of TOTJO and that means it shouldn't just be a little wooden hut or a tent. Such things would just make us a laughing stock. Maybe if TOTJO continues to grow and Jediism in general becomes more recognised as a valid spiritual/religious movement, we can think about this again - in ten years maybe :whistle:

Please Log in to join the conversation.

  • Drexid
  • Drexid's Avatar Topic Author
  • Guest
16 Mar 2014 18:15 #141529 by Drexid
Replied by Drexid on topic Physical TOTJO Temple in Texas Project
My initial idea was that we could continually improve it as time passes. From wood, to concrete, to the goal. The temple itself would help us achieve that. But I do see your side. But remember Ve-Lo-Zi, Jediism isn't your typical christian religion. The structure of church and admittance isn't for the bulk of society. We don't want to brain wash people with sermon after sermon, we strive to improve our selves through learning and self learning.

The whole donation thing is not a subject of willingness(for me atleast), its of understanding. I run a website. It gets pretty good number of views but probably not what TOTJO gets. I only pay $8 regardless of the number of views per year. The view speed is up to par with other websites even during periods of high usage. Even if the cost was more, I expected no financial problems since there was never any talk of it. I think there should be more education in regards to the cost of operating this website. I do agree on not being aggressive with donations tho.

Does a temple call for the unification of the jedi religion? It would be hard to do, but very good for jediism. Is it realistic?

Please Log in to join the conversation.

  • Akkarin
  • Akkarin's Avatar
  • Guest
16 Mar 2014 18:43 #141531 by Akkarin
Replied by Akkarin on topic Physical TOTJO Temple in Texas Project

Drexid wrote: Does a temple call for the unification of the jedi religion? It would be hard to do, but very good for jediism. Is it realistic?


I've seen people talk like this is a good idea but... it really isn't lol.

Many people here probably haven't seen the, in some cases, extreme difference between ourselves and other people. There are other Jedi who would never think of joining us, or if they did would quickly leave, because we are so utterly different to them.

And that is fine.

I'm not sure it would be good for Jediism at all. What sort of thing do we expect? That we allow these different people to join together but retain their distinct differences? That perhaps they join one big organisation called 'The Great Jedi Church' or whatever, but have separate distinct branches so we can be 'Great Jedi Church - TotJO division' etc. That would be the only way you could have all the groups agree to be together, but then why bother?

Why create a new organsation called 'The Great Jedi Church' when something like that already exists 'Jediism'? We are the TotJO division of Jediism and they are whatever division of Jediism etc.

Unless what you want is not unification but uniformity - then you have already failed.

Please Log in to join the conversation.

More
16 Mar 2014 19:22 - 16 Mar 2014 19:25 #141533 by Whyte Horse
I understand a lot of the points made here. First of all, let me address what I see as meaningful purpose:
This is something that arises out of beliefs. Each person may vary but Jedi have a few common beliefs. Every time I read an introduction of a new member there's some reference to how they've felt this their whole lives, and in many cases it was destiny or fate or the force that brought them here. So to connect Jediism with a meaningful purpose for a temple, I would say that it's what we've wanted our whole lives. It may seem impossible and against all odds, but that's just like your opinion man.

A meaningful purpose for society in general... Jediism is open to all and offers enlightenment that isn't available in any school courses or other religions. So a temple could serve as a place to go and learn the Jedi way.

Meaningful purpose worthy of donations of the poor/rich: This is to answer the question "Why should I donate to you?". Or "What's in it for me?". In Buddhist countries, even the poorest people donate to the monks... it's rumored to give one good luck... If you want to collect money from non-Jedis, you need to answer this question to their satisfaction. I don't think promising good luck or blessings will cut it these days. You could focus on the positive aspects of having more Jedis around... Maybe Jedis are the kind of people who will stick up for the weak? Help others? You never know, maybe cities will be fighting over who gets to have a Jedi temple like they do over who gets google fiber...

I brought this up and asked Brenna because she probably deals with this more often. Mission statements, purposes, etc all have some similarities in the not-for-profit umbrella and having a good outlay can help fundraise, sort of the way having a cool commercial helps sell iPhones.

I'm not a big fan of soliciting donations from members either. I am, however, a big fan of soliciting donations from rich people. I do believe that TOTJOs status as a church provides a tax write-off. Rich people are constantly looking for tax write-offs. You could even appeal to their morality by telling them that by donating to TOTJO instead of paying taxes, they are funding peace rather than war... the choice is theirs to make... hehe. But this goes back to the "meaningful purpose" that I warned you to get straight before soliciting donations.

I know this dude who built a castle all by himself. You can learn to do it too in about 10min:

Now he has a donation box at the castle and hundreds of thousands of people come by every year. People have weddings there and you can buy etched glass windows with your name on it. That's how he funds the ongoing building. It's amazing and inspiring.

Few are those who see with their own eyes and feel with their own hearts.
Last edit: 16 Mar 2014 19:25 by Whyte Horse.
The following user(s) said Thank You: steamboat28, Jestor, Drexid

Please Log in to join the conversation.

More
16 Mar 2014 20:44 #141537 by Br. John
Our server cost is $60 per month to run the site. That's $720 for a year.

Founder of The Order
The following user(s) said Thank You: steamboat28, Jestor, Drexid

Please Log in to join the conversation.

More
16 Mar 2014 20:49 #141538 by Whyte Horse

Br. John wrote: Our server cost is $60 per month to run the site. That's $720 for a year.

Bill Gates spends more than that on one cup of coffee...

Few are those who see with their own eyes and feel with their own hearts.

Please Log in to join the conversation.

More
16 Mar 2014 21:34 #141546 by Brenna

Whyte Horse wrote: I understand a lot of the points made here. First of all, let me address what I see as meaningful purpose:
This is something that arises out of beliefs. Each person may vary but Jedi have a few common beliefs. Every time I read an introduction of a new member there's some reference to how they've felt this their whole lives, and in many cases it was destiny or fate or the force that brought them here. So to connect Jediism with a meaningful purpose for a temple, I would say that it's what we've wanted our whole lives. It may seem impossible and against all odds, but that's just like your opinion man.

A meaningful purpose for society in general... Jediism is open to all and offers enlightenment that isn't available in any school courses or other religions. So a temple could serve as a place to go and learn the Jedi way.

Meaningful purpose worthy of donations of the poor/rich: This is to answer the question "Why should I donate to you?". Or "What's in it for me?". In Buddhist countries, even the poorest people donate to the monks... it's rumored to give one good luck... If you want to collect money from non-Jedis, you need to answer this question to their satisfaction. I don't think promising good luck or blessings will cut it these days. You could focus on the positive aspects of having more Jedis around... Maybe Jedis are the kind of people who will stick up for the weak? Help others? You never know, maybe cities will be fighting over who gets to have a Jedi temple like they do over who gets google fiber...

I brought this up and asked Brenna because she probably deals with this more often. Mission statements, purposes, etc all have some similarities in the not-for-profit umbrella and having a good outlay can help fundraise, sort of the way having a cool commercial helps sell iPhones.

I'm not a big fan of soliciting donations from members either. I am, however, a big fan of soliciting donations from rich people. I do believe that TOTJOs status as a church provides a tax write-off. Rich people are constantly looking for tax write-offs. You could even appeal to their morality by telling them that by donating to TOTJO instead of paying taxes, they are funding peace rather than war... the choice is theirs to make... hehe. But this goes back to the "meaningful purpose" that I warned you to get straight before soliciting donations.


Yes. A meaningful purpose is absolutely a requirement before soliciting for donations.

So you're not a fan of soliciting donations from the people who are actually going to use the Temple... interesting.
But you are a fan of soliciting money from rich people who have no connection to the temple... right.

And yes, I do tend to deal with this often. Donor development is my key not for profit skill, which is essentially taking a donor and turning them into a committed supporter. This includes the solicitation of major donors (catergorised as people who donate on average upwards of $5000) and its hard work. Because even rich people, for whom you seem to have such little regard, still concern themselves with ensuring that the money they donate is used effectively and for a meaningful purpose.

I don't know how many rich people you deal with on a regular basis, but the ones that tend to support charities do so because they see it as an investment into much needed services. And its takes a LOT of effort to convince them of the worthiness of a cause. But their reasons for donating are often the same as a poor persons. And there are as many reasons as there are people.

There are always those who use it as a tax break. (though, one of my more genius campaigns was to convince them to donate their tax rebate to us! Most profitable month of the year :D ) There are those who use it as a tool to engage their staff, some who do it for the prestige. In the same way that those with less money get to brag about how many african orphans photographs sit on their refrigerator, those with more money get to have their names emblazoned on buildings.

The sad fact about fundraising for anything is that you are selling people nothing. Whether they are rich or poor, they get only what they feel out of the transaction. Even if the cause is a worthwhile one.

And Whyte Horse, you have a rather uneasy belief about rich people. I know some wonderful people with money, and also some horrid ones. But the same goes for those that I know without money. Money does not make people bad or immoral. It just magnifies who they are.

However, with a church, I struggle to see why membership should not be solicited. If they are using the facilities of a temple or church, then why should someone unconnected with the church bear the cost of that?


As I have mentioned before. When we are in a position of need, I would be happy to volunteer my experience with developing a strategy.



Walking, stumbling on these shadowfeet

Part of the seduction of most religions is the idea that if you just say the right things and believe really hard, your salvation will be at hand.

With Jediism. No one is coming to save you. You have to get off your ass and do it yourself - Me
The following user(s) said Thank You: Jestor, Wescli Wardest

Please Log in to join the conversation.

More
17 Mar 2014 02:52 #141586 by Wescli Wardest

Whyte Horse wrote:

Wescli Wardest wrote: There’s been a lot of discussion in this thread and a lot of talk.

Honestly, I donate every year and am glad to. And if need be I will donate more. Do we need a physical temple? No. But I plan on building one in a few years anyways. :P And I have been planning on building one for over a year now.

I don’t think TotJO is in any danger of being at the point where it is time to build a temple on her own. So to me, the entire debate about it is a moot one. Just my opinion.

PS. And what’s wrong with Twinkie? :huh:

hahahhahahhaha :laugh: :P :silly: :woohoo:

Well Wescli, thank you for supporting the temple and being so generous. If you plan on building a temple then why not team up with losers like me to make it an awesome loserville? No just kidding I'm a winner not a loser. Or maybe I'm a loser and not a winner, I forgot. But anyway the most important thing is we can work together and lose or win side-by-side and that's what's important.




As crappy as it may sound, the reason I don’t plan on teaming up with anyone is because I will most likely pay the cost of it and provide the land for it. And if it is on my land then I am responsible for all the legal aspects of it and the one that has to carry insurance on it, get the proper permits and maintain upkeep. It’s a big deal and I would love help.

And seeing how I have an engineering degree, working on the funds and supplying the greater majority of it and taking on the responsibility, I would like to choose who I get to deal with when the time comes. I have seen too many good projects and friendships torn apart by such undergoing’s.

That and I have absolutely NO desire to argue the best way to build something. Hahahhahahhha :P


I will take input when the time comes... and I will submit plans to the council since it will have TotJO's name on it. :D

Monastic Order of Knights
The following user(s) said Thank You: Akkarin, steamboat28, Jestor, Adder, Brenna

Please Log in to join the conversation.

  • Ve-Lo-Zi
  • Ve-Lo-Zi's Avatar
  • Guest
17 Mar 2014 07:03 #141600 by Ve-Lo-Zi
Replied by Ve-Lo-Zi on topic Physical TOTJO Temple in Texas Project

Whyte Horse wrote:

Br. John wrote: Our server cost is $60 per month to run the site. That's $720 for a year.

Bill Gates spends more than that on one cup of coffee...


Well, then we're all set. We just have to convince Bill Gates to sign up at TOTJO, maybe give him a nice honorary title like Grand Emperor of the Galaxy, and we'll get enough money to build not only a temple but maybe a Death Star as well :)

Please Log in to join the conversation.

  • Sheuthem
  • Sheuthem's Avatar
  • Guest
17 Mar 2014 10:58 #141605 by Sheuthem
Replied by Sheuthem on topic Physical TOTJO Temple in Texas Project
How about introducing a voluntary tithe? Those who would like to be involved in increasing the funds of TOTJO could donate 10% of their weekly/monthly increase, after all of their other affairs have been taken care of.

For example, if you earn 250pw and you use that money to buy food, pay bills, go to work, etc. At the end of the week you donate 10% of what you have left. If you have (£,$)25 left over, you would donate 2.50 to the TOTJO. It's not much, and it wouldn't put a dent in your pocket, but if there were enough people committed to doing this over an extended period of time, the funds would soon increase.

It's just a thought, and one that I am not precious about. Run with it or reject it, I'm happy either way.

Please Log in to join the conversation.

Moderators: RexZero