The Philosophyguru

Tom the Philosophyguru In 1999, as I was building web sites, and helping to create a community on Tripod, I became the moderator of the spirituality Pod at Tripod under the name philosophyguru. 

A Pod, as it was known back then was simply an online community where there were moderated forums and chats centered around a theme, and folks built web pages.  The name philosophyguru fit the topic.  When the Pods were shut down, when Tripod merged with Lycos,  I started looking for a way to create a "playground" like the online community I moderated on Tripod.

The goal of the Philosophyguru is not to try to get someone to agree with any specific beliefs, but to help folks to understand ideas and philosophies, so they may look at things in ways they never have before. 

It's about love and laughter and being human. It's about sharing ideas and being a little bit crazy in order to stay sane.  Studying the wisdom of Confucius and Zen, then back to Bob Seger and Rock again,

I started reading the works of the great philosophers when I was old enough to read. I took my first philosophy class back in high school. As time goes on, I continue to organize my notes on philosophy to share with those who care to learn, and for those who dare to dream.

There is no one "perfect" society, but in a perfect world a person should be able to freely travel between different societies.  To understand the world today, we need to appreciate the roots of our ideals of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. It's time we all revisit the dreams and visions of Thomas Jefferson, The Declaration of Independence, and those who influenced the birth of our nation.

Just as it would be bold for me to say I've discovered the ideal society, it would be just as bold for me to proclaim I've discovered the ideal religion. I've been raised, and exposed to many segments in the Christian faith. I've also studied, and explored many of the world's religions and philosophies. I consider myself very open minded when it comes to religion. I live deeply and passionately, and have a great respect for people of many beliefs, for people without beliefs, don't have much. Once again, the "ideal" is not so much about any one religion as much as it about the freedom to practice our beliefs.


Evolution of Guru 42

 While my concept of Questy dates back to 1977, I started using the online alter ego of Questy in the early 1990's. As I began developing web sites, and an online identity, the colors green and purple, along with the Questy character, have created my own brand identity. When I took the "World's of Questy" websites offline, I knew it was just for break, and in one way or another, they would be back.

Instead of being an alter ego, I wanted the new online identity, the one that would assume the role of the "mother ship" of my online world, to be the direct reflection of my thoughts and ideas.

In searching for a name for this new central theme I kicked around various combination's of words and phrases. I had used the term guru in other previous online adventures, and thought of how it might apply here. In the strictest philosophical sense the term guru is used to describe one who is regarded as having great wisdom in a certain area, and who uses it to teach others.

In my philosophical adventures I had often used variations of the name Questy, such as TaoQuest or PeraQuest (a word I coined to mean the journey throughout the possibilities.) In 1999 while hanging out on the Tripod online communities I became a community moderator, and created the identity of Philosophyguru for that role. Later as a volunteer for the Open Directory Project I used the screen name Philosophyguru. So I would again use the concept of the guru as part of my online identity.

While I liked the concept of the "guru" I wanted to spin just a bit off center so it would not seem that I was taking any particular slant. What better place could I look for an off center spin, than to look to the world of science fiction.

In the "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy," (a science fiction comedy series created by Douglas Adams), a
computer named Deep Thought is asked to calculate the answer to the "Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything." The answer was revealed to be 42. Douglas Adams would later create the 42 Puzzle, a puzzle which could be approached in multiple ways, all yielding the answer 42.

So now comes Guru 42, the satirical spiritual teacher, looking for the answer to life, the universe, and everything. Guru42  would be the core websites of my new universe, a place to reflect on the world around us, and without taking the stand of any one philosophy, to step back and try to understand a little behind the logic, or in many cases the lack of logic of the events of the day.

Mahatma Gandhi once said, "The various religions are like different roads converging on the same point. What difference does it make if we follow different routes, provided we arrive at the same destination."

No matter what your destination, or puzzle in life, don't get hung up on thinking there is only one way to approach it. My mission, to stretch your brain to see things in a different perspective. Even if you totally disagree with me personally, if you think about a problem or idea in a way you never have before, I have succeeded.