Talk:THC Ministry

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References[edit]

ALL the arguments below REFERENCES should be ignored! Video Documentary on thc-ministry

    • ATTN: Video appears to have been removed ** —Preceding unsigned comment added by 24.44.17.190 (talk) 19:26, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

Religion[edit]


Quick Note: The government(at least in the United States) does not "recognize" or license religions, though they do provide for religious organizations to incorporate for various reasons... for example as a church to hold property or conduct commerce activities.

See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/501c3 as an example of regulations providing for religions to incorporate for specific activities otherwise regulated by law.


—Preceding unsigned comment added by 24.44.17.190 (talk) 19:30, 1 January 2010 (UTC)


For those who want to edit the THC Ministry page:

THC Ministry IS a religion, IT DOES NOT "CLAIM" to be a religion, as it is OFFICIALLY REGISTERED ON DIFFERENT CONTINENTS!!! SO PLEASE STOP VIOLATING THIS PAGE WITH DISRESPECT! I KNOW WE ARE RECOGNIZED & LICESENCED TO PRACTICE BY THE STATE IN HAWAII AND COLORADO!

We are aware that there are individuals who do not like the fact that there is a variaty of different belief systems on this earth and there are also individuals who do not agree with our mission. This does not give people the right to edit the THC Ministry page to give false information. Ferre

Please source your claims. people have the right to edit and what matters is to source the edits and make them neutral so any unsourced edits climing it is a religion can be removed. Please assume good faith, SqueakBox 22:28, 15 December 2006 (UTC)

Reply to Ferre:

First, there was the "claims to be a religion" version. Then it became "IS a religion". Then I made both those points of view available side by side so that viewers might decide for themselves. Then "Ferre" changed it back to "IS a religion" and flamed about me violating this page. Fine. This is what I have to say:

THC Ministry qualifies as a religion for being officially registered as such. But is that the ultimate truth concerning THC Ministry we should satisfy for in this case? And, most importantly, why should there be an "ultimate truth" in any case? What in God's name happened to offering people many different points of view?

I am a religious person and as such have no disrespect for various religious activity and religious groups - I don't buy that "one only truth" bull many religions market. I see all religions as different threads of one collective loom. I am also a cannabis law reform advocate and thus somewhat sympathetic of THC Ministry's goals. I also feel that the cannabis plant, as well as many other psychotropical substances, have played a major part in human religious history and possibly even evolution itself. But, in my mind, the blatant "use pot freely" -type of hype THC Ministry performs is at least an understatement of (and negative publicity for) all religious practice. What other religion bases its main message on literally offering a get-away-free card for socially or legally unaccepted behavior? What other religion focuses on advertising an expensive "kit" designed to free its holder of common law? What other religion hides its religious message deep into the labyrinths of some flashy webpage that screams out loud: "Smoke pot! Get away with it! Just hop on the religious freedom train! And pay us!"? I am referring to most major religions and quite aware that yes, there are hoaxes around, too.


If THC Ministry would publicly and foremostly focus on the truly credible issues, such as the long companionship between the cannabis plant and humanity, and not making money while trampling on the Bill of Rights, I'd have a different tone. Don't you "believers" have any shame for eating away at the very base of religious freedom in your society? Don't you realize that if enough people use freedoms, meant to assure safe and peaceful religious practice, for trying to "get out of the loop", those freedoms are some day going to be taken away from you?

DO NOT ABUSE YOUR FREEDOMS IF YOU VALUE THEM.LET ME STOP THE CONFUSION HERE


LETS STOP THIS IGNORANCE HERE

rev.baker of green faith ministry

If you would like to bring up some of the thc-ministries patrons faults 

(contant sacraments of the Herb) should not u stop there!! we do not preach to most western accepted religions about the clergy molesting the altar boys and all the alcholizm, money extohrtion, deviant sexual charades etc............. NO we let the courts(reason 4our sanctuary kit)and your head Religious figures determine that, So as a real and respected religion;

We WOULD like the same rights!!

(Not to mention cannabis is also a medicine and some people requie medication daily)

Then to complain about 200 dollars one time for a life time membership, free websites,

emails, support, instant answers,etc.... THAT'S ALOT CHEAPER THAN 10% of your earnings(plus if u cant afford it they will donate u the bare neccesities) SO I WONDER.... R u really as ignorant as your replies to ferrer imply? The church doesnt change things its the patrons, just like the people r supposed to run the government, and i can speak for alot of members who donate to(norml,mpp,asa,maps,drug sense,etc..)fight numerous court battles for all our constitutional rights(like to smoke herb all day)protest daily in the shittiest weather, lose friends and family, TO STOP THE STUPID DRUG WAR How do you think we got the idea for uniting in to one main source and what do you think the GOAL BEHIND OUR RELIGION IS?peace thru burnt offerings of kind sacraments (smokeherb) 06:35, 22 January 2008 (UTC)


As said before, I have nothing against using cannabis. Much more so I resist mindless drug wars. This is just my opinion on mixing avoidance of drug laws with true religion. I will not edit the THC Ministry page any more - I have no interest in waging an information war. But I urge you all to STOP TRYING TO ACHIEVE SOME ABSRACT "OBJECTIVE" POINT OF VIEW. It will not happen. It is a utopia. Why not let different opinions all be shown equally and let the viewers make up their own minds?

(I will answer that one myself: Those who most fear for their precious "truths" to tumble down also most resist any "stepping out of line".)

Peace! Juuso


Continued:

I checked the history of recent edits.

I find it hypocritical that the words "sell" and "price" have been changed to "offer" and "donation". What the * is that all about? Is it because THC Ministry has been registered as a religion that the action of trading funds for a product has "miraculously" transformed from simple business to "donations" and "offerings"? That is marketing speech. That is in no way different from any businessman's simple strategy.

Since THC Ministry supposedly "offers" a product in exchange of a "donation", shouldn't that imply that they would also give away freely the product in some cases? Shouldn't that imply that there would be no set price, as a donation is usually considered an act of variable value? Because otherwise that is just PLAIN BUSINESS. Nothing saintly about it.

I would like to know - just to clear things out - where these "donations" go to and who they benefit. Are the funds used to address the issues of unethical drug wars? Are the funds used to fight what is wrong in society? Or are they merely collected to the personal accounts of the "priesthood" of THC Ministry? Who could answer me?

If one would allow oneself a cynical outlook, he'd certainly see this as a pretty package covering a simple money-making scheme.

Juuso



Juuso,

If we don't use our freedoms, we will lose them. If we don't use our rights to the fullest, they might as well not exist at all. If you ever see the movie Demolition Man, there is a hilarious quote in there from the character Edgar Friendly (as portrayed by Denis Leary)

You see, according to Cocteau's plan I'm the enemy, because I like to think, and I like to read. I'm into freedom of speech and freedom of choice. I'm the kind of guy who'd walk into a greasy spoon and wonder - "Gee, should I have the T-bone steak or the jumbo rack of barbecued ribs with the side order of grave(y)rev.b fries?" I WANT high cholesterol. I wanna eat bacon and butter and BUCKETS of cheese, okay? I want to smoke Cuban cigars the size of Cincinnati in the non-smoking section. I want to run through the streets naked with green jello all over my body reading playboy magazine. Why? Because I suddenly might feel the urge to, okay, pal? I've SEEN the future. Do you know what it is? It's a 47-year-old virgin sitting around in his beige pajamas, drinking a banana-broccoli shake, and singing "I'm an Oscar Meyer Wiener."

As far as the article goes, I could care less. If they want to smoke pot and call it a sacrament, fine, let them. I don't smoke pot and I'm not religious. I agree with most of your post, but that ONE line, just got under my skin. I value my rights and I am inclined to use them. Abusing them is a matter of perception.

I know this is slightly OT, but I had to get it out of my system :-|

--barista 10:21, 23 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Straighten some things out[edit]

Hello Juuso, Ferre and everyone,

Aloha. This is Roger, Founder of the THC Ministry. Ferre alerted me to this discussion a few months ago and I'm finally getting around to commenting. A good debate is a fine thing. Thanks for bringing this stuff up.

We have been pro-'claiming' to be a spiritual path, or a 'religion' since our inception. We claim to be 'legitimate' and we can prove it because we ARE legitimate. Licensed by the State of Hawaii, registered with the I.R.S. We are A path, not THE path. We are A religion, not THE religion. Take your pick, there are millions of demoninations and sects out there. If you can find one for fellowship that feels good and right - great! If not, START one! That's what I did. It's all good.

As for as "scream out loud Smoke pot! Get away with it." That's not our style, or our motto, or our mission. We seek to provide a safe and secure shelter from the storm of extreme cannabis prohibition. We seek to fellowship with religious enjoyers of cannabis. Spiritual people. Respectful people. Reverent people. We seek to let people know that there IS a spiritual component to 'just' smoking pot. We let people know when they join to take a 'fast' and stop smoking for a while. Then start again with a small amount and see what happens. We recommend cannabis vapor, tincture, tea and holy anointing oil to avoid 'smoking'. (Smoke includes carbon monoxide, a deadly poisonous gas.)

We DON'T hype "use pot freely". Our ethics include using only in private - at home, or church. I can't and won't defend use in public, or any sales of herb. We also insist on zero 'commerce' in sacrament. This is NOT a 'winky-wink' cover or loop-hole for smuggling freighter-loads from Thailand, or wherever. I DO take "donations" for holy anointing oil and other services and sacraments. It's a fine line sometimes and I seek to be in integrity with good morals and ethics to the best of my ability. If I'm out of line, please inform me like a good brother would do. Mahalo.

We do provide a FREE membership for anyone over 21 years old. We do provide a FREE ordainment by referring people to the Universal Life Church. www.ulc.org.

Yes, we do have a $200. Cannabis Sanctuary Legal Defense Kit. So? It's fully guaranteed money-back if not satisfied. So far, zero people have ever asked for their money back. Why? It's worth it! Should we let people only donate what they want to I would soon be broke. A 'suggested donation' is the right way to go, in my opinion. Do I ever give it away for FREE? All the time! Just ask me for one if you doubt me.

Where does the money go? To me and to the ministry. Just get to know me a little bit and you'll see where I put my energy. For instance, I gladly testify in court for our members if they are ever arrested and prosecuted. Just last month I was on the witness stand for over three hours in one case of a Motion to Dismiss on religious grounds.

A "simple money-making scheme"? Not at all, bro. I do respect you asking the question, however. I need the ministry finances to be 'transparent' for all to see. Ferre has been advising me on this very thing, to his credit.

What other 'religion' faces such persecution in the USA? Zero. What other 'religion' faces such prosecution in the USA? Zero.

We need to stay pro-active or else we lose our members to jail or prison or drug-testing probation, or worse. I'm determined to exercise my rights as long as I'm motivated to do so. I usually prefer to do things for 'exponential benefit', however. One pro-active lawsuit to benefit millions of people instead of just fighting one defensive case at a time.

What else? I'm open to any and all of your criticisms. Fire away! Can handle.

All the very best to you,

Roger Christie

Hilo, Kingdom of Hawai'i February 20th, 2005

Advocacy/Commerce[edit]

Quoting from the website:

Do you use cannabis religiously?
Would you like to use cannabis religiously?
Would you like to be free of legal problems associated with cannabis for the rest of your life?
Would you like identification that will help to protect you from arrest, prosecution and conviction of cannabis charges?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then the THC-Ministry might be for you.

Now, let's distinguish questions 1 and 2 from questions 3 and 4. First off, whether and how one uses cannabis for religious purposes, this information ought simply to be made freely available without being "tied" to an "identification scheme" for protecting one from arrest, prosecution and conviction. Why is this not just put on the website, or offered freely?

As for the second set of questions, they have nothing whatsoever to do with religion, faith or belief of any kind. They advertise a strategy, one which I think unlikely to hold up in US courts at least, based on IDENTIFYING oneself as a member of this organization, without in fact necessarily even sharing their beliefs, whatever they may be.

Now, few people may understand what is meant by a sacrament, it is not a legalistic concept but one that can be directly understood through spiritual experience, or testified to by those who have knowledge of it. To the extent that the "THC Ministry" wishes to testify, I give them all support and encouragement, and I will even testify my own agreement. Cannabis is the sacrament of communion for some people. Others use it recreationally or without such effects, and I think they should not be prohibited from doing so, for the very reason they may discover such higher potentials. Indeed, I think this is precisely *why* it is illegal. Cannabis does more than this, it is also a treatment for pain and nausea and glaucoma and other conditions which are the subject of current medical pot advocacy, and this has validity although it is a narrower point. I make my own position plain here so that I will not be accused of bias against the concept of a cannabis ministry, when I say that this organization is apparently a commercial enterprise with a very damaging effect on the perceptions of people who may conclude that everyone who ascribes religious significance to cannabis is somehow connected with this legalistic and money-making scheme.

Since Roger Christie has posted here, I say to him: Do not trivialize this issue and make claims of legal protection which you cannot provide. The US courts have not recognized the right of Rastafari to use the sacrament, they will not give greater deference to your church. It has always been the case that those who hold sincere religious convictions must endure hardships and often practice in secrecy. I do not say you should stop testifying, to the contrary, I encourage it, but keep clear of claiming temporal powers you do not possess. Whig 08:17, 23 July 2005 (UTC)

Just wanted to add my two cents...[edit]

Just wanted to point out that according to (at least in the U.S.) constitutional law (that is, a decision handed down by the Supreme Court), it is not the place of ANYBODY to determine the legitimacy of any religion.

I think it sounds a lot more biased to say that they 'claim' to be a religion than to afford them the same courtesy given any other more 'traditional' religion. In the persuit of NPOV, therefore, it seems most prudent to refer to them as a religion, lest it should sound as though Wikipedia is saying that they are a bunch of kooks making wild claims. You CLAIM that they CLAIM to be a religion.

According to the American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition, Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company, religion is defined thusly:

re·li·gion n. 1. 1. Belief in and reverence for a supernatural power or powers regarded as creator and governor of the universe. 2. A personal or institutionalized system grounded in such belief and worship. 2. The life or condition of a person in a religious order. 3. A set of beliefs, values, and practices based on the teachings of a spiritual leader. 4. A cause, principle, or activity pursued with zeal or conscientious devotion.

I fail to see how the THC Ministry does not justify the use of the word religion according to this definition. On stumbling upon this debate, I read over the THC Ministry's website and found that they indeed provide quite an ample historical basis for their beliefs (or alleged beliefs, as I am sure some of you would like to word it). They say, correctly I might add, that cannabis sativa (hemp) has been used for centuries by Buddhists, and that there is are many theologeans that believe that the holy anointing oil of the Judeo-christian faiths (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam) is composed mostly of hemp. If you doubt the intent of the ministry's members, I suggest you browse their forums, where most of the discussion is about scripture (I doubt that even the most skeptical among you can suggest that a bunch of 'stoners' seeking mere legal asylum for their vice of choice sit around and discuss verses of the Torah, New Testament, Avesta, and other theological texts).

Just some thoughts. If in doubt, I suggest the Wikipedia community stop passing judgement. Isn't that exactly what we're NOT supposed to do? Thanks to all who read this, I read all of your posts before posting and appreciate the breadth of the discussion.--thereverendeg 15:30, 23 July 2005 (UTC)


Oh yeah another thought really quick here.... what's with people demonizing eachother? Why put quotes around "Ferre" sardonically... I mean, IT'S HIS REAL NAME! Jeeze people... how about some semblance of being civilized?


For some further reading on what does and what doesn't constitute a religion, those of you who seem passionate about this page might want to take a look at Mircea Eliade's The Myth of the Eternal Return, and his theory of the sacred and the profane. For a section of a community that's endeavoring to build and maintain an encyclopedia, I'm finding this discussion to be sadly absent of real academic sources in its arguments. Don't turn this discussion into just another bunch of ad hominem arguments arguments about marijuana use; then it won't serve any purpose. Instead, why don't we try to focus on finding a definition of religion that's acceptable to everyone who cares, and proceed from there? It's disappointing that you folks seem to want to argue from the pornographic definition (I can't explain it, but I know it when I see it...) of religion. Let's get something more concrete, please. - Tum Tum —Preceding unsigned comment added by 139.140.180.34 (talk) 01:29, 7 December 2009 (UTC)

Another thought.... perhaps wording acceptable to everyone...[edit]

I thought again about this and figured that this wording may be agreeable to all... How about instead of saying that "The THC Ministry is a religion" or that they "claim to be a religion" why not say "According to their website [and/or founder Roger Christie and/or practitioners], the THC Ministry is a religion..."

That seems to be NPOV-sufficient, while maintaining TRUE citation. Thoughts anyone? --thereverendeg 15:35, 23 July 2005 (UTC)

Just some notes in response to something Whig said....

[[1]]

Did you not say something about how American courts would never uphold his beliefs? I believe you, sir, are incorrect. I believe, sir, that the Circuit Court of Hawaii indeed qualifies as an American court. I believe, sir, that the document linked-to above demonstrates American courts to have done just this, sir. Good day, sir.

I don't see the Circuit Court of Hawaii having ruled against prosecution for cannabis possession or use by the THC Ministry, based upon this document. For the sake of those who are not familiar with legal practice, a "Stipulation" is by a party to an action, and in this case the prosecutor (not the judge) agreed that the "Religion of Jesus Church" is a bona fide religion, and that the defendant (Dennis Shields) sincerely believes in the sacramental use of cannabis. The particular charge that seems to be at issue here is "Promoting detrimental drug in the 2nd degree" in violation of some claimed statute. Frankly, I think such a charge ought to be dismissed on first amendment grounds at the very least. This is not a prosecution for actual possession or use. Whig 04:19, 24 July 2005 (UTC)

Urantia[edit]

Since thereverendeg claims to be a member of the THC Ministry I took his edit that the organization is based on the Religion of Jesus Church (Urantia) to be accurate, however I would like to see this documented/cited appropriately in the article. Whig 05:39, 24 July 2005 (UTC)

Ah, essentially the THC Ministry is founded in Urantia on the basis that Roger Christie (founder of the THC Ministry) "was ordained by the Reverend Dennis Shields into the Religion Of Jesus Church in early June of 2000" (according to the Hawai'i Ministry of Cannabis Sacrament's website at www.thc-ministry.org - exact page linked here, almost imediately after which he founded the THC Ministry by becoming licensed on June 19 (probably a week or so later) as a "Cannabis Sacrament" minister (document here). I'm not exactly sure how this should be added into the article, so I suppose I should leave this to you, Whig? I appreciate your manor, by the way. --thereverendeg 00:33, 25 July 2005 (UTC)
So is the THC Ministry a separate religion in any way from the Religion of Jesus Church and if not, should we move or merge this content? Whig 01:58, 25 July 2005 (UTC)
IMHO, the thing we should do is remove the redirect for Religion of Jesus Church (RJC) and instead make a new article for it. The THC-Ministry and the RJC are seperate organizations; Roger Christie simply was ordained by the RJC and used much of its structure to form the THC Ministry. The Urantia is also a seperate entity from the RJC, who use it as a religious text (though it isn't even mentioned in the Urantia article). I think a few changes are deffinitely in order to all of the mentioned articles. If there is no argument I will go ahead and set to work on it. --thereverendeg 02:48, 25 July 2005 (UTC)

'claim' edited in to be insultive[edit]

As I stated (in other words) in the first post I made in this discussion, I find it extremely insulting that people feel the need to edit this article to have it read that we, THC Ministry members, "CLAIM" to believe in our religion.

I am de founder of the Amsterdam THC Ministry and anyone who tells me that I "claim" to believe is clearly out to insult my religion, the members of my religion and me personally. WHY?

How would other religions like it if people start editing the other religions pages with that "CLAIM" to believe? Shall we introduce at the Muslim and Christian pages that they "CLAIM that there is a god" and see what happens?

I am afraid, since our ministry got attacked the way it was in this comments tread and the article itself, to edit anything in that page myself anymore because I feel bullyed by a few editors who do not have any knowledge of our religion and edit the article in such a way that we look like we are not sincere.

every time this article reflects sincere belief, this is edited out using POV as an excuse to do so. this is not right and for all I care wikipedia can delete this insulting article. --Ferre 07:29, 18 January 2006 (+1 GMT)


I have edited the article in the light of your comments and it should be okay now. I do agree with your comments, good luck with your legalising mission, hopefully you can spread that message further than just Holland, SqueakBox 14:46, 18 January 2006 (UTC)

Thank you very much SqueakBox, This is also very much appreciated by our members world wide. I also thank you for your kind words about spreading the message into the world. I have good news for you, and everyone else who have some sympathy for our cause, a google search on thc ministry will show you that we are now presented al over the world. Ferre 20:04, 19 January 2006 (UTC)

Removed the "delete" Message[edit]

The message stated that this article should be removed because according to the person who added this message, THC Ministry would be "Not noticeable".

This is incorrect, High Times magazine, the millenium edition, had an article dedicated to THC Ministry, also in the latest edition (Jan '08) there is an article about THC Ministry and THC Ministry is mentioned in a section of "The Cannabible" by Jason King, a frontpage article, Monday, September 06, 2004 on the Hawai'i Tribune Herald. There has been a four page article in the Dutch HighLife magazine a few years ago as well as articles in various news papers due to court cases THC Ministry members have been involved in due to their religious beliefs and many more articles in various magazines and newspapers the past 8 years.

January '07 the American tv presentator Bill Maher has travelled to Amsterdam for an interview with me personally to talk about THC Ministry for a documentary on religions which will be released within the coming months, directed by Larry Charles who also directed the "Borat" movie. If THC Ministry is not "noticeable" then tell me why Bill Maher comes all the way to Amsterdam with a film crew (two cameras and the works) to interview me about this religion. Apparently THC Ministry is not as un-noticeable as the editor who added that delete message would like people to believe.

Also, with a google search for THC Minisry with 77.900 results that is not what one would call not noticeable.

Firthermore, as one of the administrators I can confirm that THC Ministry has more than 10.000 registered members world wide (the amound exceeds 10.000 many times, but THC Ministry does not enclose exact statistics) and there is a physical head office in Hawai'i and an office in Amsterdam and it's officially registered in various US states and countries outside America. (one of them being the Netherlands)


Scanned article in Dutch Highlife Magazine; http://www.thc-ministry.net/downloads/HighLife-article.pdf (scanned copy on pdf file) Scanned article from High Times magazine: http://www.thc-ministry.org/pdfs/roger-christie-a-promotion-from-god.pdf

And as a last remark, I plead to wiki editors to drop their prejustice and stop their attempts to burry this article, in fact I fail to see why people who have different religious beliefs should be editing other people's religion's articles, as that delete message clearly displayd apparently there is some sort of bias against this religion on wiki, this is not the first time this article has been up for discussion about its credibility.

Ferre (talk) 22:29, 5 January 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia has a consistent set of rules for defining notability which apply to all articles equally. It is not arbitrary, biased or prejudiced. What you need to do to demonstrate notability is get links to show that the organisation has received independent coverage by reputable sources. To be honest, stoner magazines may not be considered the best reputable sources but you should still add them as references, if that is the best you have. If you have anything more mainstream then add that as well. Try to link directly to the source rather than a copy on the organisation's own site. If you can adequate demonstrate notability then the article will not be deleted. If not, I suspect that somebody will list it at Articles for Deletion. If that happens there will be a discussion about whether to delete the article. Remember, it is the article that we are concerned about here, not the organisation itself. There are a lot of organisations in the World which are not notable enough to be in an Encyclopaedia. It doesn't mean that there is anything wrong with them. Try not to take it personally. --DanielRigal (talk) 01:08, 6 January 2008 (UTC)

I understand, but I hope you can see my problem here. If I edit this article this is considered to be biased and that's why I have left this article as it is since ages, hoping that others who are considered to be more neutral would make additions to this article.

Your remark about "stoner magazines" is slightly insultive as well, as if magazines with a pro cannabis theme are not credible??? Are you telling me that, for example, a magazine about fishing could not give reliable information? What about magazines dedicated to science? Or are you just insinuating that people who use substances for other than medicinal reasons are not reliable? Of course you will find articles about THC Ministry on "stoner" magazines and websites, just as you'll find articles about fishing in fishing magazines, that does not make those articles unreliable whatsoever, there are many different fields of journalism and publications and in it's field, High Times is an internationally distributed quality magazine with a very solid reputation. I read it, as I also read the Times and The lancet and other magazines, each supplying information on different issues, each just as reliable as the other.

As for the urls from our own domains, these are scanned articles from two seperate magazines, in two seperate countries, those articles can not be found online, they were printed only, these are scans, not articles published at our domains in html, those articles are not pblished by THC Ministry, we only host the scans from the magazines they were published in.

When you say that there are other organisations in this world that are not notable to be in wiki, you forget that this is not just any organisation, it's a religion. Most other religions, specially the mainstream ones, have massacred millions of people during the past 2000 years and have interfered in our political systems in a very intrusive manner, that's notable alright, we prefer to be less notable. A belief system is a private matter, we don't go around converting others, we do not advertise and generally keep a "low profile" on an individual basis simply because of the prejustice and persecution most of our members experience regarding their religious/spiritual practices.

Ferre (talk) 11:54, 6 January 2008 (UTC)

You make some fair points. You are right that you should we very wary of editing the article as you are so closely associated with the organisation but I think that adding references to the existing content is OK under these circumstances. I wasn't trying to be insulting. The problem with the sources is that many counter-culture magazines tend not to have as high a level of accuracy as mainstream and other specialist magazines. They are independent however, so you can still use them as references. Reputable sources is not necessarily a binary thing and I am not saying that the sources you provided are disreputable. All I am saying is that an article in an indisputably mainstream publication would be even more helpful as it would establish notability beyond any question. I can see your problem with the scans. It is better if you link to the primary sources when you can but it is OK to use the scans when you can't. --DanielRigal (talk) 13:09, 6 January 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for your understanding Daniel. I will do some more searching for "reliable" sources the coming week, but please tell me, how can I provide proof for articles in newspapers which have only been published in print and are not found online? The Hawai'i Tribune has mentioned THC Ministry many times in several printed articles the past years for example, but none of those articles can be found online, other newspapers have articles online but one has to be registered to be able to read them, to name only a few problems I encountered the past days while looking for reliable sources. The problem is not that THC Ministry has not been written about by third parties in several publications, the problem is that there is little published online. Ferre (talk) 15:56, 7 January 2008 (UTC)

On a side note, is FOX news coverage of a THC Ministry member's court case "reliable"? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OvVeKj2DV8o Ferre (talk) 16:15, 7 January 2008 (UTC)

Sources do not need to be "on-line". Wikipedia accepts printed sources as well. For example, you mention that the ministry was written up in High Times ... this is fine. You can cite any information from the High Times article in the following way: <ref>''Article Title'', High Times magazine, issue & page number, date.</ref> The important thing is that things stated in the article be verifiable (see our policy at WP:Verifiability), and not based upon purely personal knowledge or opinion (see our policy at WP:No original research). At the moment they are not. Not having sources increases the likelihood that the article will be deleted. Blueboar (talk) 22:22, 11 February 2008 (UTC)