If your journal if "friends only" then it is personal, private, and your views should be respected by anyone who has the honor of being one of those friends. If you don't like what someone says, just stop reading their journal. It is CERTAINLY out of place for someone to write hurtful comments in someone else's private journal, even if you didn't like what you saw there. Actually, I believe hurtful comments are out of place anywhere, but that's just the Wiccan Rede popping up.
My journal is certainly "my space." While no-one owns the internet, my journal is certainly "my journal." That's why it's called a journal - it's a personal JOURNAL. It's not my husband's journal, nor my friends' journal - they have their own journals, under different usernames.
Group forums like Crescent_Crone are certainly places for debate and opinion. They are not the place for egotistical comments, but healthy discussion and differences of opinion are welcome. But in a person's privtate journal, especially a "friends only" journal, anyone who comments is only a privileged GUEST in that person's journal and should act accordingly. If someone BREAKS these rules, for instance by letting people who are NOT friends spy on someone's journal, then they get what they ask for.
One thing is for sure - I wouldn't let my under-13 child read an ADULT's PRIVATE FRIENDS-ONLY JOURNAL. I believe that it is not only is that asking for trouble, but it is betraying the trust that someone put in a person by making them a journal "friend" anyway. When I make someone a journal "friend," that status does NOT extend to everyone in their household or circle of friends.
Most journals even have kind (and I believe unnecessary) warnings at the beginning like "this is friends only - and the topics may shock - read on AT YOUR OWN RISK." Whose fault is it then, if one continues reading, and gets offended? It's clear to me, anyway.
I have a friend that said nasty things about some of my friends every time I saw her. I told her, "would you please stop talking about what you don't like about them - they are my friends." And she said things like "How dare you deny me the right to express myself? Don't repress my chakra!"
Well, with her head up in the clouds, and so concerned about "expressing her chakra," she was actually actively spreading malice. She was so concerned about defending her right to speak, that she had actually become OFFENSIVE - which is a different matter altogether. She wasn't concerned how her negative comments were hurting me or those around her. She was speaking from her EGO, not from a place of LOVE.
What this means is that while trying to protect her "wounded chakras" and looking out for herself, she forgot this one important thing: your right to express yourself and be militant about it ENDS when you start HURTING OTHERS QUITE UNNECESSARILY. Beware the ego.
We need to think before we speak. Ask the Goddess/spirit guides/angels: "is this comment truly loving? Will this comment show this person my love for all concerned? Or is it possible that, since this is pushing my own buttons, I might be expressing my ego? Is it possible that I am more concerned about making my point and expressing my anger and contempt than actually trying to HELP or spread love? Am I, for some reason, trying to convince someone that I am wiser than they? For it is certainly not true, for any reason! We are all wise in different, but EQUAL ways."
You can always express the same sentiment either with LOVE or from the EGO.
We are all looking for love and acceptance. Some of us are more vulnerable than others. If we don't like what someone writes, we can say "I'm upset about the things you wrote because I worry about you - I love you and want you to love yourself too!" One thing is for sure: everyone I know on Livejournal are ALL ADULTS, and their thoughts and feelings are as valid as anyone else's. We need to remember that we are ALL spiritual and emotional PEERS. Frankly, I think EVERYONE is a bit fucked up - MYSELF included, at the TOP of the list.
I don't know ANYONE who by age or experience is more qualified to make judgements than others. Basically, NONE of us are qualified - making judgements is the OPPOSITE of LOVE, and so judgements should NEVER be made - just express LOVE instead. We have all had past lives and are we we are all pretty much experientially the same, even if there are different in our ages in THIS lifetime. I don't know ANYONE on livejournal who is any more or less wise or mature than another. We have different viewpoints, perhaps, but there aren't any with priveleged information or maturity. Some of us are just more fucked up than others - but that is who we are. Any loving comments or suggestions are helpful - but we all need to realize that any advice we give out (LIKE THIS POST I'M WRITING NOW!) is no more valid than anyone else's thoughts. It doesn't matter if you are a old, young, a professor, a mother, a priest, priestess, crone, student, or none of the above - we are no different, better, or wiser than each other. NONE of us should forget that. Do not look upon old or young age as inferior/superior - it's just not so. I know some very wise young people and some fucked up flaky old farts. Use what is loving - discard what comes from the ego. We should know better than anyone that stereotypes - even those associated with age and experience - are just that - stereotypes and not reality. Wisdom comes from the most unlikely places - and so does the ego.
I would like to pray to the Goddess and all of our spirit guides/angels to help us all be mindful of the words we say, and to help us all be compassionate toward others' thoughts and feelings. Let us offer loving acceptance to all, and suspend all our judgements.