Wednesday, January 31, 2007

reconciling Ash Wednesday and K Mart..or not

It's a sacred form and yet it's also incredibly annoying and profane because it's the soundtrack in shopping malls across the country. I'm interested in reconciling this phenomenal event -- the incarnation of God -- with Santa Claus and blue-light specials at Kmart and the weird preoccupation we have with buying a lot of junk and giving it to each other."
--Sufjan Stevens in Rolling Stone on his new album, Hark! Songs for Christmas


CBS New York correspondent: "Is there any significance to holding this press conference on Ash Wednesday and staging the first date in Las Vegas ?"

Bono: (teasing) "A-ha - Ash Wednesday ! That's very well spotted ! I reckon the combination of Ash Wednesday and K-Mart just about sums U2 up, and therein lie our contradiction and the cross we carry..."

LATER NOTE: Watch it at 6:50 in the clip below (after you watch the classic first twenty seconds)
The whole press conference in four parts is now on YouTube part one, part two, part three, part everything else!:

Here's U2 playing "Holy Joe" (the only song I know based..loosely..on the evangelistic CHICK TRACT of the same name)live at K Mart, after the press conference mentioned above (in part 4 of the conference, they field a question about this song as debunking and accepting their "sainthood" (5 min mark and ff above..BTW is that an intentional middle finger salute Bono gives the interviewer at the  5:38-40 mark?)

Wisdom Schools for the New Reformation

I am sure I don't agree with everything Matthew Fox is into, or all he means by some of the following, but I love some of his "Theses for a New Reformation." A very different list than Wolfgang Simson's....or is it?

I particulary want to highlight #77 (I love that number anyway):

"Seminaries, as we know them, with their excessive emphasis on left-brain work, often kill and corrupt the mystical soul of the young, instead of encouraging the mystical and prophetic consciousness that is there. They should be replaced with 'wisdom schools.'"


"If you can talk, you can sing. If you can walk, you can dance (African proverb). If you can talk, you are an artist. (Native American saying)."


"Necrophilia (love of death) is to be opposed in self and society in all its forms"

"Electrons Have Free Will"

I love this kind of the recent "Science Suggests All Humans Have a Spirit." When such is reported in science journals, and not just conservative Christian magazines quick to oversimplify apologetics or demonize just smells like God is at work (if you have not heard Bono's anointed sermon about God and science...spoken as the intro to "Miracle Drug" at the Brooklyn Bridge concert, it must be heard, not just read ).....
What is next? Will science suggest neutrons are predestined? (:

SEEDS magazine (byline: "Science is Culture") is an amazing resource. A recent letter to the editor nailed it:

"There was a void between the pretentious magazine with the initials SA and the one for dullards (with the initial D), and you have filled it. I've been hankering for something that gives solid coverage..but has enough of a sense of humor and candor to make it cool." (Aaron Case, Stone Ridge NY)

On to the article:

"Electrons Have Free Will"
by Jonah Lehrer
originally blogged here, then printed verbatim in
Free will has traditionally been reserved for big things, like brains and people. But what if free will was embedded in the very essence of everything? What if elementary particles - matter in its most minute form - were also endowed with some existential elbow room?

John Conway and Simon Kochen, two Princeton mathematicians, have given this strange idea an elegant mathematical proof. On the basis of three rhyming physical axioms - spin, fin and twin - they have constructed a theory of sub-atomic freedom. After acknowledging their debt to various quantum paradoxes, they argue "that the response of particles to a certain type of experiment is not determined by the entire previous history of that part of the universe accessible to them." The results are also not a function of information accessible to the experimenter. According to Conway and Kochen, even an omniscient mind, capable of knowing everything about everything, would still be unable to predict the position of the particles.

What, then, is determining the outcome of the experiment? The obvious yet absurd answer is that the particles themselves are determining the outcome. As Conway and Kochen write, "No theory can predict exactly what these particles will do in the future for the very good reason that they may not yet have decided what this will be!" Of course, most of these sub-atomic choices - the mathematicians call them "ineffectual flutterings" - won't affect very much beyond their own trajectory. Nevertheless, their indeterminacy appears genuine. If we are free, then so are they.

-Jonah Lehrer, Seed Magazine,Jan 2007

Monday, January 08, 2007

Why coffee shops?

"We tend to go to cafes for other reasons than drinking coffee..we can do that at home-it's sometimes better and always cheaper. But what we can't do at home is be among strangers. Cafes are unique social spaces where people go specifically to be with others and yet be separate."

Kapka Kassabova, "In the Company of Strangers,"
quoted in Steve Taylor's "The Out of Bounds Church," p 116

Saturday, January 06, 2007

centered sets with moving center

Which center dot is bigger?

sometimes the center disppears when stared at too long:

Brian McLaren mentioned something about centered sets in the Kingdom; Ever try to catch up with, focus on, center on Jesus; and find that he apparently had "moved"? Should be no surprise; he is on mission.

Holy Spirit is on the move, we just need to move with the movement...

We can celebrate having moved beyond "bounded" sets with static Christianity; and forget Jesus cannot be static either..

Most diagrams found online here, here or here

which dot (green diagram with two dots) is center?..find out here)Optical illusion of the center:  It is the blue point of left which is in the center.