TGR-S3E1: Money, Sex, Power and God (Oikotics)

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This Tuesday on July 7th, 2020 we kick off Season 3 of The Great Reset by introducing oikotics, a novel discipline that unifies economics, politics, psychology & religion.

Question: What is the most useful and healthy way to think about money?

Perspective: Money is the most decentralized mechanism yet for a society to distribute Resources, Status and Relationships. As such, it complements — and competes with! — family, religion, and the state.

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The San Jose Declaration: Ending the Abortion Wars

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April 1st, 2031 A.D.

Perhaps the most surprising aspect of the San Francisco Revival of the 2020s was an end to the politicization of abortion, in a way that seemed unimaginable to those who lived through the culture wars that peaked during the Trump presidency.  While extremists on both sides still refuse to make peace, the public debate has largely moved on.

The turning point was when two courageous women made a conscious choice to reject the dichotomy between honoring women and honoring the unborn, thus defusing the righteous indignation that had fueled both sides.

And it all began with a yoga class…

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Spiritual Christianity: Theology, Simplified

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Update: Accepted as a Poster Session. Slides now available.

Abstract submitted for PassionTalks 2018 on Saturday, August 11th at Convergence House of Prayer in Fremont, CA.

Spiritual Christianity arose from a series of blog posts I wrote to prepare my seven-year-old daughter for baptism.  I wanted her to start out with a faith that was:

  • Resilient to disappointments
  • Relevant to culture
  • Revolutionary to society
  • Reviving to the church

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Cavern of the Bells: A Parable

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“The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface…” — Genesis 1:2 

At first, it seemed there was no sound or light of any kind. But as my senses adjusted, I heard a faint tinkling of bells. Straining my eyes, I saw tiny patches of light scattered around the walls of the cavern, flickering in and out.

I walked closer. I saw a rainbow of light erupt accompanied by a marvelous chorus of music. I watched breathlessly as the singing lights — perhaps fireflies or pixies — became caught up in some sort of eternal dance. I was speechless, wondering if the dance would become strong enough to finally push back the darkness…

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D-Church Panel: Redesigning Church in the Digital Era

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Live Event hosted by Analog.

  • Thu, April 27, 2017
    6:30 PM – 9:30 PM PDT
  • Google Mountain View Campus: LMK-2 Diller
  • 1883 Landings Drive Mountain View CA 94043 US

Update: Podcast audio now available.

Abstract

The modern church was born in the era of broadcasting: mass-market publishing, sound systems, radio, and television. These technologies enabled it solve certain tasks (e.g., teaching, worship music, announcing and producing events) incredibly well.  However, by making some problems much easier to solve than others, those same technologies can subtly influence what we focus on and what we ignore.

We are now entering a new era of digital communication, with greater interactivity, richness, and immediacy than could have been imagined thirty years ago.  What are the implications for learning, evangelism, discipleship, and outreach? What new problems does that enable us to solve?  Which traditional problems and solutions can be profitably revisited? Can all these changes lead us to a deeper understanding of what God truly wants the church to be?

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Becoming a Whole Christian

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I want to be a Whole Christian.

I want to love the Lord my God with all my heart, all my soul, all my mind, and all my strength, and be part of a worshipping community with others who do.

I want to love my brothers and sisters the way Christ loves me,
my neighbor as myself,
and my enemies.

Especially my enemies.  For I have discovered that I only see the log in my own eye after I find grace for the speck in someone else’s.

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Knight Club: How to Ride a Dragon

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Yesterday I gave my son Rohan (age 3 and 5/6ths) a set of colored dragons and attempted to explain my four-dimensional system for emotional maturity.  He grasped the basic idea quite quickly, though I had to modify some of the terms (e.g., “Obedience” instead of “Humility”).

Dragon Spurs Reins
Fear Safety Bravery
Anger Caring Thoughtfulness
Desire Hope Patience
Pride Honor Obedience

What’s interesting about this list is that the “Spurs” column is more maternal/feminine, while the “Reins” are more paternal/masculine.

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Knight Club: Moral Authority and the Fourth Dragon

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One of the ways I tackle “wicked problems” is by exploring different possible answers in order to help clarify the essential question. My posts on flying and mastering the dragons of manhood have been useful in helping me recognize that the two main questions Knight Club is trying to answer are:

  • What does it mean to be a man?
  • What can we do to help our sons become those kind of men?

I believe the most critical aspect of authentic manhood is “moral authority,” where people trust you will do the right thing.

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Knight Club: The Vicious Virtues

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I often feel I owe my success more to my “vices” than to my “virtues.”

What is a virtue? What is a vice?

  • Impatience
  • Anger
  • Rebelliousness
  • Restlessness
  • Infatuation
  • Daydreaming
  • Desire
  • Goofing Off
  • Subversive Activity
  • Laziness
  • Quitting
  • Boredom
  • Fighting
  • Delusions of Grandeur

Society — especially school, but the church is arguably worse — tells us these are crimes to be stamped out.

They’re half-right.  I call them the vicious virtues.  When misdirected, they can easily destroy both self and society.

But if you can master them — and through them master yourself — you can fix the world.

How do we create an alternative form of learning that embraces creative chaos and harnesses the vicious virtues, rather than fighting them?

Twelve Steps to Arrow-Proof Your Ministry

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Apologies for the pretentious title, but I wanted to challenge myself to identify and reorganize the lessons we covered in last year’s leadership class into a coherent prescription for facing down “Ministry Killers”. The idea is that each of these “steps” would be a single “life lesson”, but that together they provide the “full armor of God.

What do you think? Did I miss anything important?

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