Wednesday, February 24, 2010

"My name is Jonathan, and I am an introvert."

"I'm an introvert. You are a wonderful person and I like you. But now please shush."

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Church and Culture: Language part deux

I think this video is a fitting conclusion in so many ways to part uno.

edit - Warning: Strong Language.

Snow Castle Proposal

No one would ever confuse me for a romantic, but this is just awesome.

Church and Culture: Language

I've always found the phenomenon of "swear" words interesting.  There's nothing particularly wrong about the words themselves.  For instance, neither the culture nor the church has any qualms with calling a donkey an ass.  So it's not a quality of the spelling/pronunciation that causes the word to fall into the category of "swear" word.  Likewise, "poop," "crap," and "shit" carry the same exact semantic domain (for all intents and purposes) whether used as a noun, adjective, interjection, etc.  It's not like poop is less stinky than crap.  So it's not the meaning of the word that makes it taboo.  So why can't Christians go around saying, "Damn! That ass's ass smells like shit!"?

Because for some odd reason, the culture has taken certain words tied to certain semantic domains and labeled them as taboo.  And people who say and do taboo things are assumed to have a certain kind of character.  As Christians, as those who claim to have something of the character of Christ, when we say/do taboo things, the culture associates that certain kind of character with the character of Christ.  There's nothing particularly sinful about the words themselves.  So as Christians, don't swear.  You make Christ look bad when you do.  As Christians, don't get your panties in a wad over those who do swear, or over movies/music/etc that contain swear words.  You make Christ look bad, and proclaim Him as law-giver rather than Savior.

Monday, February 22, 2010

A great article in the New York Times: Are There Secular Reasons?

Hey Ya! Charlie Brown

30 Best Pics of the year

Note, a couple of the 30 are popular due to the attractiveness of the women in them.  So here's a couple personal favorites if you don't want to see all 30.

If Only Twilight Ended Like This
Mind = Blown
A Health Care Protester We Can All Agree With
Seinfeld Summed Up in One Picture
There Are Two Sides to Every Story (my personal favorite)
Busters.  Myth Busters.

School Spying Scandal Gets Weird

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Division and Its Discontents - Math Post #3

Ripples in the Sky

Thursday, February 18, 2010

PA school system gives students laptops in order to spy on them

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Information vs People

Having spent several years being very critical of the Church here in the states, I'm now realizing that much of what's wrong with the Church is exactly what's wrong with the culture.  It is perfectly reasonable that Americans do church in an American fashion.  It's unfortunate that you get the bad with the good, but it's normal.  So I from time to time may write some criticisms of the Church, but it is my intention here to highlight the bad aspects of our culture, illustrate how they manifest themselves in American ecclesiology, and remind myself and my readers to be more aware of how culture has shaped us.

Modernists place a higher priority on information than on people.  As the church has good reasons to reject post-modern sensibilities, it is also highly modern.  I think the best illustration of this is the advent of denominationalism.  New denominations form by a group of people leaving a denomination because that denomination has its facts about God and the Bible wrong.  In essence, they forsake all of the relationships they had built in order to maintain their loyalty to the correct information.  This point was made clear to me in my Baptist History class.  400 years of petty bickering and parting ways over who was more "right".

We can see this manifest itself in other ways.  The central focus of the Church is a weekly religious lecture.  And the quality of the information of that lecture is considered the most vital element to the health of the church.  Sunday school is another example, stuffing kids away into the corner until they have been sufficiently educated on God to participate with the adults.

The wrong response would be to desire to be in a different church where they did everything correctly.  The right response is to not be so worried about how the church does things, and to invest in people's lives.

Monday, February 15, 2010

"That's what she said."

Making a Tough Call

"When faced with two choices, simply toss a coin. It works not because it settles the question for you, but because, in that brief moment when the coin is in the air, you suddenly know what you are hoping for."

"Too Late to Apologize" History Lesson

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Microsoft astronomically outdoes Google Maps

The video is 8min long but really cool.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Reagan's Star Wars brought to bear upon mosquitos

Monday, February 8, 2010

Math Blog Post #2

Here is the second post in a series on making math understandable to all.  It is both fascinating and enlightening, even to math dorks like myself.  I can't recommend it enough.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

It's a mad, mad world

Friday, February 5, 2010

A very interesting blog series on math

A comprehensive list of free online college courses


Scientific proof that the first cowboy to draw his gun dies in a duel

Communicating with vegetables

Some days I feel like I'm living in the future