False Disparagement of Consumerism

It seems right and biblical for the church to go after consumerism. It seems to strike right at the heart of the selfish fickleness of mankind. It often doesn’t. Have you heard leaders say that people who claim to be too busy for church are just giving excuses? I agree with the sentiment. For my […]

Bickering as an Evangelism Strategy?

“We have to have fights! That’s how we figure out what’s true!” Have you heard this line of reasoning? Does it strike you as oddly discordant? Of course no stupid idea should get a free pass — ideas should be tested. But that’s not my issue with this mentality. It’s probably no secret, but a win-at-all-costs perspective has seeped into […]

Bearings

Bear it. Bare it. Your life. Your soul. You will collect your bearings, and find your equilibrium in the spinning. Speak, even when you know nothing you can say will fit. A journey back to the very beginning; we’re left to wonder is there anything left to wonder about? Every important question — treated like a brightly-coloured, broken […]

How Do We (Re)Build Social Trust?

“Would you consider not being insulting by default?” “Awww, did someone’s feelings get hurt? Screw you, douchebag!” If you’re on the internet, you’re no stranger to it. This type of interaction is part of the increasingly radical polarisation that shows up everywhere. In this era, a public request to assert a personal boundary — no matter […]

Stop Telling People They’re Products

“You are the product!” Social activists who try to use this rhetoric to chip away at capitalism’s confidence have it wrong. Their message is that people are becoming products to be bought and sold. Their intentions are close, but so inaccurate that they are destined to be ignored by the people who need to hear it most. In […]

A Great Divergence

There is one divergence of opinion that is causing a massive, sweeping degree of polarisation, not least within Christianity. It involves our capacity, or even our perceived imperative to judge. Jesus seems to have gone one way with this. Paul seems have gone another. Rather than continue to play out some bizarre theological hissy fit between them […]

Communication Reveals Core Values

“Out of the fullness of the heart, the mouth speaks.” — the Bible (Matthew 12:34, ESV) How we speak about people and issues reveals how we really feel about them. This is interesting, because a lot of people think they’ve got their opinions and attitudes buttoned down and hidden away. People think they can hide […]

Interacting with ‘Her’

Warning: probably contains spoilers. If you care, watch the movie before you read this. It’s impossible, far-fetched and ludicrous…or is it? ‘Her’ is a profound exploration of where we might inevitably end up — a world where full-fledged (romantic) relationships between machines and humans have become normal. It’s full of great questions and often sad […]

What Passes for Wisdom

The world is increasingly full of negative noise. Very briefly, here’s why: it costs the self less to be angry and hostile than to be generous and welcoming. (I’m going to add this corollary: in the short term. Anything can be declared effective, if the duration it is examined is brief enough.) When people crash against ideals and […]

Ideas as Currency

It’s not what you thought when you first began it. — Aimee Mann Despite whatever you keep hearing about the economy, ideas are our real currency. As good post-industrialists, we continue to advance into a world of unreality — a universe that exist only in an increasingly abstract sense. Money is instructive here: we’ve moved from coins we […]