Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Maybe it's a sign (55/365)

Stewart saw this on the lift at Starbucks today... It was who we were talking about. Maybe it's a sign...?
[Sent from my iPhone]

Posted via email from headphonaught's posterous

Monday, February 23, 2009

Learnin' (54/365)

Learnin' (54/365), originally uploaded by Headphonaught.

It was awesome to watch my 9 year old daughter teaching my 60-something mother how to use gmail this evening. There was a commonality of willingness and learning that I thought was beautiful to witness... and was glad to capture the moment for today's Project365 pic.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Loving me some Bees...

The Chicken Payback (An ideal song for when things get too serious and a cheese intervention is required!)

Wash In The Rain

Who Cares What The Question Is?


Amos 5: 21-24 (The Message) wordle #3 for iphone

Amos 5-21-24 (The Message) wordle #3 for iphone, originally uploaded by Headphonaught.

Here's a wee wallpaper for your iPhone... based on the challenging words of Amos 5: 21 - 24 (The Message):
I can't stand your religious meetings.
I'm fed up with your conferences and conventions.
I want nothing to do with your religion projects, your pretentious slogans and goals.
I'm sick of your fund-raising schemes, your public relations and image making.
I've had all I can take of your noisy ego-music.
When was the last time you sang to me?
Do you know what I want?
I want justice—oceans of it.
I want fairness—rivers of it.
That's what I want. That's all I want.
I make no appology for repeating these words... because I believe them to remain extremely relevant and pertinent to today's church. So much so... I created a wallpaper to remind myself of them.

Go here to download. My thanks, as always, to wordle.net for the graphic. Oh and if someone can tell me what the dimensions are for a Blackberry... I'll make one for the BB too.

Olly & I

Olly & I, originally uploaded by Headphonaught.

Geekin' out...

I really geeked out while out with Olly & the we'ans... Picked up a Staedtler "Learner's Pencil"... a bottle of Kia-Ora... some "gerkin relish"... and a "Mount Doom Frodo" action figure for my computer desk.

To make my day even better... I got home to find a Starbucks "Brewed Coffee Card" posted through the letterbox which entitles me to 1 free "tall estima" each day after 2pm between the 20th Feb & 21st Apr. Result!

It's amazing how completely random things make me happy.

What random things make you happy?

See and download the full gallery on posterous

Posted via email from headphonaught's posterous

Friday, February 20, 2009

Finding inspiration in the love of a life time...

I like to watch people dance. I prefer passion to skill... any day of the week. To witness the love of a lifetime expressed with the eloquence of fluid movement... with a gesture... and a smile... is so inspiring. Keep dancing!
[Sent from my iPhone]

Posted via email from headphonaught's posterous

I'm a blessed man!

Olly aka littlelaughalot
[Sent from my iPhone]

Posted via email from headphonaught's posterous

A salt water bath (51/365)

Today is the last day of my recouperation... Back to work on Monday. No more midday baths for me.

Salt is a wonderful thing. It adds flavour... it heals or at least helps in the healing process... and it protects - it cures food & helps to melt ice.

All this in moderation, however.

Too much salt can overpower, hurt & sully... but the right amount brings considerable benefit.

Made me think of Jesus' metaphor of salt... calling His followers to be salt in their world.

Do we overpower or do we flavour? Hmm...

Sent from my iPhone

Posted via email from headphonaught's posterous

I loved this comment from CowPunkMom:
Salt is best if it is spread through-out the dish, isn't it? Out of the shaker and into the dish.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Sometimes it's nice to listening to music in an old fashioned way...

Sent from my iPhone

Posted via email from headphonaught's posterous

Loving me some... Bag Of Nothingness

Every so often something comes along and knocks me off my feet... in doing so it challenges what I have held up as true and makes me reassess my views.

The Error Broadcast compilation Bag of Nothingness has done just that. You see... I always thought I wasn't a big fan of hip hop... but then I listened to this compilation and it reminded me of all the good things that hip hop has to offer, especially the leftfield... experimental... abstract... styles that push boundaries with their creativity.

Listening to this album reminded me of the early days of Mo' Wax... listening to Shadow... Krush... the first Headz compilation... Attica Blues... etc etc. Back when hip hop was, for me, vital.

Thats when I realised it wasn't the music... I love me some big, chunky beats... it was the inane rapping that turned me off. All that "money 'n' hos" mentality that switched me off... and in doing so blinded me to all that is good, authentic and vibrant in the genre.

This is a great compilation of bass-heavy beat-centric kind of abstract instrumental hip hop that truly wonderful. Music that deserves its place on my iPhone. Music that will keep my head nodding for a long time to come. Some people may say "dubstep" is the sound of bass just now... if they do, they haven't heard this compilation.

Whats more... the compilation is a free download... released under a Creative Commons license... and features musicians/producers from throughout the world. Truly a global effort!
Artists from the US, Russia, Japan, Germany and a lot more joined the Error Broadcast Collective. The compilation is online for free download, so please support our artists and ourselves by saving the record to your players and spreading the word. Watch this place!
Check it out!

Top picture posted with LifeCast... the remaining picture and the thoughts we added later.

These are not tools that enhance, they are tools that displace...

There is an interesting report on the BBC NEWS website about a Doctor's fears regarding social media...
/..Dr Sigman maintains that social networking sites have played a significant role in making people become more isolated.

"Social networking is the internet's biggest growth area, particular among young children," he said.

"Social networking sites should allow us to embellish our social lives, but what we find is very different. The tail is wagging the dog. These are not tools that enhance, they are tools that displace." ../

/..And he claims that interacting "in person" has an affect on the body that is not seen when e-mails are written.

"When we are 'really' with people different things happen," he said.

"It's probably an evolutionary mechanism that recognises the benefits of us being together geographically.

"Much of it isn't understood, but there does seem to be a difference between 'real presence' and the virtual variety." ../

/.."One of the most pronounced changes in the daily habits of British citizens is a reduction in the number of minutes per day that they interact with another human being," he said.

"In less than two decades, the number of people saying there is no-one with whom they discuss important matters nearly tripled."

Dr Sigman says he is "worried about where this is all leading"../
It would be easy to dismiss these comments as the ramblings of someone who hasn't "got it"... but I won't... because I can see truth in them.

Whilst I am an advocate for social media and strongly believe that community is no longer defined by only one atribute - namely physicality - but can be defined by interest/passion too, I do see the need for physical community too. I believe both can/do/should enhance our lives... my recent time off is testament to that - 5 people visited me, a lot more sent cards/tweets/SMS etc. I valued all forms of contact.

I am a firm believer in a firm hug... I believe in the power of sitting down with someone for a pint, a coffee, a tea or another beverage. Most of all... I believe in peoples stories and the power of just coming together to talk (albeit I am learning to talk less and listen more). I believe these elements to be crucial... because we have an inate need to be together... to be in community.

This is why the Twestival was such a success... and why gatherings/tweet ups/meet ups are of such value... because they bring the online into the offline dimension.

We lose a lot in email. I have seen this to be true time and again. We gain so much by speaking... picking up the phone or hooking up via Skype.

Regardless of how we do it... We need to be there... spending time with people... discussing the matters that matter... not on our agenda but their's. Ideally this should be done face-to-face but if it can't we should still seek to connect.

Be there for someone today!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

"In Praise of Fundamentalism" by Angus Mathie

The following post was written by my dad, Angus Mathie, in response to the Seth Godin quote I referred to a few days ago...
In Praise of Fundamentalism.

I write this piece with a very clear desire not to offend anyone intentionally and with, I believe, a reasonable understanding of the background to the Author’s point of view. I do not take pleasure at all in acts, behaviours and opinions past and present which, in my opinion, bring grave discredit to the Name of Christ. Although in recent days more attention has been focused on the “religious right” in the USA, I am also aware of the imperfect past of religion in Europe. Also, the term fundamentalist is used in print and broadcast media in a pejorative and highly inaccurate way because we think in boxes and it has conveniently been linked with militancy.

My basic concern is that words become distorted in meaning through inaccurate use. Also, we are using terms for each other as Christians, which mirrors the world’s use of words to club each other, especially if we differ. I am not being pedantic but making a plea that we not only realize the true meaning of words that we use but also as part of our general desire to listen and learn, we accurately dissect and critically examine what is being said and done in the Name of Christ. Deal with the issue yet love the individual.

Let me throw some definitions at you to help you to see what I am saying. Each one is from The Collins English Dictionary, Sixth Edition 2003, ISBN 0-00-710982-2:

Fundamentalism: Noun.
1: Christianity (esp. among certain Protestant sects) the belief that every word of the Bible is divinely inspired and therefore true.
3. Strict adherence to the fundamental principles of any set of beliefs. Fundamentalist – Noun, adjective. [p658]

Evangelical: Christianity. Adjective.
1. of, based upon, or following from the Gospels.
2. denoting or relating to any of certain Protestant sects or parties, which emphasize the importance of personal conversion and faith in atonement through the death of Christ as a means of salvation.
4. an upholder of evangelical doctrines or a member of an evangelical sect or party … [p567].

In closing let me make a few statements, which deal with the above and also some misuses of the terms:
  • Since the age of 15, I have considered myself an evangelical fundamentalist Christian in accord with the definitions above. I would rather give my life than renounce any part.
  • I believe that, All Scripture is inspired (God-breathed) and is profitable .. [2 Timothy 3: 16]
  • In accordance with Holy Spirit provision I am a Gospel Preacher and Bible Teacher. I strive constantly and diligently to discover and present accurately the Word of God.
  • Although an old fogey, I read widely and listen carefully to people of varied backgrounds and points of view.
  • I have no desire in any way to harm another.
Even in Churches similar to the one I belong to, I recognize vastly differing points of view. I am used to descriptions of one wing as strict or conservative and the other as open or liberal. I try to learn from all though I may not agree with what is done or said. My only plea is that when I am marched off to the gallows as an evangelical fundamentalist Christian my fellow believers do not assist in the process.
I thank my dad for taking the time to respond in this way and welcome his contribution.

I think we need to be very careful with the use of words and I will try to adhere to a more accurate use of terms.

Let me throw in some points here...

Firstly, I have benefitted from an unbringing in the independent evangelical church tradition... and now worship within the Salvation Army tradition. To this end I do consider myself to be an evangelical too.

I do not consider myself to be an Evangelical Christian (capital "E") because that has cultural rammifications and symbolism that I do not identify with nor aspire to. I believe, according to my reading of Ephesians 4 that the church should be apostolic, prophetic, evangelical, pastoral and based on sound teaching. I see the captial "E" Evangelical church as focussing on the evangelical, pastoral and teaching to the detriment of the apostolic and prophetic. This is why I would consider myself to be post-Evangelical too... because I see the need to move beyond the boundaries that the captial "E" Evangelical church has defined.

Secondly, I have always believed that "if you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything" - this is important to me as a holistic person... not just with regards to my faith. We all have things that we consider to be fundamentals. Its not wrong to hold these as true... as long as we are prepared to look to the new and challenge them. Paul speaks of testing the spirits. Curious people need to test the spirits to ensure they are of God and of benefit before accepting them. This is the essence of wisdom.

Fundamentalism is wrong when it is closed... where no discussion is held... when no more thought is given to the subject. Fundamentalism is right when we stick to our guns once we have effectively challenged the "new thing" and found it either wanting or altered our perspective because we have found the "new thing" to be of value. I will not accept everything blindly. I will test it... chew it over... meditate on it and I will grow as a result of this.

I believe there is a difference between fundamentalism (small "f") and capital "F" Fundamentalism - the former being a fancy word for "standing for something" and the latter being an imperialistic cultural and political movement in line with Capital "E" Evangelicalism... that seeks to define what should and shouldn't be believed. I have no issue with the former - I have things that I will stand for - but have major problems with the latter.

Lastly... I got considerable benefit from Brian McLaren's great book - a generous orthodoxy - where he unpacks all the wonderous uniqueness and value of the whole Christian church... I think the Body of Christ, as a whole, has tremendous vitality and each "body part" has unique things to offer - a hand for action or a foot for travel, for example.

However, I do not think any one part of this Body has the right to speak for the body or consider itself more important than the remaining body parts. I think for too long one body part has sought to define the body in an exclusive, fixed and rigid manner - capital "FE's" Fundamentalist Evangelicals - and I think there is a backlash against this arrogance.

So when I speak in terms of fundamentalists or Evangelicals in a negative way... its the capital FE's that I am referring to. However, I do believe the body of Christ needs all aspects of the body... including the capital FE's.

I also do not wish to have the arrogance to tar everyone with the same brush... people are different. Just as we need to watch our phraseology... we need to be careful not to fall into the same trap as the people we are being critical of.

I welcome my dad's contribution for putting an alternative slant on this and challenging me on the use of terminology. He has made me think... and I welcome the discussion.

I love the colour orange (49/365)

Sent from my iPhone

Posted via email from headphonaught's posterous

Growing on me :: Benga & Coki :: 'Night'

Not sure what to say other than this tune is growing on me... and the videos nice too.

Funny :: What happens when you point and yell "BANG!" on Osaka streets?

Thanks to Garr Reynolds for the heads up to this video. Please watch then read his comments on his blog.

creative genius...

Inspiring. Thanks to Stewart Cutler for posting this TED video.

Remembering... Rev Al & Xena Spooner

Rev Al & Xena Spooner, originally uploaded by Headphonaught.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Sit on me

Sit on me, originally uploaded by Headphonaught.

This is cool :: High Five Escalator :: Improv Everywhere

Rob gives 2,000 high fives standing by the escalator during the morning subway commute in NYC. Read on at the Improv Everywhere site. Nice!

Maybe if we worked harder on our own lives...

/..Why does the Evangelical community seem so preoccupied with pointing out what they perceive to be the sins of others? Why this commitment to the role of morality police, lambasting everyone with their narrow interpretations of Scripture? It seems their selective view of holiness is far more important than how we actually treat our fellow human beings. Maybe if we worked harder on our own lives, focused on how we are treating others, a more holistic holiness could finally exude from our lives../
SEX-CRAZED: America’s Christian Subculture by Adele Sakler

Adele is a dear friend of mine and I was proud to read her first piece in the ooze. It will be a challenging piece for some people... but one that challenges in right ways. Check it out and join the discussion over there.

Surfin' the 'tinterweb... so you don't have to #9

Some more links for you to chew on... First few have a twitter theme:

I really like Richard Millington's blog :: feverbee. He posts on building/developing communties and I have taken a lot from this post on 5 lessons on building community from Twitter's experience... To summarise his points:
  1. Don’t Set Restrictive Objectives. If the Twitter team had tried to guide their community to set objectives, they would have killed the business.
  2. Spam-Free Philosophy. Friends of the creators joined, then their friends, and more people. No-one spammed strangers to join.
  3. Ignore the Media. No-one pitched the press to write about it. Instead they grew until they became too important for the media to ignore.
  4. Low Costs. The cheaper it is to launch the community, the less the need for instant results and profits.
  5. Don’t Ask For Anything. They didn’t make us jump through any hoops or try to make money directly from us.
Valuable insights worth considering when seeking to start something new... especially, in the context of this blog, a new expression of church.

Richard, in the above post, links to this post on the origins of Twitter...
Our board was not feeling optimistic, and we were forced to reinvent ourselves../

I’ll never forget the family-friendly feeling of that day. We all knew that we were going to change the world with this thing that no one else understood. That day stands out in memory as the deep breath before a baby’s first cry../
Makes for great reading.

Last on the Twitter tip... there was a nice wee article on the BBC News website about Twitter.
/..after celebrity endorsements and pictures of miraculous plane landings on the Hudson, the Muggles are coming, and what's more, Twitter is changing as a result - I think for the better../

On a different tangent... I got really excited when I saw this right up for the six month MBA on psfk...
/..Seth Godin is running an alternative MBA program that has, at its heart, a new vision of learning about being a businessperson. Nine participants are currently learning about entrepreneurship, freelancing and marketing in a practical, real world apprenticeship with Godin rather than going the traditional business school route../
Boy would I love to be one of those nine.

I am so grateful to psfk for their ongoing inspiration. They link to some awesome sites. The SAMBA (six month MBA) blog (as mentioned above) is one such awesome site. A real source of inspiration, influence, challenge and encouragement. Check out their 999 business ideas for example... whilst remembering:
Ideas are a dime a dozen. The money is in the execution.
Brilliant. This is an important lesson that I need to learn... I have loads of ideas but I'm not so good with the execution... and need help in transforming these ideas into something valuable.

Lastly... I love the Beatles and enjoy the lyrics to their songs. I found The Beatles Lyrics Archive to be a fab resource... ideal for 7,000th tweets and more.

Olly (Warholized)

Olly (Warholized), originally uploaded by Headphonaught.

Loving... the new Simpsons title sequence

Nice. When it comes to TV families... I like the Ingalls AND the Simpsons :-)

Monday, February 16, 2009

Good hunting at the Fort...

Picked up a couple of nice things at the Fort this evening... Went there with my Folks and the we'ans to give Olly some piece and quiet (she had some cards to make) and give me something new to look at.

The magazines in Borders were a bust... can anyone recommend an interesting / inspiring magazine? MONOCLE rocks but thats about it... well that and MOJO (most of the time).

What I did like was the Starbucks tumbler and the Chinese notebook (above) I found.

I've wanted to convert to a tumbler for a while now... I want to reduce and reuse as much as I can... and I am also "tight" - Starbucks reduce the cost of a cuppa by 25p if you bring your own cup - I only need 23 cuppas to break even! so it'll start paying for itself in a month or so. I like the graphic too... its my kind of abstract.

Thing is... I had a d'oh moment. You get a free cuppa when you purchase the tumbler. I didn't know this when I bought a round for my peeps... and then ended up with a second chai latte (and a nagging caffiene headache) when I bought the tumbler.

Recommend you get one: save money... and do your bit to reduce your impact. Makes sense to me... although you can get cheaper cups.

As for the notebook... it was £1.00 in the Paperchase sale... half the pages are lined... half the pages are blank... and it has these interesting Chinese Propagandaist graphics front and back. Will be interesting to pull that out in "church circles" :-)

Picture posted with LifeCast... thoughts added later.

Escudo en Punta Arenas

Escudo en Punta Arenas, originally uploaded by salvacionista.

"Sangre Y Fuego"

Saturday, February 14, 2009

fundamentalism really has nothing to do with religion...

“A fundamentalist is a person who considers whether a fact is acceptable to his religion before he explores it. As opposed to a curious person who explores first and then considers whether or not he wants to accept the ramifications. A curious person embraces the tension between his religion and something new, wrestles with it and through it, and then decides whether to embrace the new idea or reject it. Curious is the key word. [It has] nothing to do with organized religion. It has to do with a desire to understand, a desire to try, a desire to push whatever envelope is interesting. [...] What we’re seeing is that fundamentalism really has nothing to do with religion and everything to do with an outlook regardless what your religion is.
Seth Godin as quoted by Blake Huggins

Made me think... I guess I've always been a curious person. Feel vindicated now. Thanks Blake... and Seth.

Loving me some Yellow Submarine...

I thoroughly enjoyed watching the Yellow Submarine on Friday afternoon. It is a film "of its time" but still stands proud and tall as an awesome, if somewhat surreal, piece of animation.

Here's a wee taster... enjoy!

Today's Wallpaper...

Posted with LifeCast

I Love You!

Posted with LifeCast

Friday, February 13, 2009

Freedom of Speech... (Update)

ekklesia have an interesting perspective on the Jasmine case I mentioned yesterday.

First off, its almost as if the Head had read my post:
Mr Read, the headteacher, explained: "We have 271 children in our school from a diversity of backgrounds... We encourage children to discuss their beliefs. What we do not condone is one child frightening a six-year-old with the prospect of 'going to hell' if she does not believe in God."

He added: "“We are a very, very open school and are in no way intimidating people. Unfortunately the context of the conversation between the two girls had a religious nature, but it could have been over any issue. When one pupil is upset by another and is crying, we take action.

“In absolutely no way are we trying to suppress discussion or make it difficult for pupils to discuss or express faith.
We then have a very astute observation from Simon Barrow of ekklesia:
"Before shouting 'persecution' Christians need to reflect much more seriously on how they would feel if their children received similar treatment by non-believers or those of other faiths, and the school tolerated it.

"The issue here seems to be that one young child frightened another. It is surely right that behaviour of this kind is respectfully challenged. I am sure the great majority of Christian parents will want to encourage children to speak with love and respect, rather than condemnation, towards others."
Its all about love and respect... not condemnation!

It would appear that the media isn't picking up on the fact Jasmine was wrong... but running with a "persecution" story to get people all excited and angry. Which, in turn, questions the ideals of free speech. It can only truly work if we are presented with all the facts and can debate them in a respectful manner.

Are we armed with all the facts?

I trust the BBC. I don't always like or get what they do... but I do trust their news service. Their news did report the "going to hell" comment. What worries me is that, according to this press release from ekklesia, not all news sources are making mention of what is the crux of the matter.


Surfin' the 'tinterweb... so you don't have to #8

Hey... its Friday the 13th... and these links have nothing to do with Friday the 13th or scary things in general. I am a big wuss, afterall...

I love "found sound" and I particularly liked the Soundtransit project because it takes found sounds, contextualises them and then packages them up for reference. Basically, you choose a "from" and a "to" location and it creates a found sound mp3 of your journey. I thought the Glasgow sounds were quite distinctive of ol' Sauchie herself.

Thanks to notcot #18,891.

I thought Nikki's Modern Proverbs as shown in my modern metropolis were very funny and thoughtprovoking (as all good humour is).

Thanks to notcot #18,865.

I thought this post from Chung Dha was interesting and an inpirational take on promo flyers.
This is not that new but at the moment there allot of companies using this method to promote their company. However this is actually only possible for countries where there is a cycling culture like the Netherlands. I actually like this marketing because they actually give something usefull, then just spreading a flyers which end up in the trash or on the ground after a few feet's when it is received. These saddle protectors they put over your saddle , are great because they are useful because they keep your saddle dry during stormy and snowy weathers.
It highlights the need to adapt to prevalent culture to be effective in promoting whatever it is you are promoting... and demonstrates potential longevity of promotional item if something useful/practical is created for distribution. Nice.

Thanks to notcot #18,845.

I would love to go snowboarding... and Coolhunting's gear review for their recent trip to the Crested Butte mountain resort is pretty special.

I've always fancied a wee snowboard trip... and am intrigued to see if you could amass the right gear for such a trip from charityshops with the help of discount stores like TKMaxx and secondhand-me-downs. Hmmm...

Thanks to swissmiss for the heads up to this fab post by Emily Chang on getting things done using Twitter. Its a must read for inhabitants of the Twitterverse.

In closing... a couple of podcasts worth your time and attention:

First off, we have the fab Homebrewed Christianity podcast who have remembered Darwin's birthday. Always challenging in the best possible ways. Nice one guys.

I then have a cheeky wee plug for the Something Beautiful podcast with the second part of the Vanderburg's interview. I sat this one out. In fact, I sat it out in Nando's and Starbucks with Olly, the we'ans, Susan and Scott... and was grateful to Stewart for picking it up. I dread to think what insults and insinuations I have coming to me :-)

So yeah... that's me. Enjoy. Check the posts out and check out the source blogs too for further inspiration.

What's in my bag? (44/365)

What's in my bag? (44/365), originally uploaded by Headphonaught.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Freedom of Speech...

A couple of things have made me consider the freedom of speech within the UK today.

First off, we have Dutch politician Geert Wilders being banned from the UK.

We then have the story of Jasmine Cain and her so called "religious intolerance".

Both have distrubed me... because it seems the norm nowadays to silence people we don't agree with or at least discredit them. What also disturbs me is that Jasmine's mother is under disciplinary procedings because she spoke out against the situation and sought help from her church (someone from her church received her email and alerted the Head of Jasmine's school).

I believe in freedom of speech. I see it as a fundamental pillar in our society. We all have the right to believe/think what we want and to express what we believe/think in a manner that is respectful to others.

Please note that I say respectful to others... hatred is not acceptable.

Just as much as we should be free to express our opinion, we should have the freedom to challenge the beliefs/opinions of others. It is through debate and consensus... again, in a manner that is respectful to others.

Here I feel is the key to why I have been upset with these two random stories... where is the debate and where is the respect?

I have no desire for Geert Wilders' film to be shown but neither am I afraid of it. I believe Islam has been tarred by the brush of a few madmen and he is jumping on this with both feet... but then again, I can't fully form my opinion of his error because I haven't seen the film - the UK Government have, in essence, quashed any debate and have, singlehandedly, given the Far Right another martyr... another hero silenced by "the man".

Crazy ideas are shown up in the light of debate. That's the way to defeat the kind of nonsense and hate being spouted today. We need to educate and inform with evidence, not silence people because we don't agree with them.

As for Jasmine... what get's me is the comment from her Head:
"This is not an issue about Christianity, it is about religious intolerance."
No, sorry, this is about Christianity because it is the religion you are claiming to be intolerant. If you don't believe in the things Jasmine is speaking of then say so... say to the student she spoke to that this is one belief of which there are many. Do not tar a wee lassie with the "intolerant" brush just because you don't agree with her. Show her some respect... and don't silence her. Use her opinion as a point of discussion and talk through the various perspectives.

Oh and why is her parent being disciplined? For speaking out? For having concern for her child and expressing that to people who she thought could be trusted? That for me is the true disgrace here.

Personally, a we'an shouldn't be talking about hell... its out of context and is a scary idea. People shouldn't be scared into an understanding of God... people should be loved for who they are. In this regard, the wee lassie was wrong for what she said... but her treatment... the way she's been handled is an absolute disgrace.

Freedom of speech, it would seem, is only working for those people who wish to control the speech of others. Political correctness, when done in a respectful manner, does work... but in the way it is being exercised just now... it is a disgrace.

2001 A Space Odyssey + Orbital's Halcyon


2001 A Space Odyssey

I finally got round to watching 2001 A Space Odyssey. I wont even attempt to define what its all about... ideas of death and rebirth... of travel and limits... just seem small in comparison with the grandeur of this film.

I will, however, rave on about how it is a visual and aural delight.

The cinematographer is simply breathtaking. Unique. Enhanced by a tight attention to detail. The realism of space travel is remarkable - the quiet of space and the effects of gravity are reproduced with startling realism. The design of the sets was also fantastic. You could talk for a long time on the different chairs used or the computer consoles.

The "trip" at the end of the film is as intriguing and beguiling as it is scary and disconcerting... truly a cinematic paradox:

The sound is a wonderful treat too. The ambient noise adds to the experience. The breathing, for example, is extremely disconcerting but amplifies the experience of being in a spacesuit.

The music is a real pleasure out of context (the soundtrack contains some of the best orchestral music ever made)... but... in the context of the film the music enhances the cinematographery and creates a synergistic marriage of beauty and elegance that has no real parallel other than John Williams work with Star Wars.

As an aside... the music, as it appears in the film, is as follows:
  • Overture :: "Atmospheres" :: Gyorgy Ligeti
  • Main Title :: "Also Sprach Zarathustra" :: Richard Strauss
  • Monolith 1 :: "Requiem" :: Gyorgy Ligeti
  • "The Blue Danube (excerpt)" :: Johann Strauss
  • Monolith 2 :: "Lux Aeterna" :: Gyorgy Ligeti
  • "Gayane Ballet Suite (Adagio)" :: Aram Khachaturian
  • Jupiter & Beyond :: more from "Requiem", "Atmospheres" & "Adventures" :: Gyorgy Ligeti
  • Main Title :: "Also Sprach Zarathustra" :: Richard Strauss
  • Credits :: "The Blue Danube" :: Johann Strauss
Truly a wonderful film in the most holistic of ways. Loved it.

Dear Friends (42/365)

Dear Friends (42/365), originally uploaded by Headphonaught.

Spent a lovely couple of hours with Susan & Scott Dunn. Met up at Nando's in Xscape followed by a wee coffee at Starbucks in Braehead. Good times!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Loving me some TV On The Radio...

a massive oversimplification...

I thought this article [ Taking the ‘Youth’ out of Youth Culture :: psfk.com ] was challenging and something worth sharing. I am friends with a number of people who work with in "youth" ministry and thought this might be a valuable perspective.
/..the term ‘youth,’ when referring to an entire generation (or two), is a massive oversimplification.

No more can you generalize the varied actions of adults as being part of an ‘adult culture’ can you generalize the behaviors of youth as being reflective of a ‘youth culture.’ Where adults are given any number of demographics to fit into, based on age, class, gender, race, or lifestyle, young people are predominantly still dumped into the graffiti-lined bucket of ‘youth.’ ../
The young people I come into contact with on a regular basis are a diverse and varied group of people... who do exhibit some signs of similarity but thats more to do with the spatial proximity subgrouping that they belong to than anything else. To bring them all under the term "youth" is one thing... but to assume that they are all participants in "youth culture" is something else. They have their own cultures that they are part of... they straddle multiple defining points with a deftness that is inspirational.

I think the issue here is one of oversimplification and it is a huge one at that. It is not solely down to how adults look at younger people... but how we, as people, look at others who are different from us. Categorising any person by age is a foolish undertaking.

I'll be 35 in August and wonder what that actually means. To be honest, it means nothing. I have a degree of stability that comes from my age but in terms of my passions, interests, obsessions, fears, hopes... they are pretty unique to me and mine. I am a product of the multiple cultures that have built me... and an ongoing participant in the multiple cultures that I continue to exist within.

At the end of the day... we need to see people for their humanity and not as the labels we place on them. We are adept at placing labels on people... using them to categorise and position... instead of appreciating a person for who they are and for what they bring to the salad bowl that is our shared life... our unique subcultural grouping in which we participate.

Its all fine and well reading about the juciness of a tomato but until we experience its succulence and flavour then this knowledge is worthless. This is the same with people... we can label people all we want... but until we experience their particular flavour then these labels are worthless. We need to move beyond labels and into experience... into an appreciation of the uniqueness that each and everyone of us has.

Afterall, are we not all created in the image of God? Are we not worth getting to know more?

Thanks psfk for another thoughtprovoking article.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Each and every one of us will be paramount in our own way

/..My sessions on Creative Leadership and Youth Culture were off the record, but what I can tell you is this: There are some incredibly savvy young people moving the needle across the board, and we need more of them. We simply can’t depend on the old guard to fix things. They’re too busy looking backwards, analyzing where they screwed up in the first place to see the future. Each and every one of us will be paramount in our own way — whether it’s solving the financial crisis, climate change, or making the world as a whole a better place, it’s going to be fresh thinking and innovation that saves the day.
Josh Spear contemplating his time at World Economic Forum in Davos.

The line that caught my attention is that each and every one of us will be paramount in our own way. I can't agree more. We all have our role to play. The issue is no longer about what role we play... but whether or not we are playing it. Its no longer about uniformity... we can't just fall in line and follow slavishly what has gone before. We need the imagination of diversity... each person doing their bit. If you are not doing your bit then that's where we have an issue! Unity comes when we all pull our weight... when we all contribute... participate in making something better. Are you pulling your weight?

Thanks Josh for making me think!

Saturday, February 07, 2009

iPhone wallpapers :: 1st Corinthians 13

Been playing about with wordle.net and created a couple of iPhone wallpapers that are based on 1st Corinthians 13 (The Message translation).

If you like them & have an iPhone... please feel free to download. If you do, please leave a comment or take a screenshot.

1corinth13 wordle (iphone)
Download 1st Corinthian 13 #1

1corinth13 wordle 2 (iphone)
Download 1st Corinthian 13 #2

My thanks to wordle.net for words pretty.

a wordle picture :: all the tracks I listened to on the 4th February...

Image created using wordle.net

I created a wordle picture from all the tracks I listened to on the 4th February... I think it makes an interesting graphic.


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