Friday, December 14, 2007

The Greenhouse

Maquarie Centre.. Christmas time. Everyone is plugged in to their Bluetooths or Mobiles or Mp3 players or Palm Pilots. In my case -- I'm plugged into this little internet cafe-island thing in 'The loft'. There is a huge shaded glass roof above me which makes me feel like I'm some sort of exotic plant in a greenhouse. Actually no.. I'm rather more like a plain garden-variety sort of plant who's just visiting.. and is sitting in a Greenhouse full of exotic city-slicker plants..

Actually it really feels like some sort of jungle in here. All the people, noises, smells... Shops shamelessly displaying their pretty colours and attracting customers with alluring mating calls... Anyway I don't know how I can have been wandering around for an hour and a half still NOT having found the ice skating rink... Thats seriously annoying.

I just visited a new store called 'T2' and it's AMAZING! Never have I seen so much tea and tea related things in my life. I'm currently drinking a sample of this cool African Tea that I can't remember the name of. It's in a small bright orange cardboard cup.

This is a silly blog post. I'd tell you all some of the things I'm overhearing people talk about around me but everyone is plugged in.. as I mentioned earlier.


Thursday, December 13, 2007

This is the Machine.

"Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah" - Jono

I'm glad these stirring words are here in my premier Blog. Who has heard of the word Contextualisation? Post Modernism? How about 'the looove revolution'? These are some things we're discussing in the lecture I am typing this in today.

I'll set the scene...
The air conditioner and fans are both running. Joseph gets up to turn off the air conditioner and 10 minutes later Moris gets up to turn it back on. People pick at the crud under their fingernails with their pen lids while others doodle on the bottom of their pages.. A guy in the corner of the room wears a mysterious black eye. I catch a few snippets from lecture..

Jon - the lecturer - 'Hey you can tell me what happens chemically in my body when I'm in love... But I'm the one experiencing it.' Post modernism... Authority lies in experience.

'So according to Post-modernists..Ultimate Authority.. who can have ultimate authority over everything I do?'
'Yeah! Me.. Because no one else has had the same experience as me.. We end up saying 'Whats true for you is true for you, whats true for me is true for me.. You can't tell me how to live because you haven't had my experience. That's essentially society's attitude. We've rejected institution.. If every ones experience is different you possibly use the insitutional-conveyor-belt method to teach everyone. Instead of institutions.. Post-moderns crave relationships and community. Unity in diversity.'
And earlier....
'Its all these people on the news... about the Kyoto protocol... It's just the same as the Nazi's.. Except environmental..' (This is actually something my desk mate said to me not the lecturer) ..He then said homeopaths get their degree's off the Internet.

Jon again.. 'When post-moderns look at the traditional church what do they see?'
'A building?'
'An institution?'
'They look at the traditional church and go 'It's an institution.. What other institution does it most feel like?'
'School' (I say, typing this as I speak)
'Yeah! You sit in the pews and have your sermon Sandwich... Sing a couple of songs.. The climax of the church service is in the sermon.. Which is what? It's feeding your head some knowledge. Who's it presented by? The minister with the qualifications.. He's got the Authority.. Theres no interaction - in fact you've actually got to stay silent. If you can do that you've got it. How do post-moderns react to that? They just leave.'

'I think I'm being a bit cynical.'

Ben's phone rings and he leaves the room to answer it.
'There's a reaction of 'wait a sec, How do I know this person out the front is trustworthy? Hey how about we have a break at 4:30?'

There's a consensus of agreement.

Please note these are detached excerpts from the lecture I'm sitting in.
'I just thought of a.. this is a bit of a side track.. but it fits in as a perfect example of the modernist church.... It's my Dad's home church St Gallen in Switzerland... It's one of those huge Cathedrals and it has 7 little alcoves.. sort of alters.. They did their masses in Latin when Dad was a kid so you didn't understand anything anyway.. But it's a fantastic consumer church.. Every 15 minutes a separate service would start at each alter.. At alter one was the 9:00 service.. 15 minutes later another would start at alter two. So you're either 7 minutes early or late for any service.. No coffee and a chat afterwards -- Just in and out.. You were a consumer.. Just part of the machine..'

'Reality t.v.. You're joining in on the experience.'

'In mission what are the implication what are the implications of experience being the really important?'

'You can show them where God was in their experiences.. You can also share your own experiences. You can combine God's story, their story and your story.. and find where those three stories connect.'

It's 4:30. Time for a cup of tea.