Worship without artificiality

I don’t know about you, but I find it so much more engaging to worship God without the artificial enhancements of sound systems and electric lighting, to worship God in more natural ways, under the open sky, with my naked feet in touch with the earth. It may sound strange to worship God this way,Continue reading “Worship without artificiality”

Islamic Iconoclasm and Facebook Selfies

From what I have read and seen I am under the understanding that Islamic art forbids lifelike portraits. So I asked some Muslims, how does that square with apparent Islamic acceptance photography, including Facebook selfies? One said, “It forbids anything that could be used as an idol, a prohibition against polytheism. Photographs and such thatContinue reading “Islamic Iconoclasm and Facebook Selfies”

Accountability in an information age

How do we hold powers accountable in situations where power is based on information asymmetries? Who is watching the watchers? This is a question I was pondering last week after reading two very different novels, one about drone warfare, one about cyber warfare, both of which pointed to the collapse of democracy in the informationContinue reading “Accountability in an information age”

The Digital Domestication of Subcultures

I stumbled upon an article about the Colonization of Subcultures this evening and thought I’d share some of the more memorable and thought provoking quotes: “[The weakness of subcultures] is that they seek to externalize their structure into digital institutions. Loose and transient P2P network institutions perhaps, but still institutions, due to their reliance onContinue reading “The Digital Domestication of Subcultures”

Neil Postman: Five Things We Need to Know About Technological Change

If you are interested in the cultural implications of computer technologies, I highly recommend reading this article from Neil Postman on “Five Things We Need to Know About Technological Change.” He sums it up as follows: “And so, these are my five ideas about technological change. First, that we always pay a price for technology;Continue reading “Neil Postman: Five Things We Need to Know About Technological Change”

Unsocial Networking

I find myself lamenting the dearth of deep conversation on the web. In an ironic sort of way, social networking seems to have made the web a lot less social. We’ve become more superficial, less reflective. Yet, sometimes slow is good. Jesus took time away from the crowds to focus on the disciples. Sometimes weContinue reading “Unsocial Networking”

More on Media

Over the holidays I found myself reading Charles P. Pierce’s “Idiot America: How Stupidity Became a Virtue in the Land of the Free” and found a number of points of resonance with Neil Postman’s “Amusing Ourselves to Death”, though in somewhat more colourful language: “’Television is an emotional medium,’ Cline explains. ‘It doesn’t do reason well.Continue reading “More on Media”