San Francisco is a Madhouse

San Francisco is a crazy, pot‐loving place with poor public health standards.

On a non‐Stanford related note, this area is a madhouse. San Francisco is planning to vote on whether to grow pot (marijuana) on public lands. This is because Proposition 215 legalizing medicinal marijuana hasn’t flown at all with the federal government. I suppose the city figures that if they grow the pot on public lands the DEA is less likely to come in and arrest government employees.

Advocates say that this legislation has the additional benefit of providing job training for the unemployed. Training unemployed people to grow and distribute drugs just doesn’t seem like a helpful social strategy to me…

This, of course, is the same city that just now made it illegal to poop in public, and the decision was hotly contested. No joke.

In my mind, not pooping in public is just basic courtesy (not to mention good public health policy).

Stanford Hosts Major Sporting Events

In another demonstration of Stanford’s worldwide influence, Stanford just hosted the 2002 World Pentathalon Championships and is currently hosting the Bank of the West tennis championship featuring players such as Venus Williams, Monica Seles,and Anna Kournikova.

To top it all off, Stanford will be the location of several of the 2012 Olympic games, should San Francisco win its bid to host them. In particular, swimming, diving and archery, track and field, softball, badminton and the pentathlon. Plus Stanford would be the site of the opening and closing ceremonies. Read a related article here.
Sweet!

Know Any Christian Entrepeneurs?

A link to a fascinating article about the responsibilities of Christian businesspeople on Pastors.com

I just ran across this neat article on Pastors.com called Christian Entrepeneurs Should Finance Kingdom Work. Love the article, but he didn’t list the names and phone numbers of any Christian entrepeneurs. 🙂

It sort of reminds me of the content on The Haversham Leadership Forum, although he also focuses on specific ways in which Christian businesspeople should be different from their secular counterparts (and seems to be developing an online church for Christian businesspeople. Sadly, he doesn’t list any contacts either. 😉

Supper with Stanford/MIT Physicist Ray Cowan

Our enlightening conversation with an illustrious member of the Stanford research community.

We had supper tonight with Stanford physicist Dr. Ray Cowan (also check his work homepage). He’s another person God has connected us with. Ray is on the advisory board for Stanford Chi Alpha, and is a nice guy to boot.

I say he’s a Stanford physicist, but it’s a little more complicated than that: he’s actually paid by M.I.T. yet works at the Stanford Linear Accelerator. Evidently there are only three or so real sites in the world you can do high‐energy particle physics at (SLAC is one, Fermi is another, and CERN is the last of the really big ones). So many of the people who work at these research facilities are actually research physicists for institutions in other parts of the world. Interesting, no?

Ray’s a pretty neat guy: his hobbies include reading, geology, ham radio, local history, generic outdoorsy type activities, and serving as a volunteer reserve police officer when he gets the chance (he’s had to stop that because of his research schedule).

Also, Ray shared a unique method of calculating a 25% tip with me. Multiply the pre‐tax bill by 10 and divide it in half 3 times. That comes out to be the same as 10/8 (or 125%) and is pretty easy to calculate. How cool!

Finally, Ray informed that it would indeeed be possible to cook a chicken using the Stanford dish, so I’ll have to pass that on to Andrew and Kwasi as an add‐on to our discussion about it.

When Imitating Christ Is a Bad Idea

Mark Galli has a neat little editorial in Christiantiy Today talking about
when imitating Christ is superficial theology, using the book What Would Jesus Eat? as an sterling example of good intentions gone loopy.

While I have to concede his basic point (what would Jesus eat?????), I think he dismisses the concept too quickly. Dallas Willard and John Ortberg (who doesn’t seem to have a website) do marvelous jobs of demonstrating how it is possible to imitate Christ in a thoughtful, productive manner. In fact, I highly recommend Dallas Willard’s book The Spirit of the Disciplines as a life‐changing guide to the imitation of Christ.

Colleges Teach Truth Is Relative

75% of students say that their professors teach that moral truth is relative.

According to a survey sponsored by the National Association of Scholars, 3 out of 4 college students report that their professors teach that morality is determined by individual and cultural differences (as opposed to universal moral principles to which we are all accountible). The poll was conducted by Zogby, and the detailed results are available here.

This study only underlines the urgency for campus ministry and for solid, intellectually responsible discipleship!

A Mystery Worshiper Visits Stanford’s Memorial Church

What happens when a Mystery Worshiper from the Ship of Fools visits Stanford’s Memorial Church? Read on!

Thanks to the Stanford Christian Faculty for finding this funny review of Stanford’s Memorial Church.

This is part of the Mystery Worshiper series at the Ship of Fools website, wherein someone walks into a church service and then posts an online review of it.

I mention the link because
a) it amused me and
b) I think it reveals something about the state of religious life at Stanford.

Christian Faculty at Stanford

There are plenty of Christian faculty here at Stanford. Don’t believe me? Check out the Stanford Christian Faculty Fellowship directory. Interestingly enough, the majority of them appear to be in the physical and life sciences. Stuff that in your theological pipe and smoke it…

Be sure to check out The Journey With Jesus, a set of musings by Dan Clendenin about what Jesus would look like in contemporary society.download night on earth divx

Meeting More Students

The night I met Kwasi Adu and Nathan Mitchell.

God has really been opening up some neat doors for us. We just had one of Andrew’s friends, Kwasi Adu (rhymes with greasy shampoo) over for supper. Kwasi is from Ghana, and his name means “Sunday.” Evidently every Ghanian (or at least every male Ghanian) is named for the day of the week on which they were born. How interesting…

Anyway, Kwasi and I have read a lot of the same books, so we had a really good time talking. He, Andrew, and I also had a fun time trying to figure out whether or not you could cook a chicken with a sufficient density of radio waves. We decided that you probably couldn’t actually cook it, but you could do some pretty unhealthy things to it.

Afterwards, I gave Kwasi a ride home and met one of his roommates, Nathan, who seemed open to checking out Chi Alpha. How cool!