[Noisebridge-discuss] update on the shrine!

Danny O'Brien danny at spesh.com
Sat Jul 16 07:20:14 UTC 2011

On Fri, Jul 15, 2011 at 11:21 PM, Jason Dusek <jason.dusek at gmail.com> wrote:
> It is strange that someone with a Tibetan title and robe is
> "activating" a Chinese Buddhist (and Daoist) folk diety. It is a
> little like a priest holding forth over a traditional Torah
> scroll. Not completely without sense -- the text of the Torah
> being substantially included in the Old Testament -- but very,
> very fusion. To say he "activated" it is a little ridiculous and
> imparts a strange quality to the shrine -- which is no more
> "active" than it was before he did anything with it.
> Naturally, as a follower of Zen, I would like to see Buddha's
> way more widely known. For some time, I lit incense for Saintly
> Emperor Guan and some members of Noisebridge would join me. Not
> too many did, though, and I set aside the practice. Everyone's
> karma is different. For those who love temples, there are
> temples.

I think this is probably the key point here. The guy *has* a temple.
Actually, I think he has at least two: Macang Monastery, and Hua Zang
Si, just around the corner, also run by his group. Hua Zang Si is very
beautiful. I frankly will miss Guan Yu. I think most people had grown
to like him.

> Just the same, our community's feeling about religion is
> hypocritical and counter productive. We embrace sci-fi beliefs
> and cherish symbols of popular culture in a way that can only be
> characterized as folk religion, rejecting the symbols of other
> cultures and times in the manner of provincial extremists.

I don't think you can gloss over the whole our community that way (not
anymore, too many people -- and not even in Ancient Times, when we had
long discussion about Guan Yu and his appropriateness).

About the only thing I could glean consensus on was that the whole
Church-clearing and  proselytising was getting pretty irritating and
unsettling to a lot of people, and everyone seemed to agree that this
stuff was better off taking place at Free School (and if there was
some disagreement about that, it came from the Free School, who were
probably sitting down the road going: hey, you know what, those guys
have a SHRINE over there).

I know what you mean about pop cult symbols, but honestly, I think if
we had a bunch of ultra-serious Jedis clean out  Church to erect some
carbonite they'd dug out of the lasercutter room, tempers would have
begun to fray by now.

Actually, you're right, maybe that would have taken a lot longer.


> --

> Jason Dusek
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