[Noisebridge-discuss] update on the shrine!

Shannon Lee shannon at scatter.com
Sat Jul 16 21:47:51 UTC 2011

I renew my call for the consecration of Danny O'Brien as Noisebridge's
Bedbug Shaman.

On Fri, Jul 15, 2011 at 10:35 PM, Danny O'Brien <danny at spesh.com> wrote:

> So, as some of you may know, the old shrine got re-activated as a working
> shrine a few days ago, and the Church classroom cleared away for meditation
> and contemplation, led by Fa Zang (Rinpoche), the guy in the buddhist monk
> robe who has been doing a lot of sewing in the craft area recently.
> Not everybody was happy with this. I was a bit personally miffed because in
> the process, the membership binders were moved. I am agnostic about almost
> everything, but in my eldritch role conferred on me by the consensus of
> Noisebridge, I really am all about the membership binders.
> So, anyway, subsequent to that, the following Noisebridginess occurred:
> 1) We found the membership binders! They are now in the black desk. I have
> updated the wiki. Yay.
> 2) The shrine was de-activated, and the chairs and tables put back in place
> in Church as a re-activated classroom.
> 3) The next day, the shrine was put back together, and Church once again
> cleared away of all other earthly furniture. Perhaps a bit gallingly for a
> prominent General and war deity, Guan Yu was relegated to a side-deity, and
> a framed postcard of another Bodhisattva put in prime position. Incense and
> pillows were now made available.
> 4) The shrine was subsequently dismantled, more forcefully. For avoidance
> of doubt, Guan Yu was put up for sale by Miloh:
> http://sfbay.craigslist.org/sfc/atq/2489669725.html
> 5) The shrine was erected and re-activated, and I believe Church cleared
> once again, before Tuesday meeting. Crutcher, as the minutes show, said
> that if it remained so prominent, "it is my personal plan to do-acrat that
> shrine to pieces with powertools tonight."
> 6) After the meeting, but prior to said do-acratic action, a gentlemen
> interceded. It was agreed that since he said that as he had a good home for
> Guan Yu away from the powertools of the unrighteous, he could take the
> shrine with him.
> 7) When I left the meeting, Guan Yu was sitting a bit forlorn at the bottom
> of the stairs, waiting his new home.
> 8) On Thursday, I bumped into the Fa Zang (Rinpoche) who was sewing. I
> apologised for my mistake about the binders, and explained some of the
> reasons why some people felt it was inappropriate to use Noisebridge and
> the shrine for active religious worship.
> Zang said that he understood that this wasn't a place for meditation. I
> said that meditation was interesting, but agreed that this probably wasn't
> a good place for lessons or explicitly religious ceremonies.
> The lama (Rinpoche is an honorific attached to lamas) told me that the
> person who took Guan Yi was one of his disciples. As his master he would
> instruct him what to do with it.
> We had an interesting chat about masters and disciples. Fa Fa Zong told me
> of the error of believing in a world without masters, and averred that if I
> didn't believe in reincarnation, I would not be a good buddhist. I said I
> was down with that, and learned some knots.
> 9) Today, Maestro mailed Al that the shrine was back up, and Church had
> been cleared of chairs and tables again. I popped down to the space. Guan
> Yi wasn't back, but three little bowls, more incense were in an otherwise
> empty Church. I spoke to Maestro and a few others. They said that folks had
> been chanting and ringing bells early in the morning. Also, and this was
> unclear, there was some rumors of people walking around ringing little
> bells also. We ascertained that at least one little bell was the
> Noisebridge dinner bell, so that was put back in the kitchen.
> 10) I grabbed hold of Jorgen from the Free School, who had just came in. He
> also expressed some exasperation with the Rinpoche. Together, we had a
> little chat with someone present who said he was a disciple of Fa Zang. He
> said that he and his master had heard that anyone could come here, and as
> long as the space was not being used, it could be used for anything.
> I said that noooo, that really this was a hackerspace, for the creative
> uses of technology.
> 10.5) I got the Rinpoche's cellphone number from his disciple. I totally
> have a real Lama in my Google Contacts now.
> 11) I called up the Rinpoche (a trusted disciple of H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha
> III), and told them that I thought we'd gone over this, and really it
> wasn't appropriate to do religious ceremonies at the space.
> Fa Zang, who became a rinpoche when three other rinpoches had omens in
> dreams about his nature as a reincarnation of a previous rinpoche, and was
> conferred with the title by His Holiness Dorje Chang Buddha III in 2009,
> hung up on me.
> 12) A few hours later, Fa Zang left me a voicemail. I have the MP3 if
> anyone wants it. It is awesome, and here is the transcript:
>    "Sir,
>    This is Fa Zang (Rinpoche). You seem to have forgotten that this
>    country was found... to things written in the Constitution. Our
>    founding forefathers promised us we would have freedom of speech,
>    and freedom of religion. You remember the things that Thomas
>    Jefferson said, about tyranny and religion?  If you don't you should
>    look it up.  What you people are doing is completely erroneous, I
>    haven't held any ceremonies there, I've simply been paying homage to
>    the teachings I listen to there. And so you are breaking your own
>    by-laws and the constitutional rights of people who come there by
>    doing what you're doing. I think you should reconsider what you're
>    doing."
> So there you go. As someone who is also a fan of the founding fathers and
> ...things written in the Constitution, I'm sensitive to issues regarding
> religion, so I've been actively seeking out someone who is okay with the
> meditating, and the incense, and the shrining, and the constantly bloody
> moving of the tables and chairs. Let me know if you want to represent the
> Rinpoche's position in this disagreement.
> In the mean time, if you agree with what is smelling to me like consensus,
> and if you see the Rinpoche in the road, or even in the space, can you ask
> him to keep the ceremonial stuff to Macang Monastery, where he lives. Or
> else some folk may start exercising their constitutional and by-law given
> rights to pay homage to Discordia, Emperor Norton and/or the Great
> Spaghetti Monster's Rites in said Monastery (1822 Eddy St, x Scott +
> Divisadero, https://foursquare.com/venue/9311185 ).
> Salut!
> Danny O'Brien (Genuine and Authorized Pope + Rinpoche Forever,
> House of the Apostles of Eris)
> d.
> PS If you haven't already, you totally should look up "Tyranny" "Religion"
> and "Thomas Jefferson" on the Internet.
> PPS Honest to god, I fucking love this place. I haven't had so much fun in
> ages.
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Shannon Lee
(503) 539-3700

"Any sufficiently analyzed magic is indistinguishable from science."
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