20130613

Mormon Sex Prep

From what I've heard, it is a lot like Jewish sex prep.

What the hell is sex prep? Sex prep is when the community elders educate the about-to-be-newlyweds about how to consummate their marriage.

That sure sounds like a fun conversation.

Is that better than allowing mainstream Amerikan pornography educate them?

Does any of this seem right to you?

20130612

My letter to AZ leaders RE university funding

I am writing to urge you to support full parity and performance funding
for the universities in the final State budget.

As your constituent, I am counting on your support.

We must address the funding disparity among Arizona's three universities
once and for all by supporting ASU's appropriation request.

Can I count on your support for full and performance parity funding to be
included in the final State budget?

Thank you for your consideration of this issue.

Sincerely,

Walden

I recently read the book Walden.

Walden


Walden is an American book written by noted transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau. The work is part personal declaration of independence, social experiment, voyage of spiritual discovery, satire, and manual for self-reliance.

I loved it. It was moving, inspiring me to live my life. Check it out.

20130611

A day without Christianity: The Natural World

In a world without Christianity, we would appreciate the natural beauty all around us. We would spend time in detailed study of the natural world learning everything that we possibly could learn.

Perhaps, someday soon, this will be a reality.

20130523

The Land of the Free, the Home of the Brave

Today I wanted to take a very brief moment to honor the courage and bravery that some of our elected officials display. When it was his turn to open the Arizona House of Representatives with the daily prayer, Democratic Rep. Juan Mendez of Tempe said this:




Most prayers in this room begin with a request to bow your heads. I would like to ask you not to bow your heads. I would like to ask that you take a moment to look around the room at all of the men and women here, in this moment, sharing together this extraordinary experience of being alive and of dedicating ourselves to working toward improving the lives of the people of our state.

This room in which there are many challenging debates, many moments of tension, of ideological division, of frustration. But this is also a room where, as my Secular Humanist tradition stresses, by the very fact of being human, we have much more in common than we have differences. We share the same spectrum of potential for care, for compassion, for fear, for joy, for love.

Carl Sagan once wrote, 'For small creatures such as we, the vastness is bearable only through love.' There is, in the political process, much to bear. In this room, let us cherish and celebrate our shared humanness, our shared capacity for reason and compassion, our shared love for the people of our state, for our Constitution and for our democracy— and let us root our policymaking process in these values that are relevant to all Arizonans regardless of religious belief or nonbelief. In gratitude and in love, in reason and in compassion, let us work together for a better Arizona.

As a voting constituent I am honored and inspired by his words.


In closing, I am unsure why there is even a daily prayer at all. I had understood that there was a separation of church and state. Maybe that only applies to the non-government areas of our community?

20130521

My favorite TED Talks

Here is a short list of my favorite TED Talks. Enjoy!


Martin Seligman: The new era of positive psychology #TED : on.ted.com/dYfN

Martin Seligman talks about psychology -- as a field of study and as it works one-on-one with each patient and each practitioner. As it moves beyond a focus on disease, what can modern psychology help us to become?



Jane McGonigal: Gaming can make a better world #TED : on.ted.com/hZgQ

Games like World of Warcraft give players the means to save worlds, and incentive to learn the habits of heroes. What if we could harness this gamer power to solve real-world problems? Jane McGonigal says we can, and explains how.



Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi: Flow, the secret to happiness #TED : on.ted.com/tCRP

Mihaly Czikszentmihalyi asks, "What makes a life worth living?" Noting that money cannot make us happy, he looks to those who find pleasure and lasting satisfaction in activities that bring about a state of "flow."



John Wooden: the difference between winning and succeeding #TED : on.ted.com/cYc8

With profound simplicity, Coach John Wooden redefines success and urges us all to pursue the best in ourselves. In this inspiring talk he shares the advice he gave his players at UCLA, quotes poetry and remembers his father's wisdom.



Derek Sivers: How to start a movement #TED : on.ted.com/iZd3

With help from some surprising footage, Derek Sivers explains how movements really get started. (Hint: it takes two.)



Benjamin Zander: The transformative power of classical music #TED : on.ted.com/aYiF

Benjamin Zander has two infectious passions: classical music, and helping us all realize our untapped love for it -- and by extension, our untapped love for all new possibilities, new experiences, new connections.



Dan Pink: The puzzle of motivation #TED : on.ted.com/fZUZ

Career analyst Dan Pink examines the puzzle of motivation, starting with a fact that social scientists know but most managers don't: Traditional rewards aren't always as effective as we think. Listen for illuminating stories -- and maybe, a way forward.



Ken Robinson says schools kill creativity #TED : on.ted.com/jZj9

Sir Ken Robinson makes an entertaining and profoundly moving case for creating an education system that nurtures (rather than undermines) creativity.



Simon Sinek: How great leaders inspire action #TED : on.ted.com/sCPw

Simon Sinek has a simple but powerful model for inspirational leadership all starting with a golden circle and the question "Why?" His examples include Apple, Martin Luther King, and the Wright brothers ...



Geoffrey Canada: Our failing schools. Enough is enough! #TED : on.ted.com/fZUY

Why, why, why does our education system look so similar to the way it did 50 years ago? Millions of students were failing then, as they are now -- and it’s because we’re clinging to a business model that clearly doesn’t work. Education advocate Geoffrey Canada dares the system to look at the data, think about the customers and make systematic shifts in order to help greater numbers of kids excel.



Dan Pallotta: The way we think about charity is dead wrong #TED : on.ted.com/jZj8

Activist and fundraiser Dan Pallotta calls out the double standard that drives our broken relationship to charities. Too many nonprofits, he says, are rewarded for how little they spend -- not for what they get done. Instead of equating frugality with morality, he asks us to start rewarding charities for their big goals and big accomplishments (even if that comes with big expenses). In this bold talk, he says: Let's change the way we think about changing the world.



Biologist Richard Dawkins urges all atheists to openly state their position -- and to fight the incursion of the church into politics and science. A fiery, funny, powerful talk.



For your viewing convenience, here is the entire set on a YouTube playlist.

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLa6iXcGEpEc8uA_BuGih2PdT_705PuGK6&feature=mh_lolz