Saturday, November 03, 2007

Meeting for Business

Tara and I biked over to the Stark Street Meetinghouse today, headquarters for Multnomah Friends, to participate in the putting of final touches on this newly remodeled facility. I walked around with my Olympus 720, chattering with old friends, new acquaintances, letting myself savor the experience of future shock.

Mark (FreeGeek, Intel) and I had an especially interesting conversation, about the history of this Society. In thumbnail: after a period of intense persecution, Quakers become "power ins" in the business world, owing to their integrity and simplicity testimonies especially. People wanted to do business with straight shooters who didn't lie or cheat. What a concept! Mark reported FreeGeek is doing quite well these days.

However, after a lot of forks and schisms, it's not clear what happened to all that business acumen. I told Mark that I'd like to galvanize my brand of Quaker, not into proselytizing or evangelizing, into running more banks and businesses again, especially here in the Silicon Forest. Like someday we might establish some of our low key trademarked worship venues in downtown skyscrapers, with muted flatscreens showing off our colorful heritage.

As 4D Solutions CEO or whatever, I'd blend in some Islamic motifs, as I'm seeing lots of positive synergies these days, between Jihad and our Lamb's War; both are replete with alternatives to violence i.e. business strategies consistent with Quakers' peace testimony.