There are plenty of Silicon Valley, California, stories that are worth telling. You can tell a story that goes back a generation, about Silicon Valley as the land of the engineers, the people who tinker and hack and iterate and refactor. There may be no place on the planet where smarts can take you farther than on this little peninsula—especially technical smarts, the ability to harness physics and math to human needs and desires. Technology at its best seems friction-free, and Silicon Valley is a place where the world seems pliable beyond our ancestors' wildest imaginations.
You can go further back and talk about the '49ers, the ones who converged on northern California during the first Gold Rush, leaving everything behind in hopes of striking a seam of abundance—a story that still seems relevant more than 160 years later. The gold is gone, but the sudden and arbitrary lightning strikes of riches are still here—neighbors in identical houses with similar jobs who end up with three or six zeroes of difference in their wealth. You may have to be fantastically hardworking and absurdly gifted to enter this lottery, but it's a game of chance all the same.
I'm here partly to listen for the echoes of these stories—but I'm also here for a different reason. I'm wondering what it's like to be fully immersed in technology and possibility and fortunes dangling within reach—all while following a first-century rabbi who lived the fullest human life ever lived, without a single piece of technological magic. If you have a dream, Silicon Valley is the place where you come to build it. I'm wondering what you build if the gospel has shaped your dreams.
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