Bike Temple

Meeting of The Clergy — Monday night

Meeting of The Clergy, 6:30 – 8pm, Pasture’s House (old house) 60 NE Tillamook St. Monday Oct 25th

All are welcome! Come be more involved in your religion.

The basic questions — what will we do this winter?
* Find a space for worship, healing, both?
* Activites?
* Community Service
* Sects?
* Potlucks, movie nights, other respectable churchy activities?
* Playing poker online with friends at this site? Nice poker site by the way
* Readings of the Bike Plan and other canonized texts?

Beer, Tea and Chocolate provided for communion.

Yours in The Faith,
Pasture Ted

Bike Temple

Joy of Momogamous Sects, Sunday Feb 2

Join the Bike Temple on Sunday, Feb 2 for a “Joy of Monogamous Sects” ride.

We’ll be attending the “Salt and Light Lutheran Church” on NE 20th and Killingsworth.

Small inner-city churches face the problem of aging, declining congregations.  Every year, a few more of the small churches that dot our community go belly-up as the membership gets below the level that can sustain a congregation and maintain a building.

Emmanual Lutheran Church, now Salt and Light Lutheran, has taken a innovative approach to dealing with this problem.  They’ve reinvented themselves as a community center that hosts their church on Sundays.  This way, the otherwise unused classrooms can be put to a permanent alternate use, and the sanctuary and other meeting rooms can be used by the community 6 days a week.

The new organization is called “Leaven”, and has a website at

We’ll go and see the religious side of Leaven by attending the church service, then meet for snacks or tea afterwards.

Meet at Irving Park basketball court at 9:15 am to ride up to the 10:00am service.

(as an added bonus, we’ll be able to see what’s going on at the historic Baptist Church on 9th and Fremont that has been purchased by a right-leaning suburban church and has gotten some new paint).

Bike Temple

Bike Temple Grand Opening!

Brothers and Sisters, the time has come to open the doors and start healing!



After much planning and preparation the Bike Temple is ready to unveil it’s first physical home, located at the Lotus Seed Ashram on NE 9th and Going in Portland, OR. The space offers many facilities for members and bicycle believers, including access to sanctuary and meeting spaces, and our very own bicycle healing shop. The shop, which is located at basement level on the northeast corner of the building, will serve as headquarters for the Bike Temple as well as a space for members to build, repair, learn, and teach about bicycles.

Our grand event will feature bicycle-themed worship and ritual, communion, (yes… that means beer) food, and a very special blessing of the new space. We will be riding as a group to the MMR at the end, to round out this very blessed night. This event is open to the public, whether you are interested in becoming a member or are just curious about what all these weirdos are doing. Join us there!

Bike Temple

Continuing the Discussion – What is the best approach?

Thank you to everyone who has weighed in so far on the previous post in the comments, via email, and in the very impressive and thoughtful thread sparked by this discussion on the Clydesdales/ Athenas forum at I encourage everyone to read through the comments here and at Bike Forums, there have been some great ideas and words of wisdom presented. Here are a few comments that caught my eye… Christa said…

I would definitely benefit from a program such as this. I have a great bike and just need beginner rides to work on. Like, ” That way to the slight hill or here to stay flat.” I would also like to know how to get around town by bike. I am so used to the car and don’t have a clue were to start… ‘The Historian’ said…

I don’t mean to be contentious, but I don’t think there’s an honest way to draw the fat masses to cycling. You could sell it as a magic pill, I suppose, but it’s not. People ride bikes, and maintain a certain weight, because they want to.

What are your thoughts on these comments? Do you agree that there are people out there looking for a program or group that will help them overcome their hesitations or fears, or do you think that we should be leaving well-enough alone and letting people decide for themselves what they should do? Would a program or group which focuses on the overweight and obese serve to help that community or harm it?

I guess my reasoning for exploring this aspect a little further is this: I feel that if a program or group would be benificial for the community than something should happen in that direction right away. There’s no time like the present. However, I would like to fully consider what is the best way to reach out to the larger-bodied community, and if a program or group isn’t the answer, than we should be working to find out what is.
Please continue to share your thoughts. I am very greatful to those of you who already have. If anyone is interested in continuing this discusion one-on-one, feel free to contact me at the email shown on the right-hand sidebar as well.
Deacon Amos

Bike Temple

How can the cycling community reach out to the overweight and obese?

Pedalpalooza was truly an inspiring time for bicyclists in Portland, Oregon, the Bicycle Holy Land. We found religion, we toured taco shops, we danced, we played music, and we paid tribute. In times like theses, it was a refreshing oasis of contentment and togetherness. A coming together of all types of people.

One thing I couldn’t help but notice while soaking up some sun on the lawn at MCBF, however, was the stark imbalance of body types represented at this community event, specifically, how few overweight people I noticed. Sure, there were a few full-bodied folks strutting their stuff and doing a magnificent job of it, and Lord knows if it weren’t for those great people, it would be easy to say that the cycling community is a completely exclusive group, a clique only fit for the fit. But the fact is, the majority of the people who choose to ride bikes and participate in connected events, at least in this town, are obviously of the medium to small build.

I was happy to see at least one attempt to bring those of larger proportion into the fold this year with the Big Girls Ride, which used the tagline “Big girls ride bikes too so let’s go for a ride together.” It’s good to know that there are people out there aware of the need to attract and encourage overweight folks to cycle, but I think that a lot more could be done in the same vein. How about a riding club that caters to larger members of the community? One that teaches them how to choose the right rigs and equipment to accommodate their body type, that brings together those of similar build and helps them through the things that may have been keeping them off the saddle all along?

I would like to start a discussion on this matter. The fact is, I don’t think that someone with my phisycal build could actually form and lead a group like this, as I am sure that the coordination and leadership of such a project would be more appreciated by it’s members if the person doing it was of the same persuasion. But, because it’s also a rather sensitive subject for some, it’s also difficult to bring the idea up to specific people, for fear that I may be labeling them as something that they choose not to identify with.

So here are some primer questions to kick off the conversation. Maybe through this we will learn a little more about this un-tapped demographic in relation to cycling, and maybe someone will feel inspired enough to step up and make something happen.

  1. What are is currently limiting overweight and obese people from enjoying cycling, and what are some things that can be done to help those people get past those limitations?
  2. What model of program or group would best serve to reach out to and assist overweight people in getting on bikes?
  3. Obviously cycling has great health benefits, and spending time on a bike will almost always prove a positive treatment to one’s body, but should a program or group focus on weight-loss as a goal, or should the idea simply be the inclusion of all body types, regardless of that person’s motivation?
  4. What are the equipment and facility needs of overweight cyclists? How do those needs differ from smaller-build riders?
  5. Are there already programs in existence that focus on this issue? In Portland? If so what are they doing right? What more could they be doing?
  6. Are you, or do you know someone who could benefit from a program that assists and encourages overweight people to ride bikes? What fears or hesitations exist that have kept you or that person from riding?

Please use the comments section for discussion. Anonymous entries, provided they are beneficial to the discussion, are welcome.

Thanks for taking time to talk about this,
Deacon Amos

Bike Temple

The Joy of Sects Ride Report

Yesterday the Bike Temple embarked on it’s highly anticipated debut event, The Joy of Sects Ride, a Pedalpolooza ride designed to teach your average citizen a little something about a religion and it’s facilities that they possibly knew nothing about.
We started at Colonel Summers Park, allowing a little time for mingling and late-comers before getting started (one great practice I learned from Brad and Heather of Easy Riders is to start a ride 30 minutes after it’s posted time, giving those on bike time a chance to show.) At the park The Bike Temple introduced itself and it’s intentions to the group, which at it’s strongest was somewhere around 40 people. We explained the ambitions and vision of the Bike Temple and answered questions from the crowd, who was very eager to learn about the great things that are coming from this group.

We left Colonel Summers and headed to our first stop, the Metanoia Peace Community, a United Methodist Church that is located in a large, beautiful house in the Irvington community. Many of the members live in the building and help to maintain the building and run the small publishing business therein, creating books that help those facing tragedy and loss. We were greeted by the Pastor, John Schwiebert, who sat us down in the living room and gave us a brief summery of their faith and practices, as well as answered questions from the group. More information on the Metanoia Peace Community can be found on their website.
After Metanoia we headed southeast to the Multnomah weekly Quaker Friends meeting at Stark and 43rd.  A representative named Lew came out to the front and told us all about the history and practices of the Quaker faith, which includes the practice of total consensus when making decisions among other things.  Lew also answered some questions from the crowd and would have taken us on a tour but sadly we ran out of time at that stop.  You can learn more about the Quaker Meeting here.
We then headed to the Dharma Rain Zen Center, where Jyoshin met with us and led us into the building.  We all took off our shoes and sat in the beautiful building while Jyoshin talked to us about the Buddhist practice of meditation and inner vision.  The Dharma Rain Center is open to the public and designed to give the everyday person a chance to envolve themselves in the teaching and practice of Buddhism.  See their website for details and schedules.
From Dharma Rain we headed downtown for a quick stop at the First Unitarian Church and the Beth Israel Jewish Congregation.  Due to some unfortunate and very last-minute events these facilities were unable to provide us with a representative to speak to the group, but we took the opportunity to explore their campuses and talk amongst ourselves about what good could be done within the cycling community by a religiously-focused group like the Bike Temple.  This sparked some great conversation and discussion by some very intelligent and forward-thinking people.  It was a great experience.

For our final stop we rode up to NE to the Lotus Seed Ashram.  The Lotus Seed is a community of residents who practice and teach yoga in a large and beautiful church building that was formerly home to Portland’s first black congregation.  The leader of the community, Wren, brought us into the chapel and talked to us about what the Lotus Seed does and it’s goals for the future.   It was great to sit back in a pew and take in the light from the stained glass windows.  The Lotus Seed site has more information on classes and event schedules.
It was a great pleasure to lead this ride with such an amazing group of people.  Everyone was respectful and open-minded at each stop, and the questions and discussions that stemmed from them were very inspiring.  After Wren wrapped up at the Lotus Seed many of us stood around outside talking about what could be done next, and Pasture Ted collected contact information and passed out membership forms.  If you are interested in getting involved in projects and events like this, feel free to email us.  
Thanks to everyone who came and all of the representatives at our stops.  This was a very fun and informative ride for us all.

For more (better) pics and coverage see those by here

Bike Temple

Starting a Revolution – Pedalpalooza Begins

This evening marked the beginning of the Bicycle Holy Land‘s most blessed and beheld events, Pedalpalooza.  The 2+ weeks of bike fun all began with the Pedalpalooza Kickoff Parade, drawing a huge crowd of hundreds (I didn’t hear an official tally but a very unscientific scan of this video would suggest 300-400) of people who all rode through the streets of our fair city wearing nothing but smiles… and clothing.

The spirit of the bicycle is in the air tonight, and it is palpable.  Bicycle heaven, here we come!

Bike Temple

The Sacred Construction of Holy Architects

I came across this beauty tonight at Last Thursday.

While it’s not made entirely out of bikes, it is definitely a good start. And a mighty good looking one at that. Don’t be surprised if you see similar MR. E designs in the future from the Bike Temple.

Bike Temple

Choosing my religion bike temple

At last night’s meeting we talked about building some “mobile religious equipment.” It was a term I hadn’t heard before, but pretty useful. Mobile religious equipment can include
* bike shops for the healing of bikes
* shrines
* confessionals
* musical devices
* enhancing profile and acceptance of bicycle worship

At the Davis Bike Church we built a “Mobile Minister Unit.” Modeled after a Spanish-style “mission” church, it enabled us to bring religion to the masses. The Bike Church as an organization had been around for a couple years at that point, but its physical location was in a hippie commune on campus and it wasn’t easy to find.

When we paraded the mobile church through town for the first time, we could hear the passers-by saying “mumble mumble mumble ‘bike church’ mumble mumble…” We knew we’d gotten the message through. What message? We weren’t sure of the details, and maybe they weren’t clear either, but it was a good thing.

The mobile church can carry a lot of stuff. Fully outfitted, it carries
* a work stand,
* a pretty complete bike workshop,
* a card table,
* lawn chairs,
* food and beverages (fuel),
* an EZ-up canopy, and
* a getaway bike
You can ride it across town without too much trouble, set up at the Farmers’ Market, bring it to bike rodeos at schools, picnics, and parties. Davis is full of poorly maintained bikes, so it’s fun to flag people down, pump their tires up from 10 psi to 40, raise the seat an inch or two, and send them on their way. It is also useful for giving people rides home or taking a nap.

On May 10 we’ll have a work party to build some Mobile Religious Equipment for use in Portland. Smaller and lighter for Portland, but hopefully just as remarkable and functional. We’re not quite sure what it will be yet, but it will be ready for the Joy of Sects ride at Pedalpalooza. Come help if you can, stay tuned for details.

More pics of the “Mobile Ministry Unit” of the Davis Bike Church on the Davis Wiki

Pasture Ted

Bike Temple

The Bicycle Lord’s Prayer

The Bicycle Lord’s Prayer made it’s Bike Temple debut recital at our organizer’s meeting last night. Rev. Phil introduced us to these holy words, as he did so long ago on the KBOO bike show.

Our father, whose art’s in heven, hollow be thy frame. Thy links’ cogs run. Thy wheel be done on earth, as it is in bicycle heaven. Give us this day our steely thread. And forgive us our dents, as we fogive our denters, or dentees. So why not lead us into temptation, as long as you’re delivering us from evil: for thine is the kingdom, and the pedal power, and the chrome-plated glory, for ever. AMEN