New Walks

One of the finest aspects of moving to a new place is exploring. I really enjoy skipping around trying to find new fields, new woodlands and new small roads. The place where I am now is filled with walks to the Moors and across the back of the A30 outside of Bodmin.

The walk was not all up to Queenie’s high standards but it didn’t rain, the road was quiet and it didn’t end in five minutes.

I am looking forward to finding out more about the place.

Moving Day

Today I moved from my home of 22 tears, two years and a month after my mother died. The lead up to the move was sad but the day came I was glad to finally be going. There are many memories of the past years I treasure and many that I do not.

Leaving sorrow in a building is one thing, but the sorrow is part of your being. Ans though constant reminders will not be around me any more constant reminders never leave me, because she is my mother. It isn’t a case of trying t escape the inevitable, but rather of moving along with her near me but in a different way.

People\ live in our heads even when they are alive. They live there still.

We are all looking

No matter the tribe, no matter the time our minds have invented stories to explain who we are and why we exist. It is science that has enabled us to do away with humano-centric stories and slowly walk a path that talks about existence without making it all about humanity.

I think thats why so many religious people fear science, because they are scared of being meaningless given that meaning to them means making them something individual and special. They want the story to make them something more than the are not show them how more everything else is.

Science has a magnificence that eludes the vain

Creative Education

Society has grown up dependent upon our natures to develop its customs. As such, as people change their perceptions, they find the agreed modes of conduct restrictive and the agreed forms of education stultifying.

Dyslexics and autistic have been insulated from the educational chains because they cannot understand the teachings anyway, but the key thing to remember is that society cannot run if there are millions of free thinkers in it.

Well, it cannot run the way it is running.

Every Writer Needs an Editor

Interesting even as I re-read past articles and essays that I have not seen in years, I see all the errors which missed me before. Now, I fully realise my mind is wider and contains more information and my experience of ‘being read’ is deeper, even so the need to have been edited is there.

And trying my hand now as an editor I see that that, too, is an art and not everyone is good at it. I tend to let people speak and edit lightly, while my publisher almost rewrites entire pieces.

I think the greatest instance of a writer and editor working together is To Kill a Mockingbird. That should really have two names on it.

What is a right?

Human beings give themselves rights. They say they exist as part of the natural order of things but that is untrue. All rights have a history both in thinking and legal terms and all rights have been fought for and many given birth as new thinking emerges.

It is a mark of the progress of society and how we interact with each other that we create rights. The challenge today is animal rights, something no one in farming or politics would have even thought of a hundred years ago but today they have to think about in advanced societies.

But as we create them so we can annul them.

Who fights who whom?

If the powerful set the agenda and have the money leaving the majority with a slim chance, depute their talents, or breaking through to the heights talent can take one – be it in any of the art form – then turning away and ‘doing your own thing regardless’ is not a form of taking power to yourself but of surrendering.

It doesn’t seem like surrendering because you pursue your art form but you no longer care for the recognition, and you know that you are worthy of it when you see the slight talent that gets noticed.

So, those of us who write critically are not being negative. We are the only warriors on the front line.

If you’re entitled to, don’t

I was given a parking ticket a few months ago while waiting for gates to be opened where I would park overnight. The reason for the ticket was the car was parked on the cobbles in front of the gate blocking some pedestrians. I complained. I was granted my objection.

Of course had I been famous or the car had had a flag on it or a police escort, the ticket would never have been given even it is were still blocking some pedestrians. This is the reason people  strive for status and fame – because others respond to them in a different, often beneficial, way.

If you have power, treat everyone as if they were a monarch.

Utopia

Everyone has one. Usually benign but in recent times (read the whole of human recorded history) Utopia usually means either a place that is perfectly you own culture and no one else, or instituted by god who, as we know, never gets anything wrong.

The search for the unattainable has led many wise thinkers to suggest we could have Utopia if we were all ethical, that this planet is itself a Garden of Eden and we don’t need to fantasize about another.

Because, we we all know, Utopia is not a place (it’s in the definition) but a state of mind.

I Win

Game theory is all about how to make interactions between people into a game. It is how to do all those things that are threatening – gaining advantage, getting the better side of a deal, playing to the weaknesses of your opposite numbers, while not appearing threatening in  any way.

It’s a little like being a stand up comedian. Make ’em laugh at the fact that you are ripping their pretensions to shreds. Make them pay for the privilege and feed off their needs, to become famous yourself.

It isn’t monopoly any more.

God Imperfect

When faced with any logical critique of divinity, believers usually devolve to the  apothegm ‘you cannot know the mind of god’. And yet their holy books and everything they proceed to explain to you is all about the mind of god. What he wants, how to get into his good graces, what he created us for…on this basis I take two fundamentals about god. He is all powerful and he is all good.

It is a principle of nature of that life feeds on life…with all the bloodshed, pain, suffering and loss that such a principle entails. The god that created that principle is either not all good or not all powerful. If he were both he would never create such a principle.

The Gnostics answered this by stating that it was a demigod – a lesser being created by god – who actually created the Earth and us. They saw the flaws in creation and knew they cannot be attributed to an all powerful, all good god. It is a pity that 2,000 years later people still don’t get the gaping hole in their description of god.

Interesting Outcome

It is beautifully hot weather down here in Cornwall. Blue skies, drops of rain are rare and the beaches still have low tides and soft sand.

Yet holiday bookings are down despite this being such a hot summer. My friends tell me it is due to Brexit beginning to bite into people’s pockets. I think, actually, such hot weather across the country gives people living in the places they run from to get here, the feeling they are already in a different place.

I hope they enjoy their holiday.

A New Political Paradigm

Following on from a conversation I had yesterday we agreed that there is a desperate need for the following:

To stop treating people as statistics and make decisions purely on a straight sense of (natural) justice

To stop people being elected to Parliament who have no life experience but are career politicians.

To have an education system that makes people question, which makes them less easy to govern but

Addresses the fact that a few people cannot rule millions. Even with an effective civil service so we need

More local decision making free from corruption.

I don’t think any of this will cure the malaise in our cultures and none taken singly would make a difference but together…who know?

 

Kevin Reilly

I met Kevin in the 90s. A rotund, bearded well spoken Irish bookbinder who had big ideas. He had spent decades of his life working with the landed classes and he knew a lot of people who loved books. Unfortunately, he also lived and worked with the Earl of st Germans and Perry was a smoker and a wastrel, in the English not Cornish sense, so he had become too much of a drinker and a chain smoker.

But he was always funny, always kind, always loving to his friends. I worked with him for four years on an idea to build a college to teach all the arts and crafts of making books by hand. The idea was scuppered by Alan Livingstone and the Combined University project but it remains and wonderful project. Sadly, Kevin will never see it built.

Farewell.

Bright Eyed and Bushy Tailed

I wonder how many interesting ideas have been lost or forgotten by people who have heard them from  a boring speaker?  Conversely, I wonder how many awful things stick in the minds of the gullible because they were spoken with animation, fire and well thought out fluency?

Youtube is littered with both. Effective lecturers are few and far between which is a great pity because you can move nations with oratory.

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