Dignified silence

Dignified silence

Millions of words have been spoken and written during the race to elect the next President of the USA. The noise has been deafening and divisions between peoples should alarm politicians and media alike.

This is no game and too many people live in fear. Never the best advisor that is, fear.

It is long overdue that media and politicians show some restraint. Freedom of speech is a great good but sometimes a dignified silence helps a cause better. Wounds need to be healed and divisions turned into acceptance and unity.

America has shown how much work there is to do in this terribly divided world. Let’s get to work and do it quietly.

Leonard Cohen

Leonard Cohen

This seems to be the year of talent that has had enough of this world. Well, that is one way of looking at it. Bowie, Prince and now the great poet Leonard Cohen. We are told he was ready and that is perhaps all that counts.

The last hour or so, to watch, and listen to his music was beautiful. Then I found Rufus Wainwright singing Hallelujah, together with a 1500 people strong choir. Listening to and watching that one could not help for the tears to stream. There is still hope for humanity.

 

POTUS

POTUS

The best news today is the fact that the race to vote the next President of the USA comes to an end. Well one hopes so anyway. There is not so much to say about this since too much words have already been spoken.

The race has been a tragedy, an insult to humanity. For this we should be grateful as it teaches us that radical change is needed. We humans need to change to enable a better society. Politics does not work, war does not work. We know what does not work so why do we carry on, making more mess. Why do we not care?

The most significant notion is how devised us humans are. Surely, we are all responsible for that. The question is how we can unite.

Race, religion, sex, country of birth; it does not matter, should not matter. But it does, for we fear. We know we do not know.

Whomever is the next POTUS does not matter for it will not bring the change humanity as a whole, or you as a person need. Humans need an inner revolution to change themselves and thus society.

It is hard work, but worth to try and create real hope.

Karl Marx

Karl Marx

Today I finally met Karl Marx, well stood at what is his second resting place at Highgate Cemetery in North London. His first grave was deemed too obscure, too simple by the admirers of this man, who died in 1883. His current resting place was erected in 1954, and his body exhumed from the old, today still existing grave, and reburied in its current, far more prominent spot. The massive head of Marx, his monument, is visited by both his many followers and those who hate his thinking and communism, of which, after all, Marx is an important symbol. Below the head of the thinker the famous (or infamous, depending on taste) words “Workers of all lands unite” can be read.

Standing at the grave my thoughts went back to the time that, as a naive but idealistic teenager, I had a poster of the man on my bedroom door. The attractive aspect of Marx’ thinking to me was simply the word ‘unite’. He wanted the normal folk to unite and be stronger, so there would no longer be poor people. That was just my teenage thinking and even today that seems fine.

An awful lot of unbearable things have happened since communism got a foothold in this world. One would argue also very good things have come from (mis)using Marx’ thinking. Still, I felt apprehensive standing there and was contemplating what the man would have made of it all himself.

Love

Love

Sometimes in life you are in trouble and then there is love.

Not the love that asks for something,  wants anything at all. Just love.

It is just there. Words cannot describe this for it is a state of being. It is total and unconditional and there is no me, no centre.

Love does not know a beginning, nor an end. 

When love is there, you know it. All is complete.

Love does not need words.

Writing; the why

Writing; the why

People talk and write a lot about what writing is all about, or why they do write themselves. A lot can be said about the subject indeed.

Writing is simply a way to communicate. Whatever form you give to your writing, it is your way to find a way of communicating. 

The advice to myself is to keep it simple, to not be pretentious, but to try and write so others can understand it. This however difficult the subject might be. Simple is often difficult but it has become my aim. 

Why use words that are seldom used. To impress, to show people how clever you are? My view is that clear, well written language is both beautiful and important. If you really want to communicate that is.

War and Peace? Not for me. Diarrhoea of words, to say it not very elegant. Yes, impressive enough.

Writing to communicate, to connect, is what I am after. My struggle is about putting into words that what we perhaps all struggle to put into words. 

That light

That light

I was lucky enough to play a game of golf this afternoon. Let me rephrase this. I attempted to play a game of golf this afternoon.

Whilst hacking away at this tiny little ball, trying to get it in the right direction, playing the right length,and so on, I suddenly had to stop. Had to stop because something woke me up.

The light, that fabulous Autumnal sunlight,  covering the golden and red leaves of those old trees, surrounding the golf course, just took my breath away. One can never describe the beauty of such a moment for it is gone once you try to do so.

Who cares about a bad game of golf, being blessed enough to witness and be part of the power of nature. 

Freedom of Speech – it is not an excuse 

Freedom of Speech – it is not an excuse 

It is clear that freedom of speech is a great good. There have been very important reasons for the UN and individual countries to both embrace and make this principle law. Great, but since the writer is not a lawyer this piece is not about the technical aspects associated with the laws to do with freedom of speech. The approach will at this stage therefore be kept simple.

There can be said a lot about the subject but at this stage it is just the fact that people think they can say about anything they like, whilst hiding behind their rights that prompts to write something.

Freedom of speech does not mean one can just say anything that comes to mind,  nor has it ever meant to be that way. Admittendly, countries differ in their approach how is dealt with these particular issues.

With freedom comes responsibility, comes a duty towards having this right. Whilst it is undoubtedly right that it is normal that people should be entitled to whatever their opinions might be, and articulate this at any time and in any place, too many folk nowadays use this right to dish dirt, incite hatred, spread division, and so on.

Why bother about this? Firstly because just saying whatever you like impacts the world we talk about, our fellow humans. Secondly if people speak too boldly about sensitive issues, things that are part of other folks being, for example their religion, or their sexual orientation, they provoke a reaction. This reaction can be potentially one that can not be condoned in its own right

So, the writer wants to censor and abandon freedom of speech? The contrary is true. We need to protect this great right, our freedom of speech. The writer is concerned that the lack of quality of debate, the constant ranting and raving that goes on, will encourage lawmakers to introduce more and more censorship. To avoid just that we need to make sure we protect freedom of speech, and not use it as an excuse.

See this piece as a sort of first draft please.

Diversity? Yes, please!

Diversity? Yes, please!

If there is something disturbing going on in the world right now, it is division. The us and them, the black and white, the Muslim and the Christian. People seem to be willing to slaughter what is different from who they are. You are a Democrat, a Communist, a Republican and so on. Whatever you are seems to be better than what the other is. 

Now one would argue this is nothing new and that is right. But stating that and just to  shrug one’s shoulders is all too easy. The question to ask is why do we not accept, even celebrate diversity. Why do we have this fear of the unknown, because that’s what it mostly is. 

Something to ponder.

Silence and calm

Silence and calm

Just been walking the dog and now enjoying a cuppa. Blissfully quiet in the house, very strangely quiet one would say.

It is one of those grey early autumn mornings and it feels as of nature has come to a standstill. In fact it somehow feels that life has done the same. Everything is calm, so the inclination is to just let it be that way.

When it is so peaceful the decision to make is whether to let the angry big world back into your life. Look at the news on the television, or the internet and all noise will start all over again.

I decide to leave the angry big world for what it is today and get on with life. It is all one can do really.