Reflections

A Million Horses Killed in World War I

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ALMOST A MILLION HORSES WERE KILLED in World War I. HORSES! Imagine! Beautiful horses. Plus, of course, “half the seed of Europe one by one” (quoting First World War poet, Wilfred Owen). Although he read the relatively tamer “Anthem for Doomed Youth”, what Michael Palin did NOT read last night in the Festival Hall (and no doubt would not dare to do so, for fear of the outrage) was Owen’s more poignant and acerbic poem which concludes: “If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs, obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues — My friend, you would not tell with such high zest to children ardent for some desperate glory the old Lie: Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori”. Those last Latin Read the rest of this entry »

Cessation of Hostilities (New Poem for Armistice Day)

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Cessation of Hostilities

There has never been a true “cessation of hostilities”.
For those three NewSpeak words can only ever be
a gassy smokescreen made to mask the secret liability
of those for whom all peace is all ways merely just
the disingenuous space that comes between 2 wars.

In every dirty hushful place where vulture salesmen
gather to be pedlars of the means of our destruction, Read the rest of this entry »

You’ve Been Played! The Dark Glue which Binds Brexit, the EU, Trump & #metoo

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Blood & Glue

Introduction

A couple of years ago, I wrote these words: “A kind of madness has overtaken the world. It is not a new sort of madness; for it has been in operation on various levels and in varying degrees for centuries, even for millennia. But it is a madness which has increased hugely in intensity during the past three decades and especially in the fifteen years since the events of September 11th, 2001 in the USA. This madness has occasionally exploded temporarily prior to those events (notably in the engineered mass public response to the death of Lady Diana Spencer or the ludicrous “ticker-tape” euphoria which greeted the elections of Tony Blair as Prime Minister in the UK and Barak Obama as President in the USA as Savio(u)rs of the world. The madness about which I am speaking is far more bizarre than what one would ordinarily call “madness”. For it is contagious, striking anyone of any social class, political wing, level of intelligence or degree of sophistication. The madness of which I am speaking is completely irrational, making people believe things which are patently and provably untrue, especially those which come through visual and written media channels and which seem to send them into a frenzy of unfettered emotionalism. It is a madness which bears witness to public gullibility and human stupidity”. Read the rest of this entry »

I Am a Citizen of Nowhere!

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TO ANY BUDDING BUREAUCRAT OR APPARATCHIK OF THE STATE who may imagine this is their concern (although it’s none of anybody’s business [and yet, in a way, it’s everybody’s too]): I AM A CITIZEN OF NOWHERE — inhabitant of déjà vu. For I am not part of this wasteland world. Where I come from, a thesaurus (that is, a treasure-chest) of gemstone words has swirled inside all heads from long before they were a twinkle in an angel’s eye. Where I come from, it is irrational to fear to die — unnatural to never cry with tears of blesséd joy. Where I come from, bureaucracy would never calcify the Read the rest of this entry »

The Great Paradox of the Spiritual Life

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CHRIST SAID SOME VERY CHALLENGING WORDS about the pathway for the genuine spiritual pilgrim: “Enter through the narrow gate, because the gate is wide and the way is spacious that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. How narrow is the gate and difficult the way that leads to life, and there are few who find it!” Wow! Just meditate on those words for a while; for they sum up what is demanded if one is to be a serious disciple of Christ and follower of His Light. The gate is narrow and the way itself is difficult. The deep spiritual life is not attractive to the superficial dilettante, for such a person knows that there is the need for total dedication and personal sacrifice but comparatively few people are serious about personal change and genuine spiritual revelation… As Christ also said: “If anyone wants to become My disciple, he must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow Me”. This is the diametric opposite of the narcissism and self-obsession which is so prevalent across humanity.
Read the rest of this entry »

The Fall of Truth in a Fearful World

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EARLIER IN THIS BOOK, I wrote about the practice of telling falsehoods or spreading derogatory information about other people — advising that one should never accept such information at face value because very often the people doing the bad-mouthing are doing so either because of their own internal hang-ups or just plain old jealousy. The true victim in any calumnious situation is always truth.

Truth, for me, is the most precious commodity in the universe, so it’s hardly surprising that it should come under attack in a corrupted, relativistic world where the majority have no reverence for the genuinely sacred. When I contemplate what the world would be like without the possibility of objective truth, I see a moral desert and the cosmos would be an ugly scar from one end to the other. Yet, many today deny that there is even such a thing as truth! They say that everyone has their own truth therefore it can only ever be relative and never absolute. Truth, they say, is therefore merely what any human being happens to feel is right at any one time.

But is this true? Or, rather, can it be true, given the fact that they say that nothing can be true! Allow me to demonstrate this conundrum in the form of a dialogue. This is a dialogue which you could very easily have with most members of the human race. It is based on an actual conversation that I had and it goes like this: Read the rest of this entry »

Dear Fakebook…

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Dear Fakebook,

I understand that you are stepping up your game to eliminate profiles which you deem to be propagating fake news or false information. That is surely going to be counterproductive for you because most of the “informational” memes and many of the claims on Fakebook are fake, which would mean you will have to delete many of your subscribers! 😀 However, I think you may mean that you are going to delete profiles which publish information which you would like to fool the public into believing is fake, but which really exposes the truth about what is happening in the world 😉 Read the rest of this entry »