On disagreement

I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it. S.G. Tallentyre, The Friends of Voltaire Disagreements have been with us for as long as people have had opinions, which is to say for as long as there have been people. What is interesting about this historicalContinue reading “On disagreement”

On denial

Everybody knows that the dice are loaded Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed Everybody knows that the war is over Everybody knows the good guys lost Everybody knows the fight was fixed The poor stay poor, the rich get rich That’s how it goes Everybody knows Leonard Cohen, “Everybody knows” There is rarely much pointContinue reading “On denial”

On being a modern employee

Live the behaviours! An actual manager at my step-daughter’s workplace Before the media became obsessed with how evil Vladimir Putin is, there was a fair bit of hot air given to the phenomenon known as the Great Resignation. This is not, as one might suppose, some sort of renaissance of Stoicism in which large numbersContinue reading “On being a modern employee”

On bargaining

However healthy you think you are, remember that vegetarians die too. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, On Grief and Grieving: Finding the Meaning of Grief Through the Five Stages of Loss It is not a coincidence that I begin this week’s post with a quotation from Elisabeth Kübler-Ross. Her work on dying and on the grieving process isContinue reading “On bargaining”

On endings

No one is actually dead until the ripples they cause in the world die away. Terry Pratchett, Reaper Man In the northern hemisphere, where I happen to live, today is the shortest day of the year: midwinter, a time of customary celebration – Christian or otherwise – when people gather together around a fire, feastContinue reading “On endings”

On craziness

It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. Jiddu Krishnamurti Many people would agree that we live in crazy times. But I think there’s some value in trying to distinguish between the various kinds of crazy we are seeing, if only to keep ourselves (comparatively) sane. Some ofContinue reading “On craziness”

On the failure of political leadership

Everyone stay calm! This is not happening! King Arnulf in Erik the Viking by Terry Jones Anyone who has been paying the slightest attention to current events in, say, the last couple of years will be aware of at least one crisis besetting the industrial world. We have, of course, had the Covid-19 pandemic, whichContinue reading “On the failure of political leadership”

On forgiveness

Forgive yourself your sins Lloyd Cole, “Sweetness” (Rattlesnakes, 1984) The subject of this week’s post was suggested by on of my readers, Phil Harris. I welcome further suggestions via the comment section below, although of course I reserve the right to ignore them 🙂 In English, we speak of bearing a grudge. I like thisContinue reading “On forgiveness”

On homelessness

Those who had wanted to go home would never get there now. Wendell Berry, “The objective” There are many people in the industrialised world who currently have no fixed address – some of them voluntarily, but most of them not. Exactly how many depends on who you believe. Government statistics will naturally understate the figuresContinue reading “On homelessness”

On my favourite Tarot trump

It is not death that a man should fear, but he should fear never beginning to live. Marcus Aurelius, Meditations If you know nothing else about the Tarot, you will have seen this card. It is the one that the gypsy fortune-teller always picks out in every cheesy horror film or TV show since theContinue reading “On my favourite Tarot trump”