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Showing posts from 2020

Come, let us pray

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  Words are powerful. They are a currency of power, like money or law or hierarchy or psychology. They can be used benignly or with mischief, to heal or to control. And the meanings of words can be arbitrary, shared and disputed. I almost would like to see a new language emerge that keeps meanings fixed, in a capsule, pure and unchangeable. But that wouldn’t do either, for the problem does not lie within language. I don’t think words are meant to be taken literally. At the most simple level, words only point to other sets of words for definition. And higher up in complexity is metaphor and analogy and humour and subtext and sarcasm and passive aggression, etcetera. There can be a chasm between what I say and how it is received. I guess that's a constant. Words’ meanings change over time, which is bizarre and fascinating. Like, until the late fifteenth century the word girl meant a child of either sex. Boys were occasionally called knave girl and girls were known as gay girls. And u

It is a random universe to which we must bring meaning

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I wonder if Amazon and Alcoholics Anonymous and weight loss clinics are primed to be the accidental beneficiaries of this pandemic? For, inactivity seems to breed consumption. Not, ironically, the infectious bacterial disease that mainly affects the lungs, with symptoms including coughing, weight loss, night sweats and fever, better known as tuberculosis. No, consumption as in, online shopping, hoarding, watching, drinking, drug taking, over- and under-eating etc. etc. A few weeks ago a client of mine came to see me for a massage treatment. She's a professional and a bit of a go-getter. Trains everyday. Very health conscious. A regular 30 year old married woman, ambitious and with a very full life. She had been working from home for a few weeks at the time of her massage appointment, due to her department's coronavirus OH&S policy. She came in for a massage even with the then widely mediated risks of exposure and pre-lock-down. Her physical discomfort w

Continuum

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The Holocaust isn’t that extraordinary an event, I’ve come to understand, when looked at in the context of human history. Although it should be. It ought to be one of those things that couldn’t possibly be true. A conspiracy, an exaggeration... But it is true. It did happen.  When juxtaposed with other acts of dehumanisation and of human destruction by equivalent or lesser actors, it is easier to understand. The Holocaust is simply on a continuum of scale of dehumanisation of which every person and every nation sits somewhere along. And I believe that it can happen again, and is happening now, albeit to much lesser degrees and in different ways all around the world, and certainly has happened since the Holocaust too. Of course, the Holocaust is unique in its scale and due to the history of Jewish persecution. No question. And of course, it is a completely abhorrent thing. Mind blowingly devastating when one really thinks about it and one immerses themselves in some of its hi

I Was Here First

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A human man, one day, noticed some unusual activity gaining momentum at his house's front door. The first of which was the increased bird excrement and tree kindling accumulating just beneath the fuse box that stood guard at the entrance to his home. Out of the crack at the bottom of the fuse box door was a clue as to the source of the kindling. Twigs descended from the base of the white box, standing out like bright green weeds thriving in the crack of a lifeless concrete path. The human thus suspected a nest hidden within, for this fuse box’s door had a square hole at the top with its own sliding shutter door, providing a sign of welcome hospitality. The door’s little door had always been open...well, for as long as it was this human’s home. Which wasn’t that long, considering the length of this house’s history. But this little opening was for the electricity inspector to read the meter and nothing more! The human man had never noticed the sliding shutter before. A