Monday, September 15, 2014

The Power of Words

I've been reading Churchill: The Power of Words which is full of wonderful and profound insights into human nature. This morning I quote from the book. Here, in a speech in March 1949 he reflects on the changes he had seen in his lifetime.

'Science bestowed immense new powers on man, and at the same time, created conditions which were largely beyond his comprehension and still more beyond his control. While he nursed the illusion of growing mastery and exulted in his new trappings, he became the sport and presently the victim of tides, currents, of whirlpools and tornadoes amid which he was far more helpless than he had been for a long time.

...this vast expansion was unhappily not accompanied by any noticeable advance in the stature of man, either in his mental faculties, or his moral character.'

Sunday, September 14, 2014

I like winning

It's Monday morning and after a victorious weekend, I am feeling good and ready for action. My soccer team won our semi final on Saturday. The Bulldogs won their elimination final yesterday, and I finished two more assignments and submitted them just under three hours before the deadline. I take a lot of satisfaction from these inspirational victories, (not that I had anything to do with the Bulldogs win besides yelling at the television as I watched them), and I feel positive.

Hmmm...I wonder how much my positive thinking influenced these outcomes?

Hopefully, I can advance my WIP this week. That's the plan.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

The Power of Nonsense

I want to preface my remarks by saying that I have read Creating Miracles, and am now reading The Power of Now, so I have an open mind. I'm a curious person who is particularly fascinated by popular culture and its obsession with the cheap and easy fix. 

It is a sign of immaturity to ascribe miraculous healing powers to Band-aids. Children do that. Children ask for a Band-aid when they hurt themselves even if their skin has not been broken, and when said medical treatment is given, they feel better. However, band-aids don't take away pain and they don't heal cuts. They prevent infection and repress blood flow. That's all. Society believes in Band-aid solutions for its serious moral problems. We make laws to punish wrongdoing, and when they don't succeed as deterrents we make the penalties harsher while ignoring the causes. Society does the best it can: flawed systems operated by flawed humans.

Individuals also like Band-aids. Alcohol, drugs, work, sport and sex are all used to treat the symptoms of unhappiness, loneliness and discontent. What is the cause of these symptoms? What is the disease? Perhaps I'll answer that question some other time. I'm sure you have your own views, but I wanted to talk about New Age religion and the alleged power of the human mind to change reality.


In a nutshell, the various power of positive thought philosophies say that if you are unhappy, lonely or discontented, it's your fault because your thinking is wrong. If your circumstances suck then you can change them with your mind. You can heal yourself, fix all your problems and find peace simply by wanting it and by utilising the power of your mind. You are the key to your salvation. If you don't know how to do it, then learn because your ignorance is costing you your happiness.

Don't get me wrong. I believe positivity has power, and I accept that to some extent we can either ease or exacerbate our emotional suffering depending on our attitude but...

What do you think? What is the disease? What is the cure? Can people save themselves or do we need help?

Photo sources:
http://radiofreethinker.com/2012/02/04/the-myth-of-positive-thinking/
http://www.breathofoptimism.com/carnival-positive-thinking-bad-seems-edition/
http://kimkardashian.celebuzz.com/2012/09/13/happy-positive-thinking-day/kim-kardashian-happy-positive-thinking-day-quotes-009/
http://www.clipartbest.com/pink-band-aids

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Nothing

I have nothing to say today but I just thought I would check in. I have assignments due in 65 and a half hours from now, and I probably should devote my effort to those babies rather than my WIP. It's also the first week of the play-offs in the National Rugby League so I'll need to watch four games of footy. I have a few other very important things to do as well like watch the final episodes of Star Trek Enterprise, and then figure out which series I am going to watch next. Challenging times lay ahead of me my friends. Please pray for me.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Don't be in such a hurry

I am currently nearing the ends of two books, Sanctus by Simon Toyne, and The Power of Words which is the life of Winston Churchill as told by his public speeches. Although they are both good books and worth reading, I am not going to make any other comments on the books themselves. I'm more interested in what happens 'towards the end of a book.'

Hands up if you rush through the end of a book. Does anyone else do that? Whereas through the majority of Sanctus, for example, I was reading it how you are supposed to read a book - savouring the words, allowing them to permeate the mind and create images and arouse feelings - I now find myself skimming a little in a pointless race to the end where the only prize is the opportunity to commence a new book. (That's good but you know what I mean.) I have to force myself to slow down. Not to be in such a hurry. The end deserves just as much respectful and interested attention as the beginning and the middle.

I've realized that I write my novels in the same fashion. I've occasionally been criticised for finishing my stories too quickly. I am now also aware, courtesy of this blog post, that I live my life in exactly the same way I read books. Hmmmm...Can anybody else relate the way they read to the way they live?

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Big Brother

Big Brother Australia 2014 has started, and I'm a fan. I know reality TV is frowned on and looked down upon, as are those who watch it but I can't see the point of such condescension and snobbery. It reminds me of the kind of ignorance typified by one woman who said that she liked all kinds of music: as long as it had a beat and a melody, but not heavy metal. (There's actually two ways to take that statement - make of it what you will.)

This year on Big Brother the contestants are playing as pairs. They have to make joint decisions. If one of them breaks a rule, they both get punished. They nominate together, and can be nominated and evicted together.

Two of the ladies were offered $10 000 each. The condition was that if they accepted the money, there would no food in the house for anyone, for one week, except for meal replacement shakes. They also had to inform their house mates about what they had done. Now I reckon most viewers were hoping they took they cash, but not because we admire selfishness. Part of us might have hoped they would do the 'right thing', but the other part of us hoped they wouldn't because if they took the money, it would make things much more interesting in the house.

This speaks volumes about human nature, and is the reason why I like Big Brother, (reality TV show style, not George Orwell style) Big Brother messes with the house mates heads for our entertainment, and I am not ashamed to admit that I like it.

Does anyone else like Big Brother? Any haters out there? Any comments? I welcome you all.

Monday, September 8, 2014

A Little Light

"A little light in a lot of darkness goes a long way."  - POD 'Roots in Stereo'

"The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it." - John 1:5

"Thank you for your entry David. Note if you would like any of your novels advertised in the anthology we hold no charge you need only send pics of the books." - Kelly Pickering, The Lady in the Loft

"I hope that is not true. I want you to have a good life." - anonymous friend