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Francis

Join Date:
2010-10-31

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Philosophy, life, art, literature, politics, sometimes humour. Join me on our common journey in.. search of wisdom

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Latest Blog Posts

  • The Sum of All Fears
    on Dec 22, 2015 in fascism history politics society Trump
    “ … the only thing we have to fear is fear itself …”Franklin D. Roosevelt, Inaugural Address (1933) "There is always an easy solution to every human problem--neat, plausible, and wrong."H. L. Menken, The Divine Afflatus (1917)Let me begi...
  • The Sad, Mad World we Live inDo you know the feeling, that feeling of anger and disgust at the amount of fucked-up stupidity, evil and hopelessness in the world? Today a couple of (almost certainly) Islamicist fanatic terrorists attacked the offices of the French satirical paper...
  • Ukraine: Conflicting Narratives“Narrative” has become one of those buzz-words or buzz-concepts which one cannot avoid nowadays. At its most basic, it simply means “story”; in the more precise cultural context in which it is generally used, it is a story told or sharedwithi...
  • Complexity Meditation
    on Jan 27, 2014 in meditation personal psychology travel
    I was in an aeroplane, more than seven miles up, when I started thinking about the complexity of things.For people who do meditation, one of the major goals is to achieve simplicity, that sensation when all is one, when the constant ephemera of daily...
  • Walking SlowlyI have started to practice walking slowly.As a little boy, around fifty years ago now, I decided that there was something virtuous about walking quickly. I suspect that this is a common phenomenon among little boys who go walking with their fathers;...
  • Back Home to Sligo
    on Mar 23, 2013 in personal memoir Ireland memory Sligo
    “The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there.”(L.P. Hartley, The Go-Between)I had occasion recently to visit a part of my past, a period immensely important and formative for me, a place which was, for seven years, both focus...
  • Family Histories 1: The Cowboy
    on Feb 23, 2013 in personal Hunts Smutternagh history
    It was a fine Sunday morning in early summer 1865. James Hunt opened the door of his new home and looked south over the road and the downward sloping land towards the lake. He gave a sigh of contentment and muttered a brief prayer of thanks in Irish...
  • A Kind of Christmas Card ...
    on Dec 23, 2012 in personal friendship Christmas
    The (temporary) creative pause from posting regularly on this blog which I decided to acknowledge (or give myself – I’m not sure which is closer to the truth; probably both) is something that I’m actually finding very pleasant. Just tooling aro...
  • Ireland's Abortion Legislation MessIt is not an easy thing to say, particularly to say publicly in a forum like this for the whole world to read. But it is the way I have been feeling for the past week or so.At the moment, I am ashamed to be Irish.On November 14, the Irish Times publi...
  • Listening
    on Nov 11, 2012 in personal writing
    It’s four in the morning and I’m on the night shift. Things are quiet; the five children who are my charges are all sleeping peacefully. I’ve just been outside for a cigarette, leaving the door slightly open so that I can hear the signal, shoul...
  • Life - interrupted
    on Oct 23, 2012 in personal nursing
    Just the other day I was at a birthday party; a birthday party for a five year old. There were presents, a cake, and a gang of kids creating excited mayhem. There were even more adults present – but that too is not unusual for a large extended fami...
  • Michael Schumacher and the (Male) German PsycheThe news spread like a brushfire through the German media on Friday morning: Mercedes had fired their legendary Formula One driver, Michael Schumacher. Well, to be completely accurate, the reports were that they would not be renewing his contract bey...
  • Expletive F***ing Deleted
    on Sep 25, 2012 in culture society language
    Fuck it. I wonder if others who write have often had that experience of roughly knowing what they want to say, but not being able to find the proper beginning. That bitch of a Muse of mine doesn’t seem to have got her lazy ass out of bed this morni...
  • Islam and Freedom of OpinionIt’s happening again. Once more, somebody has been less than respectful about Islam, or the prophet Mohammed, and once more throughout the Islamic world – particularly the Arab world – enraged mobs are demonstrating before embassies and consula...
  • Dada wouldn't buy me a BauhausIt was a post by my blogger friend Gina about the Dada movement which got me thinking about a number of different cultural/artistic movements in the first third of the last century. I have nothing like Gina’s deep understanding and expertise in the...
  • Human Dignity; My Friend JimmyFor all of my working life in nursing – over twenty years now – I’ve been involved, in one way or another, with the basic limits, the boundaries of life. Either in geriatric care (accompanying people who are coming to the end of their life’s...
  • Social Health CareWhen Danny Boyle (Trainspotters, Slumdog Millionaire), the prestigious director chosen to conceptualise and stage the opening ceremony for the recent Olympic games in London sat down to decide how he was going to do it, he was soon faced with a probl...
  • Rastaman in BarbadosSometimes a holiday has to stand for more than just rest and relaxation. By the middle of the nineties, my marriage was floundering. Following a huge row, I left our home on a Sunday evening for a week-long training course, convinced that the whole t...
  • Pussy RiotOn February 21 this year, a group of women, wearing brightly coloured dresses, tights, and balaclavas, rushed into the sanctuary area of the Russian Orthodox Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow and for around two minutes performed a protest son...
  • Using up the PlanetOver the past few months I’ve been working my way – very pleasurably I may add – through the novels of the Master and Commander or Aubrey-Maturin series by Patrick O’Brien. For those who do not know them – and I cannot recommend them highly...

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