Novelist. Author of APSARAS and tales from the beautiful Saigh Valley. First person to quantify spiritual values.

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Monday, 30 June 2014

New Mosque for Barcelona

The Emir of Qatar is reported to be negotiating with the owners to buy the now defunct Barcelona bullring with a view to turning it into the biggest mosque in Europe. It will accommodate 40,000 worshippers at prayer. In support of his action he is reminding the Barcelona town hall of all the money his charitable organisation, the Qatari Investment Fund, pumps into the local economy, not least the local Football Club.
A spokesman for the group says that Barcelona is the last big Spanish City without a custom built mosque but locals fear the sheer size will provoke disturbances not least because of its proximity to the  Sagrada Familia church, within hearing distance of the 300 metre tall minaret and its muezzins. Nor, it seems, is the Emir concerned that half a millenium ago his God forsook all his Moorish adherents as they were kicked out of the Iberian peninsular by the Catholic kings.
The plans are ambitious but I wonder if, instead of escalating the reach of Islam, the Emir should be more mindful of the damage caused by its followers around the globe, I am thinking of ISIS in Iraq,  Boko Haram in Africa and Al Qaeda in Asia, and wind down operations. We are repeatedly told that the Islamic faith is a peaceful religion but hard line stances on, for example, apostacy and  blasphemy and the promotion of sharia law in the secular world makes people nervous, especially if they have followed a different faith or none. However this is not the most worrisome aspect of the faith; the worst fear for the world is the resolve of Islam that 'total submission to God' is not only preferable; it is unequivocally essential in all aspects of life including Government. This, despite its obvious failings in Iberia and the Near and Middle East.
Now, ISIS have issued a map showing the extent of the Caliphate they wish to create and it includes the reoccupation of the Iberian Peninsular.

Has the Emir of Qatar jumped the gun or is he part of the plan?
Can the Abrahamic religions sustain? I can forsee a time in the near future when the Vatican and Lambeth Palace say they have seen and heard enough; Spinoza was right, science has won and there is absolutely no justification for any belief in an interactive God. The last bastion of ignorance, along with some lost jungle tribes and the Creationists of America,  will be the followers of Islam. Does the Emir of Qatar, I'm sure an educated man, see the new mosque as a centre of religious tolerance and excellence or will he see it become the largest secular counselling centre in the world and a tourist attraction much like the old mosque or mezquita of Cordoba?

Sunday, 29 June 2014

Footballer's lives

Are you enjoying the football World Cup in Brasil? Good. Now, why not read some short stories about footballer's lives set against a background of corruption and evil in the 'beautiful game'?
Why not download from Amazon, 'The George at Bustington'? It's a perfect beach or holiday read.
Download link:

The George at Bustington

Saturday, 28 June 2014

A Class Act

I am not normally a fan of US television shows nor indeed of American actors but I must avow to being heartened by the charity of US actress, Amy Adams. She exchanged her first class seat on an Detroit to Los Angeles flight for one in 'coach' class booked by a serving soldier. Now that is CLASSY.
Well done Amy.

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Why do English teams lose?

A few weeks ago the English sports enthusiast relished the prospects of a Golden era of English team performances. Ahead lay the one day cricket tests against Sri Lanka, the World Cup in Brasil and the three Rugby Union tests against the All Blacks in New Zealand. Despite the usual English optimism we now look back on the smouldering wreck of defeat in all three disciplines and wonder how it is possible for the English  to fail at the top levels of sport. In the cricket we must accept that Sri Lanka have adapted to the short game better than England ( score 3-2 to sri Lanka) but what of football and rugby?
England football team is out of the World Cup with one game remaining to be played in the group round. They lost both their earlier games to Italy and Uraguay despite playing the better football. They lost because they scored too few goals despite having created numerous chances and fluffed the majority whilst their opponents took their opportunities. One has to feel some sympathy for those players who are out of the tournament without having taken any or minimal part whilst others, perhaps more illustrious, were allowed more than ample time to expose their shortcomings. At the time of writing England played two and lost two.
It is much the same picture in New Zealand for the rugby. In the first two tests the English team forged some great chances to score but failed to finish moves in the face of fierce All Black resistance whilst their opponents plucked scores out of anywhere. In the third test it was clear that with the series lost, having given their all, the team just wanted to go home after a long season. England played three; lost three.
It  appears to be the case that despite great preparation, the English sports teams are not psychologically disposed to finish the job; they haven't got the hunger or guile to win like some of their continental opponents. The English still believe that it is the taking part that counts whilst the opposition only countenance winning. Meanwhile the English supporter must remain sanguine and remember there will be another world cup; another opportunity to test our sporting prowess against the best but hope that the next generation of players will have adopted the killer instinct and the teams score, score and score again.

Friday, 20 June 2014

Religion will be the death of us.

The US has pledged to send a modest military team to Iraq. They are needed to help the beleaguered, mainly Shia, Iraqui administration against the marauding Sunni extremists, ISIS,  intent on establishing a new Caliphate under Sharia law in the region. Obama, in making the decision was mindful not to demonstrate any preferment of one strain of Islam over another.
In the West, Governments are meant to function outside of religious constraints but it is a property of Islam that there is no such distinction because submission to God governs every facet of life.
So! Why the hell is it that a secular Government is called upon to settle a religious division? Why cannot the religious leaders sort the mess out for themselves?  Surely they have God on their side!
Or do they? Isn't it time the world has a grown-up debate about the role of religions in the life of people. People in power side-step the issue all the time, nervous of offending demographic sensibilities but with millions dying and being displaced throughout the world as a result of religious conflict, isn't it time that someone said enough is enough. Let us stop pussyfooting about and demand that the religions come clean on their roles in society or be proscribed. This includes Christianity in all its forms, remembering that in the first millenium after Christ, Orthodox followers observed their devotions in a manner, such as full prostration during prayer, later copied by Muslims. Muslims believe in the Old Testament Patriarchs and revere Jesus as a prophet so why is it that so many people around the world are being slaughtered in the name of God? If God is all powerful and Merciful, surely He should address the problem, not a mere mortal, even if he is the leader of the most powerful nation on earth.

Monday, 16 June 2014

The other Golden Ratio

The Golden Ratio,ɸ, is recognised as the product of a numeric sequence found throughout the naturally world. From the formation of sunflower and other seeds, the branching of boughs and roots of plants to the genetic breakdown of bees the eye-pleasing effects of the ratio has been adopted by artists and architects alike. Painters use canvases whose length to width dimensions mimic the ratio and builders from antiquity have constructed edifices according to the rule. Indeed the pyramids of Giza are built according to the Golden Ratio of 1: 1.618.... The number, a number like pi which is described as irrational, meaning that it cannot be expressed as a fraction, is derived from the fibonacci series of numbers, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21 where a term is  calculated by adding the previous two terms.
The relationship between successive terms is described mathematically by the equation:  

ɸ² = ɸ + 1

One of the solutions to this quation gives  ɸ ~ 1.618.... Try dividing 13 by 8 or 21 by 13 to see the point.
However there is another solution; one almost never considered.  ɸ ~  - 0.618...
What is the significance of this value? Has it any significance?
 If one wanted to construct a pyramid using this negative ratio, it is my assertion that you would need to take into account the value 'i' the square root of minus one. We are again in the realm of negative dimensions.
(For more insights see my book: 'SPIRITUAL MAN: AN INTRODUCTION TO NEGATIVE DIMENSIONS'. Available for download from Amazon for the price of a pint.)

One of the characteristics of the positive Golden Ratio is that it promotes what humans think of as 'beauty'. I also maintain that it also suggests, lightness and  'good'. Could it be therefore, that the negative value will lead to what we might consider to be 'ugly' results which also represent darkness and evil?

Saturday, 14 June 2014

Rape as a war crime.

While the Ukraine was being invaded by Russia and Iraq was being overrun by the most militant Jihadists on the planet, the UK's Secretary of State at the Foreign office, Hague, was hobnobbing with someone called Jolie in the cause, if I understand this right, of making rape a war crime. I sometimes wonder if these people are of this world. Ms Jolie said that the rape was not about sex but power. Really! To cap it all this silly woman has been made a 'Dame' in the Queen's birthday honours.
The only crime in war is war itself. The mistakes that lead to war are always caused by the politicians and State leaders, not the people who pay for the folly with their lives. Once war is  joined, not necessarily declared, it should be and is prosecuted with maximum vigour. There should be no middle ages sense of chivalry, no Marquis of Queensbury rules, no Geneva convention because they are frankly a waste of time when there is no prize for coming second. In war shit happens, including rape. Whilst Hague postured, the terrorists in Iraq were slaughtering their opposition committing outrage after outrage with beheadings and crucifiction. Rape is one of the spoils of war; to the victor, the prize and one of the prizes is unbridled and gratuitous release of sexual tensions. Telling a conqueror that rape is a war crime is as much use as suggesting that the taking of rings and jewellery from the war dead is theft.

Instead of wasting his time and taxpayers money hosting vanity projects, Hague and his fellow conspirators should get real and tackle those who foment war at the outset and, importantly, address the issue of worldwide disrespect for woman, especially in Asia. That, I suggest, and the causes of female vilification, is a far more worthwhile project for la Jolie and she should start with the worst perpetrator, religion.

Thursday, 12 June 2014

British Values

Co-editor of 'Conservative Woman', Laura Perrins suggests that for greater social cohesion we ditch the notion of 'British values' and stick to 'Love' as espoused by St Paul.
See:  Laura Perrins

'Love' however is one of those ineffable traits open to different interpretations unless you  are God. It is not advisable, for example, to love thy neighbour's missus nor does excessive self-love give rise to a rounded personality. It is far better to adopt a different notion; one also found in the Bible but not necessarily a uniquely Christian ideology I would suggest. I refer to the 'Golden Rule' attributed to Jesus in Matthew 7.12 and Luke 6.31.


That should do it!

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Who do your children take after? Part 2

In  part 1 I discussed the genealogical connection between the Old Testament Patriarch, Enoch and Jesus and wondered if nature always went back 70 or so generations when establishing the characters of new babies or is it a random time-scale?
Maybe it was this that the scribes were trying to tell us when they wrote psalm 90. Verse 1: 'Lord you have been our dwelling-place throughout all generations'. And in verse 10: 'The length of our days is seventy years-or eighty, if we have the strength'. Have the scribes not told the whole story again?
Perhaps they had something to say, besides our life span, about the importance of generations, particularly between the seventieth and eightieth. Can it be a coincidence that  besides the seventy generations between Enoch and Jesus there are eighty generations between Ishmael, first born son of the Patriarch Abraham and the Prophet Muhammed.
This may be significant. In the light of the Arab Spring and the resurgence of Jihad, could it be another coincidence that seventy generations have now passed since the days of the Prophet Muhammed, 1400 or so years ago. Are youngsters today, all over the world, being born with the characters (souls) of men (and women) who in their day were jihadists fighting for their new religion and has nature, using 'unreal' time, now imbued today's youngsters with a religious fervour their parents don't recognise in themselves?

What of the line of King David? If my theory is correct there should have been born in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries children with the characteristics inherited from Jesus' siblings if not from the Man himself. It may have heralded the 'second coming'. Who were they? Did they surface? Were they pious and do good works? It wouldn't come as a surprise because, remember,  the Book of Ecclesiastes tell us: 'There is nothing new under the sun'. It was a momentous time for Christianity with bibles becoming available in Europe, Henry VIII's reformation and the later Council of Trent's opposition to Protestantism. However there was no one who stood out as a Christian or Jewish prophet and we will have to wait another forty generations for the opportunity to arise again. Unless, that is, we consider Joan of Arc, born cerca 1412. Born of a peasant family she had visions of the Archangel Michael and was later pronounced a martyr and beatified. Another 'Prophet' announced himself in the nineteenth century, however: Baha'u'llah, leader of the Baha'i faith, claimed to be a direct descendant of Abraham, some 145 generations later demonstrating yet again the seventieth/eightieth generation connection.

If I am right, next time you look at little Johnnie and wonder who he takes after, you might have to cast your mind back seventy generations to the early dark ages for clues; but beware, sometimes the family genealogy may come as big a surprise as the little character you've brought into the world.


Available for download from Amazon to Kindle and other e-readers.

Who do your children take after? Part 1

As a parent, have you ever wondered where your children come from? Have you ever heard parents wondering where their little Johnnie came from; so different is he from both parents and  totally unlike his siblings? Of course some physical characteristics such as hair and eye colour can be identified with near family but what about the mental character or as I'm tempted to call it, the soul? Does it follow Mendelian genetic rules or is there another source; one far removed from the immediate family?
It is difficult to argue that a person's character is forged in a combination of nature and nurture but what constitutes the 'nature' part of the equation. Could it be that shortly after conception, as the brain is assembled by stem cells, it draws information from its parents' DNA in the same way that a computer is loaded with software to make it function. But what is this information and how does the nascent brain acquire the information. It is my argument that the brain trawls the parent's DNA for a 'character' using 'unreal' or negative time.
According to my theory unreal time is the means by which a brain remembers the past and is one of the THREE dimensions of time. The others are 'real' time which recognises the here and now and 'imaginary' time that allows for anticipation of a future, analysis, problem solving, creativity and is responsible for the ineffable traits such as love and artistic appreciation.
The idea of three dimensions of time is not new. Thomas Aquinas identified 'tempus' as earthly time (real), 'aevum' as angelic time (unreal) and 'aeternitas' time for those who knew God. (Imaginary time). Professor Hawking in his book, 'A Brief History of Time' also introduced the concept of 'Imaginary Time'.
It is my contention that each generation of forbears is recorded in a person's DNA as intimated in Psalm 90, verse 1 of the Holy Bible. We shall see that this Psalm and its reference to 'seventy' (three score and ten) and 'eighty' plays an important part in what I have to say.
Using 'unreal' time the brain selects a character from either one of the parental DNAs and uploads the information. At this stage I'm tempted to suggest that it is a random selection and that it is impossible to say whether this character is either a saint, a sinner or something in between.
Is there any proof for this theory? It is difficult to say but we have one clue, again taken from the Bible where some detailed hereditary information  is available and it involves Jesus. Can we identify the Character which was downloaded into Mary and Joseph's child through their DNA? I believe we can and the realisation will make the hairs on your neck stand up. Seventy generations before Jesus a Patriarch, the father of Methuselah, lived; a man known for his piety because it is said that he walked with God. Enoch was special; very special because alone of all the ancient Patriarchs, he lived 365 years, and then 'God took him away'. All the other Patriarchs, as recorded in Genesis, lived and died. But not Enoch; he alone did not die, possibly a precursor of his later ancestor, Jesus, who, according to the scriptures, also did not die but ascended into heaven near Bethany.

In the next part we shall see why nature may not be so randomly selective and why seventy to eighty generations seems relevant.


Available for download from Amazon to Kindle and other e-readers.

Tuesday, 10 June 2014

Misappliance of Economic Science

Factions fighting for Scottish Independence claim families will be £1500 better off after secession whilst opponents claim the exact opposite. Christine Lagarde the leader of the International Monetary Fund asked last week if she needed to bend her knees to beg forgiveness after her people underestimated the strength of the UK's economy. How can so called economists get it so wrong?
Why I mention these points is to underline how vague is the science of economics. Nobody associated with economics really has a clue; but why? Surely it can't be so difficult to understand that we work to earn money which we use to buy goods and services. But mankind has contrived to complicate matters so that we have such factors as market or socialist economies, supply and demand, qualitative easing, Keynesianism and much more. One can't help but wonder if this obfuscation of what should be a fairly simple process is, in fact, designed to defraud the masses of their rightful property. I don't know how much Lagarde earns at the IMF but I very much doubt that she pockets less than a miner,say. I know who I value more.