Fleeting Fancies, Ephemeral Encounters…

ImageI have been inspired to write this article from what would seem to many as the most trivial of things but, for me at least, it has evoked a much deeper interpretation. For tonight, I write as I journey by train up to Exeter to meet with my beautiful partner, Oona.

I’ve been sat here quietly recovering from a night of unbridled chaos, painting the town red [some might say in more ways than one if one were to consider our spreading of revolutionary red ideas right, Sam? ;-)] with some of my very accommodating, understanding and, hopefully, forgiving comrades; Glynn and Sam.

In the short moments that I’ve been sat here on the train I have been engaged in exchanging pleasantries with two fellow commuters who I have had the good fortune to cross paths with as they travel to London to meet with loved ones. I wish them all the best of luck on their journey and hope against hope that they may come across this blog of their own accord one day. If so, I would like to say a quick hello to them as I’m on the 19:55 train from Plymouth to London Paddington on a Sunday evening. Of course, they will be much more likely to see this blog with your help, reader, and so I encourage you to like and share this article widely in the hope that it reaches them. I’m well aware that I could just show this article to them right now but that would take the fun out of it and wouldn’t allow you, my audience, to contribute to this story by sharing this blog around the world to wherever it needs to go.

So, why is it that such a small exchange of pleasantries can be such an inspiration to a student of the revolution such as myself? Well, if you insist on continuing to read up to this point then I guess I shall have to reward your curiosity and satiate it by sharing my thoughts and feelings with you…

It is my belief that thanks to the prospects of hope and clarity of vision shared by my fellow comrades in the Socialist Party, I have become a much more rounded, self-actualised (if one were inclined to use Maslow’s terms, as I, for one, would be) individual. It is from this well of confidence and conviction that I have found something very useful as a source of energy for my revolutionary candour; the ability to fully engage with the moment, Seize the day (Carpe Diem!) and enjoy the sweet, fleeting fancies or ephemeral encounters of the present moment.

Moreover, I fully believe that this newly found zest for life is infectious and so I pass on the good will and positive energy that I’m feeling onto you, my audience, who I hold the utmost gratitude for, for heeding my thoughts and feelings. I hope that these carefully crafted yarns, will one day weave an enriched and revolutionary tapestry across the pages of history and I would love for each and every one of you to be a part of that tapestry. A tall order, some might say but then everything starts with a dream.

Now, to engage in the finer things that l’amour has to offer as I meet up with ma cherie with all the promise of passion, desire and whimsy.

And so my readers my task for this evening is done. I dedicate this piece to each and every one of you who has taken the time to read it and I ask but one small labour of love in return as a way of expressing your gratitude for my literary architecture and that is this: that you share this piece out in the hopes that it should find its way to the travellers who I may never have the opportunity to meet again.

P. S. In the short time that it has taken for me to get from Exeter St David’s train station to the house of my beloved, I have enjoyed yet another ephemeral encounter with a homeless woman named Mandy. I could not spare any change for her or her fine specimen of a Rottweiler rescue dog but I hope that her heart was touched tonight on the unforgiving streets of Capitalism. I did however, spend the things that I can always afford to any human being; compassion, a sympathetic ear, a hug and my time. I hope these sentimentalities keep you at least a little warmer tonight. Mandy, I wish you godspeed (or the relevant Atheist equivalent if you share my scepticism of such a force within our universe) in your harsh journey. I know that I may never see you again but again, I call upon the reader to share this article widely so that you may hear my pledge which I dedicate to you and all others who are in a similar situation to you. I pledge to you, that I will do everything in my power to ensure that we experience Socialist revolution in our lifetime, as I cannot sleep soundly at night knowing that there are those such as yourself who are still neglected by our current inadequate political system.

And now the rest I leave up to you, dear reader. Can you get my pledge to those I have vowed to fight for? I hope you can and if you share this article then you can take comfort in being part of sending out that hope to those who need to hear it most…

Anger is only the beginning…

Yesterday, I attended the funeral of my late grandmother and as any of you who have lost a family member or indeed any loved one will know it can bring out all manner of emotions. There is the joy of sharing fond memories and the bringing together of the family juxtaposed to the pain of loss as well as possible feelings of anger, guilt or regret. On top of this there is a sobering reminder of our own mortality which can most certainly put things into perspective.

In my last blog entry I discussed the need for people to get ‘mad as hell’ and for a good reason; there’s a lot to get mad about and anger is a very powerful emotion. It is one of our most primitive emotions which I’m sure we would have evolved away from were it no longer useful.

However, whilst it does give us a rush of adrenalin and a feeling of empowerment it will only get you so far and on its own is generally a tool of destruction or defiance. The key is to turn it into something more through the power of the will coupled with a vision of a better future.

It is anger that has led to the riots of 2011 which one would find hard to see much in the way of benefits. I would also say that anger was a key factor in the eruption of the Occupy movement. This is due to the feelings of injustice at the seemingly alternate universe which bankers, corporate fat cats and our elected “representatives” inhabit, full of multi-million pound bonuses, astronomical tax avoidance and rewards for failure. Though in comparison to the riots, Occupy certainly did much more in the way of good with some bankers being shamed into giving back their bonuses and more importantly bringing such issues into public discourse. In my opinion, the problem with Occupy was that it knew much of what was wrong but did not know what to replace it with. Thus, people flocked to the outward expression of indignation to begin with, but were quickly left confused or frustrated as Occupy never really formed a solid political cadre with which people could get behind.

It seems that whilst anger is useful and can spur people and movements on, it is unsustainable as a basis for more permanent change both for individuals as well as movements and should be used in moderation.

It seems as though there is a lot of anger bubbling away due to changes being pushed through parliament which are really starting to have adverse effects on people’s lives. However, a lot of this anger is being repressed by people who feel isolated or too scared to vent their frustrations due to the stoic British culture. Currently, where anger does spill over it is either raw and unbridled, leading to destruction or persecution of scapegoats such as immigrants or “scroungers”, or it is unorganised and unsustainable leading to a momentary surge followed by a quick fizzling out. Anger shouldn’t be a driving force though. It may temper actions and strengthen resolve but something more is needed. If we’re to create a better world it needs to incorporate compassion, love and kindness not just an indignation for the people or systems that are responsible for the injustice of today. It is also essential to not let anger run everyday life. Live in the moment and strive for whatever it is that’s going to create happiness. Mix up the daily routine, help someone, try new things and never forget to dream! Just don’t forget to put the work in to make the dream a reality; it’s the little steps that make the big changes.

Talking of little steps I’d like to thank those of you who took the time to read my last blog entry. Particularly those of you who felt compelled to share it, for it is thanks to you that my voice was heard as far as Canada! I hope you continue to enjoy as I write, feel free to leave your own comments/musings/rants on here.

Opening Thoughts

Give a person an answer, you quench their thirst for knowledge. Teach them to question and they’ll sail the seas of knowledge, forever chasing the horizon of truth.

Beginnings

The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step

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