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The Story of Two and a Half Dreams

As a child my father told me a story which was the start of my spiritual journey. It was the story of two dreams. My grandfather, Anthony Farah had a strange relationship with the number 5. Everything significant happened in my grandfather’s life on the 5th year. He was born in South Africa in 1905, shortly thereafter returning to his family’s village in Lebanon called Sib’il, he was a Sib’ilenie (man from Sib’il). In 1925 my grandfather married my grandmother Nora. [...]

The Irrational Psyche and the Shadow.

In considering the psyche it is important to take into account that the psyche is fundamentally an irrational entity. What I mean by this is that the psyche is not at heart driven by rational forces. The concept of reason is a cultural concept which whilst immensely valuable does not describe our psychology. This was in part the great breakthrough that Sigmund Freud made. He saw through the illusion of man as a reasonable and respectable creature. Freud recognised that [...]

The Search for Consciousness. Where are we in 2010?

In April this year the Centre for Consciousness Studies, at the University of Arizona, will hold their 9th, bi-annual, conference. As this approaches I thought it a good time to reflect on some of the presenters and their thoughts at the last conference in 2008. The initiative started in 1994 by Professor Stuart Hameroff, University of Arizona, and David Chalmers, Australian National University, is a cross-disciplinary, scientific, investigation into the phenomenon of consciousness. The conference is well supported and draws a [...]

The Problem with Heaven

I think we have to consider the possibility that the church may be fibbing when they tell us about heaven. To clarify, by: church- I am referring to all forms of religion which propose an afterlife in paradise.The problem, as I understand it, is if you or I were to find ourselves in a place where all our problems had been resolved, a utopia where we knew only bliss, where all the problems we have, ever had or ever [...]

Paradox, Parody and Paranoia

Hell this Eugene Terreblanche thing isn’t going away in a hurry is it? No doubt it soon will, so don’t seat it. I know how these things work, I’ve seen it before, a big fuss for a few days, maybe a week or two until the next big thing captures the headlines and then it will fade. Bad timing though just before the World Cup, but no ja what can we do. It is quite interesting to look at what [...]

My Friend Jonathan Livingston Seagull

Hell I must say I loved the book Jonathan Livingston Seagull as a kid. My standard 4 teacher (grade 6), Miss Fair-Weather, would read it to us every day just before the end of school. I was no fan of school but I looked forward to this story time with an enthusiasm that is the sole dominion of childhood. There was something special about Jonathan Livingston Seagull which I felt then and I still feel now, and that was the [...]

Is suffering a legitimate form of human expression?

I heard some disturbing news yesterday. A member of my family, a cousin, was the victim of unprovoked violence and through this assault he was seriously hurt. Coincidently (as if there is such a thing) I also attended the funeral service of a woman yesterday, who died at a young age after suffering terribly from cancer for the last few years. A few months ago I wrote the following email to my cousin who was the victim of the recent assault. [...]

Is it Real or just in my Head?

The Objective vs. Subjective ParadoxWe are looking specifically at the Objective vs. Subjective paradox with respect to discovering the meaning of our lives. Let’s start off by clearly defining the question: The philosophical debate Objective- independently verifiable, reproducible, collectively true Subjective-concerned with me only, as seen through my unique filters   1. Is there such a thing as objective reality? Meaning, does a reality exist independently of our perception of it? In philosophy this kind of objectivity is referred to as Objective Realism or [...]

In Search of the Transcendental

The more I read and the more I see the more I am persuaded as to the inescapability of Albert Camu’s metaphor for human existence of Sisyphus’s inexorable fate. As a teenager I read Desmond Morris’s Naked Ape and was amused by the zoologist’s study of man as an animal species. It was only much later as an adult that the grim truth of this analogy became apparent to me. I was once struck by the thought of how mankind [...]

I come not to praise ET but to bury him.

Synchronicity is really difficult to illustrate. Much like a dream, the images that have real meaning and are evocative for the dreamer, frequently fail to have a similar impact on anyone else who gets to hear the dream. C. G. Jung coined the term synchronicity to describe events which are meaningfully, but not causally, related. Certain synchronicities occur, which are so bizarre, that even those less so inclined, sit up and take notice. These ones become part of popular folklore. There [...]