17 Feb

Certainty and ignorance

Statue of John Knox

Although I write about and am engaged with politics these days, I haven’t always held much in the way of political opinions.  The impetus for beginning an interest in it came from one conversation too many in which I was left silent with no opinion to give.  As it seemed to me – and which I now know to be naïve – the people whose opinions I heard tended to carry their views with a certainty and conviction I rarely had about anything.  Not knowing the details of political circumstances, I concluded these people were better informed than I was, so I generally felt no reason to interject or disagree with them.

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12 Feb

How to stay motivated

I’ve seen that a lot of people appear to struggle with how to stay motivated.  Most people make resolutions for themselves, but more often than not the resolve to stand by those resolutions fizzles out over time.  It can be a difficult thing to decide what one should (or shouldn’t) do with themselves, but even when this has been worked out, how can a person stick by their original plans?  And how can a person account for why they were raring to go one moment, but totally apathetic the next?

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10 Feb

The budo lifestyle

Lately I’ve been thinking a number of things concerning my attitude towards life and my understanding of the ‘budo lifestyle’.  Particularly on my mind has been the nature of necessity and how it’s comforting, but ultimately disingenuous, to view things as needs when in reality they are wants.  The absence of some things can be psychologically difficult, but making life difficult is not the same as making it impossible, and that, it seems to me, is the true distinction between a want and a need.

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27 Sep

Why keep a diary?

Diary

For the last two and a half years I’ve kept a diary.  I don’t remember particularly why I started it – although luckily, my diary remembers for me.  As recorded, it was “to hold for myself a private compendium of my thoughts and feelings, highs and lows, successes and regrets, so that when I’m older I might browse through it and remind myself of what it was like to be alive five, ten, fifteen years ago.”  Reading through it, I can now recall my reasons more easily, and consequently I’m feeling a little re-invigorated about maintaining the habit.

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12 Dec

The importance of self-improvement

Self-improvement

If there’s one habit I’d advocate as being the most important for living a fulfilled life, it would be self-improvement. Self-improvement is so important that for most people I’d even say it was essential. As humans, developing new skills and growing as people is central to our vision of self-worth and sense of achievement, but I think it goes deeper than this.

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09 Sep

Vegetarianism

Vegetarianism

Living ethically has become increasingly important to me over the last few years and I realised some time during early Summer 2011 that eating meat didn’t sit quite rightly with me, once I’d begun to attempt to determine a coherent model for ethical behaviour.  I wrote the following excerpt in my diary on January 10th 2012 briefly summarising my reasons, quoted here (with minor amendments) to save covering the same ground twice:

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